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That call you received from a collection agency may be a scam

A phone that continually rings is the last thing you want to hear if you have delinquent debts. A bad situation becomes worse when you discover that collection actions are actually an elaborate confidence game.

Many collection agencies already engage in aggressive tactics, including some that violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. However, a more sinister type of "collecting" so-called debts is far more sinister. Phony debt collectors are perpetrating scams on unwitting and oftentimes financially struggling consumers.

Individuals and companies posing as collection agencies are hard to detect. Fake collectors play on the real fears and anxieties that people have regarding delinquent mortgages, car loans, taxes and credit card bills. They use words just as "fraud," "crime," "arrest," and "lawsuit."

These con artists pose as not only as debt collectors, but also federal and local law enforcement agencies and the Internal Revenue Service. If you suspect that you are a target of these swindles, you need to protect yourself.

An illegitimate collection agency may raise several red flags that include:

  • Speaking in generalities without going into specifics regarding the debt and amount owed
  • Refusal to provide written evidence of the debt
  • Demand for immediate payment, refusing to allow you any time to make good on the debt
  • Impending service of a lawsuit
  • Refusal to accept various forms of payment
  • Threats of an arrest

You need to be proactive if you actually owe money. Do not ignore phone calls, written correspondence or court summons. If your financial problems are beyond what you can manage, contact a skilled and experienced bankruptcy attorney.

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