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Debt Recovery: How to Defend Yourself Against Illegal Behavior

Credit Recovery: phone calls and unwelcome visits

A word that resembles a trauma. It has always been associated with negative situations and in the collective imagination it attracts unfriendly subjects. Of course, fortunately, these are now images linked only to memories of the past. This work is done with today, with diligence and professionalism by many people.

It is a respectable and fundamental profession for economic balance, not only for those who provide credit, but for all businesses in general. In 2016 there were about 1200 companies active in Italy in this sector.

However, even today, there are those who force the hand a little.

You will know that their insistence is proverbial, although legitimate within certain limits. Moreover, although in good faith and supported by valid reasons, the position of the debtor is that of someone who is wrong. So there is a little insistence. Moreover, the majority of those working in debt collection companies are paid commissions and earn to the extent that they can recover. This is basically the reason why sometimes you go beyond certain limits.

Debt collection lives on commissions

And today for those who make debt collection, especially for the debt collector who makes home visits, it is hard to bring results.

In some cases, the same debt collector who comes to ask you for the account of the car installments, which you have not paid, when he returns home, finds the letter of another debt collector who asks him for an account of the overdraft he has in the bank…

This inevitably produces in some the temptation to use unorthodox systems to recover as much as possible.

In our experience we have cataloged different behaviors and stratagems aimed at making the debtor pay.

Some are only the fruit of the zeal of a zealous recuperator, others are real offenses, sometimes even criminally liable. Knowing how to recognize them, can help you defend yourself and in the most serious cases report them.

Here are some incorrect behaviors of those who make debt collection:

Use terms that recall the authority of the institutional figures employed by the law. Some present themselves as ” tax collector” or “out-of-court prosecutor”, perhaps showing the identification card saying that it is the “public safety license”.

“I have to notify you of an out-of-court procedure” is the phrase that some debt collectors often pronounce and it is precisely to fear that it is a real legal action. Some, succeeding in entering the house of the scared debtor, bring out a stock of scheme on which to list the goods that they see in the house.

Naturally it is only a simulation, aimed at making people understand that in case they do not pay, those goods will be subject to seizure. In this case, it is enough to recognize the fact that we are faced with a subject that has no authority, but is simply trying to recover a credit.

When there is the usurpation of public functions.

Not being a bailiff, you are not required to welcome him at home nor listen to him if you don’t want to or can’t. If otherwise it qualifies as a judicial officer and claims to enter the house, when in reality it is not, then it is liable to be reported.

Use documents that recall institutional sources, with symbols that can recall their functions.

Leave messages to the debtor on green postcards, similar to those used to notify deeds, or show bound documents as if they were court documents with lots of round stamps or symbols that recall justice is another bad habit of some who want to recover at all costs.

Judicial documents are notified as such and do not arrive as simple registered or deposited in boxes. Such behavior can be reported to the authorities and in particular to the Privacy Guarantor.

Tell the debtor that he will be seized a few days later if he fails to pay.

“Mrs! If you do not pay within this week Monday at 8.00 o’clock the bailiff will arrive to foreclose everything! “Often those who make these statements do not even know what the procedures that lead to a foreclosure are. In any case, certain conditions must occur before a seizure. The debtor must have received the judicial documents in good time, and assuming he has not opposed them, months pass, if not years from the first unpaid installments. As long as it occurs.

So if you have not paid two or three installments of the loan or the loan it is completely unlikely to be seized in such a short time.

The telephone operator or debt collector is only forcing his hand to make you pay at all costs.

Make it clear that there will be an “immediate” withholding from the paycheck or pension with the attachment of the fifth.

The same is true as we said above in relation to movable property, foreclosure is the last act of a long process and is not obvious. Furthermore, it is not an irrevocable action. Although it is the most likely, when you are not paying a debt, especially a financial one, it is not necessarily the case. The conditions and convenience to do so must exist on the part of the creditor. Even in this case, months or years pass from the first unpaid deadlines. And it is always possible to find resolutive agreements.

Threaten the sale of the house at auction.

As with foreclosure or salary the process is complex and subject to various factors. The threat of selling the auction house certainly constitutes a strong element of pressure for those who are already scared or worried about a difficult situation. The most unscrupulous operators could use this emotional lever to get paid. Here too the above is true, with the difference that in this case the times are even longer. The creditor, if not against significant amounts, will always prefer to find another type of agreement rather than foreclosing a home. The judicial procedures cost a lot. And they must be advanced by the creditor, who will pay back to the debtor.

