How to deal with Bill Collectors in Canada
If you are receiving calls from a collection agency, it’s likely because you have an unpaid debt. Collection agencies must follow strict rules when collecting unpaid bills from individuals in Canada. The key to dealing with collection agencies is to know your rights and keep everything in writing.
DO ANSWER THE PHONE.
- Never ignore a bill collector’s call. It may seem like the easiest way to deal with an annoying situation, but you can’t avoid bill collectors by ignoring them. They’ll keep calling until you answer and move on to another person in your life, such as your family or friends. Additionally, many collectors have ways of tracking down people who don’t want to be found (it’s not always legal), so it’s better not to take any chances.
- Plan what you’ll say before you pick up the phone. Sometimes it helps to have a script prepared in advance so that when they ask why they haven’t received payment yet or what happened with their last check-in call, there won’t be a pause while you think about how best to respond; instead, there will only be time for them speak before answering questions yourself!
DON’T be coerced into making partial payments that you cannot afford.
- Don’t be coerced into making partial payments that you cannot afford. If a collector is pressuring you to make a payment, they are trying to get you to pay more than what is fair.
- Make sure that any payments made are affordable so that the debt will be settled within your means, rather than being added onto and continuing to grow as time passes (and interest accrues).
Feel free to ask the company to send you a breakdown of the amounts outstanding, including interest and penalties, if any.
If you’re having trouble paying a bill, it’s okay to ask the company for more information about what you owe. You can ask for an itemized breakdown of all charges and interest, if applicable. This way, you’ll know what exactly is going on with your debt and how much money is outstanding.
If there are additional charges that have been added to your bill (such as late or missed payment fees), these should also be included in the breakdown.
You may ask for a written notice of the debt and evidence that the creditor is the rightful owner of the debt.
- You may ask for a written notice of the debt and evidence that the creditor is the rightful owner of the debt.
- You should not pay a bill until you receive a written notice of the debt and evidence that the creditor is the rightful owner of the debt.
BE VERY CAREFUL and suspicious of any collection agency asking to “verify your personal information”.
You should be very careful and suspicious when a collection agency asks to “verify your personal information”, especially if they are asking for the following:
- Your date of birth.
- Your social insurance number.
- Any other identification numbers (like driver’s license numbers).
These types of questions are frequently used by criminals to steal your identity. If this happens to you, contact the police immediately and report the situation to them as well as contact Equifax Canada immediately at 1-866 828-5961 or report it on their website at https://www.equifax.ca 1-800-465-7166. After making a language selection, say “fraud” or press 3
Do not offer personal identification information or make any payment until you are certain the agency is legitimate.
- give out personal information, including your address and phone number.
- make any payments or authorize a payment to the agency without first verifying its legitimacy.
- give out credit card or bank account information.
Many agencies are NOT willing to negotiate repayment plans that you can afford.
If you are in a situation where you are unable to pay back the full amount of your debt, there are options available to help you get on track. Many agencies are NOT willing to negotiate repayment plans that you can afford. However, some will work with their clients and may accept partial payments based on income or other factors.
The collection agency may be willing to negotiate repayment terms if they feel it is in their best interest or if they have been getting paid too little for too long (depending on how much time has passed). If this does not work out, then there may still be hope by contacting the creditor directly.
If speaking with the creditor doesn’t resolve things either, then it’s time for legal action! You should always seek legal advice before proceeding with any type of lawsuit against anyone or any entity because it could end up costing thousands more than originally expected just due solely to court costs alone without even considering lawyer fees yet!
You may prefer to propose a repayment plan in writing that you know you can afford and get them to agree in writing BEFORE you pay anything.
You may prefer to propose a repayment plan in writing that you know you can afford and get them to agree in writing BEFORE you pay anything. You can also request that they send proof of your debt, such as an invoice or statement, as this will help verify their claim. If they refuse to do so, it’s likely that they are not legitimate and should be ignored.
If you are not satisfied with their response, consider filing a complaint with your provincial regulator.
If you are not satisfied with the collector’s response and think that your consumer rights have been violated, consider filing a complaint with your provincial regulator. The provincial regulators are responsible for enforcing consumer protection laws in Canada and can investigate allegations of unfair practices and unlawful conduct on behalf of consumers. Many provincial regulators also provide information about how to file a complaint online or over the phone. For more information about how to file a complaint, visit the Office of the Privacy Commissioner website at https://www.priv.gc.ca/en/
Collection agencies must follow strict rules when collecting unpaid bills from individuals in Canada
- Collection agencies must be registered with the government.
- Collection agencies must follow certain rules when collecting unpaid bills from individuals in Canada.
- Collection agencies must follow the laws of the province in which they are registered. For example, a collection agency based in Ontario must abide by all of Ontario’s consumer protection laws, including those that require collection agencies to provide written notice before contacting you (except where they have no choice but to contact you).
At the end of the day, if you want to deal with bill collectors in Canada, it’s best not to ignore them. The only way that an agency can legally collect money from you is by using their collection process and following the rules laid out by provincial regulators. In many cases, they will try whatever they can think of to get money from you, but ultimately this means that if they can’t reach an agreement on a payment plan then there isn’t much else left for them to do except give up trying to collect altogether or take legal action against you for repayment of all owed amounts plus interest and penalties.
For more information on how CCDR can help you reach out to us at 888-354-4706 from anywhere in Canada or visit us online at www.ccdr.ca
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