Some are worse than others. I get collection calls where I can simply say, "Not working, can't pay." And they hang up.
Then there are the ones that get on the phone and only have a mouth and no ears. No matter what I say, they keep pressing for a payment. No matter what they say, I do not have the ability to pay anything - not now or in the near future.
Some of the collections have been on the books long enough where they are starting to drastically cut the amount due on the account. Be careful. You have to know how to do this correctly or you will only cause yourself a bigger problem in the future.
If you are offered a reduced settlement amount, request that they send that to you in writing. It must also have the following language on the bill:
Payment of this bill settles my account in full. No other debt will be owed to the collection agency or the company that hired the agency.You need to sign this, copy it and file it away with a copy of the canceled check.
If you don't do this, the collection agency can take the settlement offer and leave you alone for a while. Years later, the original company that you owed the debt to can come back after you and say you only paid a portion of the debt. So protect yourself.
NEVER give your debit card or bank information over the phone to anyone. Do not pay with "check by phone" either. If you give up your bank info, they can go in there and suck your account dry to pay off your debt.
Collectors are ruthless. Most will hound you and hound you. They like to hint about legal action, but that in itself is illegal.
My favorite line by a collector was, "What if you didn't pay your cell phone bill and sent that money to us?"
I laughed so hard, then said, "If I don't pay my phone bill, you won't be able to call me anymore." Dumbass.
Collection is no fun. After you pay off a bill, check to make sure it has been removed from your credit report. Just because you paid the bill doesn't mean that it was removed from your credit report. Some collectors are sloppy about maintaining proper reporting.
All I can say is, if you are in collections, I wish you the best. No one wants to get into debt. Sometimes you just can't avoid it. And the calls keep coming. That's why I hate collection agencies.
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