What Are Creditors Allowed to Do?
If you don’t have a formal agreement in place, then creditors have the right to contact you in order to collect money they are owed. They can send you letters, phone you, or even come to your home to speak to you.
However, there are certain rules they have to follow. If they treat you in a way that breaks any laws then you have every right to complain.
However, they have to act within the law and treat you fairly. If they don’t, you can make a complaint. We’ve included some rules which creditors regularly break:
- Creditors cannot call you at work if you haven’t given them permission to do so.
- They are not allowed to share information about your debt with family members, colleagues or employers.
- If they phone you in unsociable hours, like early morning or late at night.
- They cannot suggest you borrow more money to pay off what you owe to them.
- They have to speak to debt management agencies like us, and they have to give you some ‘breathing space’ when they know you have reached out to an agency.
- Your creditors cannot use social media to chase you for payments.
- They don’t have the right to take your money without your permission.
- Their letters cannot be disguised as official court forms.
- Creditors must use simple language where possible and should not deliberately attempt to confuse or mislead you.
- If you tell them you don’t have the money they cannot ignore you.
- All contact has to be suspended when you are in the process of disputing a debt.
- It is illegal for creditors to pretend they have legal powers that they do not.
- They cannot add charges that exceed the cost of collecting the debt.
- Creditors must give you any information about your account that you ask for.
- If has been decided by law that the creditor is out of time and can no longer legally pursue a debt, they have to stop contacting you.
- When creditors phone you, they don’t have to be especially nice, but they cannot be abusive or intimidating.
- Loan sharks, or in other words, lenders without a credit license, are pursuing you for money then you should seek out professional or legal advice straight away.
If a creditor is breaking any of these rules, then it is important you get in touch with us straight away. We can help to put this behaviour to an end and make sure that they are complying with the law. Just because you owe them money does not mean they can mistreat you.
What to Do When Creditors Are Harassing You
Make sure to keep a record of creditor activity. If you have, for example, notes of when they have called at an unreasonable hour, or when they have called you at work, or even when they have pretended to have powers at their disposal which they don’t have, a written record can be invaluable when it comes to making a complaint.
For help with creditors or more information, call 0800 808 5142.