Strategies Debt Collectors Use to Find You
It is almost impossible to hide from a debt collector. Some people are of the mind that they can "lay low" for some time and somehow the bill collector will stop contacting them. However, in this day and age, it is very easy for any person, including collection agencies, to get any information they want about you with nothing more than your government name.
Handling debt collectors on your own can be very frustrating. DoNotPay can help you determine when the collectors are crossing the line, and guide you on what to do during such situations.
We can also help you with ERC debt collection, medical debt collection, and guide you on how to negotiate with a debt collector. Read along to get a better understanding of the different tactics collection agencies can use to find you, and how DoNotPay can help.
How Can a Debt Collector Find You?
1. They can use your credit card information.
When applying for a loan, you will be required to give your credit card information. You will have to provide personal details such as your current physical address, your phone number, and more. Collection agencies can use this information to locate you.
2. They can get information from your friends and relatives.
According to the FDCPA, loan collection agencies can reach out to your friends, neighbors, and family members to verify your contact information. However, there is a limit as to how far they can go with the conversation and how often they can contact you.
For example, they cannot disclose that they are calling to get you to pay a debt or provide any details about the debt. If a debt collector goes against the law, you should file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFBP) or the Federal Trade Commission.
|CFBP Contact Information||Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
PO Box 27170
Washington, DC 20038
3. Debt collectors can hunt for you in phone books and directories.
With as little as your mobile number or home number, a debt collector can use a reverse directory to find out your physical location. Most debt collection agencies have access to reverse directories.
4. They can use information from your state's Department of Motor Vehicles.
In many states, debt collectors and creditors can access your state's DMV database to verify your address.
5. They can use social media, and they love to do so.
If any of your social media accounts say where you live and this information is open to the public, debt collectors can take advantage of this and find where you live.
When you post about your new job or information about your current job, be assured that some debt collector is lurking somewhere in the background and is more than ready to do the legwork to visit your workplace.
How to Deal with Debt Collectors on Your Own
1. Do not ignore them.
This is a golden rule when it comes to debt collection agencies. Ignoring a debt collector when they try to reach out to you can be damaging to your peace of mind, as they will only get more aggressive with their antics. Ignoring them can also negatively impact your credit score.
2. Get all the important information about the debt.
Before you agree that you owe the debt, get as much information from the debt collector as you can. The more they tell you, the better for you. It is worth noting that the debt collector cannot take you to court for money owed if the statute of limitations has already expired.
- The date the debt was incurred
- The location of the sale or service
- Any payments you’ve made already
- Any history that suggests the debt might not be yours
3. Do not disclose any personal information over the phone
Whether you can pay off the debt or not, limit your talking. Instead, ask them to send a letter detailing all the information about the previous debt.
Challenges of Dealing with Debt Collectors on Your own
Debt collectors can be a very stubborn lot of people. What is more, they do not give up. When you think they are done with you, they only become more aggressive. If a debt collector contacts you, knowing the right steps to take can save you a lot of mental anguish.
The good news is that DoNotPay can help you handle these bill collectors. In addition to reporting them when they cross the line, DoNotPay can also help you file a lawsuit against them in a federal or state court.
How to Handle Debt Collectors with DoNotPay
DoNotPay can help you handle debt collectors in 3 easy steps:
1. Search "debt collection" on DoNotPay.
2. Answer a series of questions about the debt collectors, including when you were contacted and how you were contacted, so we can determine if they have violated any debt collection laws.
3. Decide which course of action you want to take based on our guidance, such as filing a debt verification request, demanding for the collectors to stop contacting you, or reporting them to the CFPB.
And that's it! Once you choose the course of action you want to take, DoNotPay will handle the rest. We'll deliver your request directly to the debt collectors via first-class mail, or file your complaint automatically with the CFPB so that they're no longer able to use unfair debt collection practices.
What Else Can DoNotPay Do?
DoNotPay can offer you many other great services, such as:
- Helping you learn how to cancel
- Helping you learn to write financial aid appeal letters
- Helping you with bills
- Helping you increase your credit limit
- Helping you find missing money
- Helping you clean your credit report
Do not hesitate. Try DoNotPay today.