Received a Debt Collection Letter?

If you have received a debt collection letter – DON’T PANIC! It’s nothing personal, they are usually automatically generated and the first step in the debt collection process. However, just because it’s not urgent, you definitely shouldn’t ignore it.

  • Confirm the Debt
    • Whether or not you owe not you owe the debt it is up to the debt collector to prove that you are the correct person and that the amount you owe is also correct. Therefore ask them for the documents before you take any responsibility for the debt.
  • Make an Arrangement
    • Once the debt collector has proven the debt and provided you with all of the information you requested, it’s time to make a deal. Debt collectors almost always have ‘wiggle room’ in what they can accept, which means that they will often accept a lesser amount than you actually owe. If you can pay back your debt in a lump sum, then you have more room to manoeuvre, and could get yourself quite a good deal. If you can’t pay it all back in one go, try to come to a realistic arrangement with the debt collection agency regarding when and how much to repay.
  • Slow Down
    • Don’t hurry into paying the debt no matter what the letter says. If you start payment straight away, this is considered proof that the debt is yours.
  • Keep Everything
    • You should keep all correspondence between yourself and the debt collectors. Keep all letters, emails, and a list of all phone calls and who you spoke to. This can be useful if the debt collector breaks one of their rules and you need to consult the FCA or a solicitor.
  • You Have Rights Too
    • Even if the debts are yours, there are rules regarding how debt collectors can collect it from you. Debt collectors cannot mistreat, harass, or abuse you when making contact. The cannot call you at unreasonable times or at your place of work. These are your legal rights, and should a debt collector break them, you can make a complaint through the Financial Ombudsman, or even hire a solicitor to sue them for a violation of your rights.