How To Start Debt Collection
How To Start Debt Collection
by Paul Easton
Debt Collector is a person who works on behalf of the creditor being the person or company that provides either goods or services as being their primary business. As the name suggests, the person collects the debts for a creditor that have fallen overdue and outside of credit terms agreed to previously. Naturally, the debt collector will have full authority and becomes a shadow of the creditor and accounts department of that business.
In today's business environment a debt collector is a professional unbiased third party that can often assist to resolve issues between the Debtor and the creditor as they are not emotionally involved. This in most instances can lead to a mutual resolution and agreed payment with out court action which enables both parties to move on.
Often companies are concerned whether employing a debt collector will be expensive or upset their customers. A debt collector in most instances will work on a commission basis and must collect the money to get paid so they must be effective and know what they are doing to get results including most laws that are involved in businesses daily operations. If additional services are provided such a tracing a debtor, legal services or service of legal documents these are additional but be should not be expended without their client's approval.
In many instances where company's have formal credit applications these should contain clauses that allow these collection charges to legally be passed onto the debtor so it can make the costs related to collection quite minimal.
The cost of the money outstanding to a business can far outweigh the costs of collection and if not dealt with quickly are often lost through inaction or half hearted promises by the debtor to pay and gets so old it's uncollectable.
Chasing overdue debt can be a daunting task particularly for those that have never had to do it before or hate to do it and do such a poor job, do not achieve the desired results. The time required to chase overdue debts can distract resources in the business away from what they should be doing which is generating further profitable business. Professional Debt Collectors will save headaches, considerable time, and money as debtors are often evasive and simply disappear to avoid their creditors. Their experience in dealing with debt situations daily across many types of businesses provides a great deal of experience in achieving the required result
There are rare occasions when even a professional debt collector fails to collect the Debt. This can be due to a large number of reasons not least where a company has gone into liquidation or a person becomes bankrupt. In that case, the debt collector would be able to advise what the next step would be and if unable to provide the required service should be able to direct you to the appropriate organisation that could assist.
One thing that should be remembered is that just because you have retained the service of a debt collector does not mean they can collect the debt, there are no guarantees, after all, you are dealing with people who often do the unexpected or simply had no intention to pay at the outset.
In most instances over due amounts collected are in full payment but often there are debtors who need to pay an account off. This should always be considered and is a lot better than having to write the Funds off or expend further expense trying to get the full amount through court action only to be instructed by a court that the repayment is acceptable. A debt collector should be able to manage the debtor to ensure those payments as agreed are made on time. They can also help to secure the position better if required by obtaining additional security documents from a debtor prior to making such repayment agreements.
Choosing the right debt collector is very important and you must do your homework when looking to make that appointment for the business. Ask for references of companies they do business with and ask such question as 'If the debtor pays the debt collector how soon does the debt collector return the money to the client? Experience is also critical as this will determine the debt collectors success and is rarely found in junior collectors.
It is important to make the decision to retain a debt collector in the early stages while the debt is still 'Fresh" and makes the chance of getting recovery a great deal higher. Should other persons need to be contacted to establish any facts about the debt they are still likely to be there to assist in the resolution process and does not allow the debtor to have conveniently forgotten about it. In addition you put a debtor on notice you are serious about recovering those overdue funds.
The statute of limitations on debts in New Zealand is 6 years which is really quite a long time and it is suggested if you have left it that long it will be extremely difficult to collect if at all.
From the perspective of the Debtor, they often believe that debt collector may not be equipped with adequate knowledge but today's debt collectors are a very different breed armed with an arsenal of skills experience and resources. Debt collectors can affect an individual's credit record but are reluctant to do so and this can be avoided when a debtor is prepared to cooperate in resolving the problem.
To minimise you over due debts - CREDIT CHECK your potential customer.
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