Threatening foreclosure of the house due to the unpaid installments of the vacuum cleaner is like killing a mosquito with a rifle.

Threaten the administrative arrest of the car or the seizure.

The administrative restraint of the car can be available only by those who are authorized to demand sanctions, taxes or duties on behalf of the municipalities, regions or the state.

The seizure is consequent to the violation of the detention (not always) or of other kinds of crimes.

Never any private person can block the circulation of a vehicle.

The car can be foreclosed, like all registered movable property, but all judicial practice must have been developed. (Read more >>> injunction >>> precept >>> attachment ).

Threaten the debtor by saying that he will end up in jail.

This is part of the cosmic nonsense of the improvised who does not even know how to do his job. At the most, not paying a debt can be considered a civil offense. But, at least for now, in Italy, you don’t end up in jail for your debts. The only exception is the entrepreneur who commits the crime of bankruptcy, especially if it is fraudulent, following a bankruptcy. But we’re talking about something else. Certainly not of the gas cooker or motocross bike installment.

Make it clear that there will be a bankruptcy procedure.

The bankruptcy is attributable only to some categories of debtors, and in particular it relates to entrepreneurial activities.

Furthermore there are dimensional requirements or thresholds below which one cannot be declared bankrupt. (see here >>> who can fail? )

Needless to say, if you are an employee the threat of failure should only make you laugh.

Communicate to other personal information.

The common threat to inform family members of the existence of a debt of which they are not guarantors or co-obliged, in order to entice the debtor to pay, is not only petty but completely illegal.

As specified by the Guarantor:
Anyone who processes personal data in the context of debt collection activities must observe the principle of lawfulness in processing: this precept is violated by the behavior (implemented by some economic operators) consisting in unjustifiably communicating to subjects with respect to the debtor (such, for example, family members, cohabitants, work colleagues or neighbors), information relating to the condition of non-fulfillment in which the person concerned is paying (behavior sometimes required to exercise undue pressure on the debtor in order to obtain payment of the amount due)
– Article 2, paragraph 1, Privacy Guarantor Provision 30 November 2005

It is a serious violation of privacy and can be challenged by promoting a warning against the perpetrator. With lots of damages.

Visits to work or home at inappropriate times.

Unfortunately, unlike what we read in the replies on the various forums of self-styled debt management experts, visits by home-based debt collectors are permitted. Naturally, everything must be carried out according to the rules of conduct established by the code of civil procedure for the visits of bailiffs. In relation to the time for notifications, Article 147 of the Civil Procedure Code states as follows: Notifications cannot be made before 7 am and after 9 pm. The recovery companies that operate correctly, adhere to a self-regulation code drawn up in accordance with various consumer associations.

Also use this information to learn how to defend yourself

Know already in advance, that if you try to defend yourself, saying that you will turn to a Debt Agency, the debt collection operators will reply that it is useless and that it is useless because these agencies do nothing.

In fact they steal your money. If you tell him you have a friend who has reduced his debts by 60% thanks to one of these agencies, they will tell you that it is impossible.

If you talk to him about the “Law 3 Save Suicides” they will tell you it costs a bang, which you don’t need in your case and that both courts reject them all. This is also false.

The law 3 saves suicides is having more and more support.

in fact, both operators in the sector and the courts are beginning to improve their use in favor of resolving even very complex situations. Such as for example the scrapping of tax bills, where very interesting applications of the law are being found.

Of course there will be further developments, but the possibility, for example, of seeing a reduction of up to 40% and beyond the tax bills, being able to pay in installments over even the standard 120 months is undoubtedly interesting.

An additional defense tool to counter debt collection activities

You must know that when your loans are subject to dispute, due to contractual anomalies, recovery activities must be suspended.

Until the question about the dispute raised is clarified, obviously with a written complaint, directly to the bank or to the finance company or through recourse to the ABF (Financial banking arbitrator) nobody should bother you.

In case of intervention by the debt recovery, it will be enough to make them aware of the fact that there is a dispute, better if by registered mail. One for the financial and one for the recovery company. Since this is a complex matter, obviously to carry out this type of operation and to check if your financing contracts present anomalies, you need specialized assistance.

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