A debt collector is a person who works under a debt collection agency, and whose main purpose is to ensure creditors get the money they are owed from the people they lent that money to.
If you have borrowed money but have fallen behind on paying your instalments, the creditor can approach a debt collection agency who are then tasked with reclaiming that sum from you.
But there are rules and regulations debt collectors must follow when they attempt to get in touch with you.
These rules are mostly the same across the different provinces in Canada.
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What are the rules and regulations debt collectors must follow if they want to contact you?
A debt collector has to follow codes and guidelines and cannot act in an arbitrary manner.
If a debt collection agency wants to contact you in order to recover finances, they must first send you a letter that contains the name of person or organisation you borrowed the sum from, the amount that was borrowed, as well as necessary contact details regarding the transaction.
The letter will be sent through registered mail.
Debt collection agencies must send you a physical document and not an e-mail.
The reason behind this is that once you sign for the registered mail, they will be able to confirm that you have received their letter.
Once a debt collection agency has sent you a registered mail, they have to wait six days before they can try to contact you again.
The collection agency may call your place of employment to confirm whether you work there or not, but they cannot disclose the details of your financial situation at your place of work.
Similarly, debt collectors cannot reach out to your family and friends regarding your debt.
The only scenario where this does not apply is when the money borrowed was done so jointly by two people or more.
In this situation, the collection agency will reach out to all the parties involved in the exchange.
At what time can you expect debt collection agencies to visit you or call you?
Debt collection agencies can only send collection agents to visit your home within 7am to 9pm, Mondays through Saturdays, and between 1pm to 5pm on Sundays.
They cannot reach out to you or contact you during a national holiday.
In addition to this, they are only allowed to contact you a maximum of three times in a week, including conversations over the phone.
This is why it is not recommended that you avoid phone calls from debt collection agencies.
If you do so, they can keep calling you until they have spoken to you regarding the situation.
A debt collection agency makes income by taking a commission on the amount the creditor is due, or in the form of a fee.
In case you feel as if there has been a mistake, you can send a registered letter to the debt collection agency informing them of the same, and ask them to take the matter to Court.
You can alternatively also hire a lawyer to communicate with the debt collection agency for you.
Should there be any mistake and you do not owe money to anyone, you can send a registered letter explaining your situation to the debt collection agency.
Debt collectors have to work within these set rules to recover debt for their clients.