What happens when you get a bill from a company that you never heard of, for a service or product you don’t recognize, for an amount that the company refuses to justify?
You’ve probably become the victim of a debt-buying company. These companies often scoop up old debts for pennies on the dollar and then use aggressive — or illegal — tactics to pursue debtors.
Your first introduction to a debt might be the notice that you’re being sued for a debt you don’t recognize — although some of these companies will fraudulently claim to notify debtors via a process server and then proceed against them in court anyhow.
Since the debtors don’t know to show up to the court proceedings, the debt collection agency can get a default judgment against the debtor, allowing them to use their most aggressive tactics: wage garnishments, liens on real estate and more damaging information added to a credit report.
Ever since mid-2016, debt collectors in Wisconsin have had more leeway to collect than ever before, because the bill known as AB 117 allows the industry to proceed with collection efforts with no more proof of the debt than the outstanding amount owed by the borrower.
There’s no reason to put up with creditor harassment or let debt buyers make your life miserable. An experienced attorney who handles consumer debt issues can help you get out from under the burdens imposed by these collection actions through a variety of measures:
— Chapter 7 bankruptcy
— Chapter 13 bankruptcy
— Chapter 128 repayment plans
— Debt settlement plans
Once you hire legal representation, you effectively end the debt buyer’s ability to harass you. A debt buyer will have to deal with your attorney rather than contacting you directly. For many clients, that removes the intimidation and fear factors that debt collectors rely on in order to push people into payments they can’t afford.
Taking legal action, like filing for bankruptcy, can also stop any garnishments or judgments from proceeding. We offer more information on how to stop debt collection on our website.