The debt collection process – what can the debt collector do and what rights does the debtor have?
The money borrowed must be returned. When the debtor consistently avoids paying his debts, he cannot blame the creditor for trying to get his money back. One of the actions that may be against the debtor is debt collection proceedings. Although the word “proceeding” is very exaggerated, because debt collection is not subject to special legal restrictions. What rights can a debt collector use?
Debt collector is not a bailiff!
The debt collector certainly can’t just enter your home and take away valuable things. This is not a bailiff. Debt collector is a representative of a private company specializing in debt recovery. Usually, loan companies use such companies. Banks usually have their own debt collection department, which acts directly on behalf of the bank.
It should also be remembered that loan companies as well as private creditors can sell debt to a debt collection company. In return, they receive a certain part of the commitment and waive the right to seek recovery. All rights in this situation are taken over by the company, which from that moment becomes a new creditor. And it has exactly the same rights as the former creditor – including the possibility of going to court.
What qualifications does an employee of a debt collection company have?
The profession of debt collector is not particularly regulated by law. However, based on the provisions of the Penal and Civil Code, we can, however, specify behaviors that are completely prohibited. We’ll talk about them in a moment. Let’s start with what a debt collector can do. Considering that the debtor must express a willingness to cooperate, the debt collector has practically no powers when he is faced with refusal or no response. In such a situation, it remains for the creditor to take legal action. Debt collection aims to settle the matter amicably. The debt collector may, therefore, try to contact you and try to convince the debtor by legal methods to pay the debts.
What a debt collector cannot do
Unfortunately, many debt collection companies still rely on aggressive behavior designed to intimidate the debtor and force repayment. If the debtor is able to present evidence of such behavior (e.g. recording of a conversation), he may seek legal assistance and accuse the debt collection company of unfair practices. In this way, you can even get high compensation or lead to the closure of the debt collection company. Unfortunately, such situations are rare. What is the behavior of the debt collector unlawful?
- the debt collector is not allowed to enter our flat without our consent.
- the debt collector may make contact attempts, but too frequent and persistent attempts may be considered harassment. Especially when the debtor clearly avoids confrontation.
- the debt collector may not occupy property belonging to the debtor.
- Debt discussions with third parties (e.g. family or neighbors) are not allowed.
- the debt collector must not threaten, intimidate or use other forms of violence.
- the debt collector may not require the debtor to show his financial standing.
- it is also illegal to charge additional fees without the debtor’s consent. The exception is penalty interest for late payment of the obligation.
Is it worth negotiating with a debt collector?
However, it is worth considering one issue. Is ignoring a debt collector when the claims are fully justified by reasonable behavior? Not necessarily. The creditor will not give up as easily, especially when the debt relates to big money. Debt collection is an attempt to settle the matter amicably in such a way as to avoid additional costs associated with taking legal action. It may therefore turn out that finding a compromise will save us many worries and will save assets from the bailiff. Considering these unpleasant perspectives, it is worth at least listening to the proposals of the debt collector and thinking about possible solutions to the problem.