There has been a change in the way collectors do business because of voice mails and caller id. Before we had these technological aids, when the phone rang we pretty much answered it. After all, it might be a close friend or a family member who we wanted to talk to. But sometimes it was a debt collector. When debt collectors get people on the phone they often can convince (sometimes legally sometimes illegally) to pay the debt.
But now with caller id if we don’t know the person calling we can “just let it go to voicemail” which makes it more difficult for debt collectors to get consumers on the phone. When it goes to voicemail we can easily erase it. (Please note we will have a post talking about rampant violations with voice mails by debt collectors in a day or two but for now we will put aside the illegality of most voice mails). We don’t have to call the collectors back.
So, the bottom line of this is that collection agencies feel that they must take drastic steps to get us on the phone. Remember, collectors want a payment or a promise to pay. How do they get consumers on the phone who “screen” their calls or “just let it go to voicemail”? Simple. Call neighbors. Call family members (particularly ex spouses). Call co-workers. When abusive collectors do this they get results. Immediately.
When your ex spouse calls you telling you about how the collectors are calling him or her, then that gets an immediate response. The same is true when neighbors and co-workers come up to us telling us about a call they received – “a very important private matter”. Everyone knows this means a collection call. Everyone also wonders if the collector will do this, then what else will this collector do?
Again, all of this is designed to get a call back. And to get us in an emotional state where we won’t think clearly and therefore can be intimidated into paying a bill that we may not owe.
If you have faced this, please get with us or another experienced consumer attorney as these “third party contacts” are some of the more nasty dirty tricks that abusive debt collectors use. When they use them, the abusive collection agencies should be sued and you should receive the money damages that you are entitled to receive.
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