It can be stressful to receive calls from a collection agency – especially when there hasn’t been any progress made on repayment. Although the rules vary between provinces, collection agencies have the right to contact you regarding a legitimate debt. They do not have the right to use threatening language, become abusive, contact your employer (except for employment verification), or call during certain hours.
According to Canadian statute, collection agencies cannot “make frequent calls that constitute harassment.” However, even when collection agencies are following the rules, their calls can still be unfailingly systematic, unwanted and aggravating. Here are three ways to stop those pesky debt collection calls.
1. Cease and desist letter
In Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia, Alberta and Nova Scotia, consumers can legally request that a debt collector stop phoning them at home. A cease-and-desist letter can be written by anyone in Canada that is being aggressively pursued by a debt collector, and the letter can demand that the agency stop calling and have all further communication be in writing.
Consumers should make sure to keep a copy of the letter for their records and send the correspondence by certified or registered mail. They should be prepared for difficulties that may arise once the cease-and-desist letter has been received. These difficulties may include legal action to collect the debt, or the agency may allow the account to simply charge off. Either of these could cause damage to the customer’s credit for years to come.
Ultimately, while a cease-and-desist letter may stop the calls, it does not wipe away your debt.
2. Pay off debt
Paying off your debt is the best way to stop collection calls – although this may not always be possible. If this is the case, talk to the collection agency about a payment arrangement that won’t compromise paying your other debts and living expenses. For all payment arrangements made:
- Follow up all arrangements in writing, and when possible, enclose an initial good faith payment
- Never send cash
- Get a receipt for all payments
- Deal only with the collection agency and do not contact the original creditor
3. Seek out debt management solutions
If the collection agency will not accept your payment plan, a debt management program can help. In order to get into a debt management program, you’ll need to seek help from a credit counsellor. A credit counsellor will deal with all of your creditors on your behalf and work with them to come up with a plan for you to make one manageable payment each month, which is paid directly to the credit counselling agency.
You won’t receive any more collection calls, you’ll only have to make one single monthly payment, and oftentimes you’ll pay less or no interest. This means you can avoid bankruptcy or a consumer proposal, which can have long-term negative repercussions.
When seeking a credit counsellor, be sure to choose a trusted advisor like SolveYourDebts.com. Our not-for-profit status means we aren’t looking to make a buck off your financial challenges. We offer low-cost, impartial and professional services that put your needs first. We believe this is an essential ingredient in helping you solve your debts as quickly and painlessly as possible.
If you want to stop collection calls, it’s important to address your debt. Credit counselling can stop the calls, help you manage and eliminate debts, and avoid bankruptcy. If you are getting calls from collection agencies and need some advice, contact us today for a free consultation.