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What do I do when a debt collection agency calls me? People who are late making payments on a loan, a credit card or other bills may eventually be contacted by a "debt collector," a third-party hired by the original lender. Dealing with a debt collector can be stressful. But be aware that if you are overdue on a bill and get contacted by a debt collector, the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act requires that you be treated fairly and without harassment. In general, the law prohibits certain unfair and deceptive collection practices. For example, the law prohibits a debt collector from calling you before 8 a.m. and after 9 p.m., unless you agree. The law requires a debt collector to stop contacting you if you make the request in writing. Also, within 30 days from the initial contact made by a debt collector, you have a right to dispute any of the debt you are told you owe. If you dispute the bill in writing, the debt collector can't contact you again to collect the money until you are provided with proof of the debt, such as a copy of a bill. If you have a problem with a debt collector, you can report it to your state Attorney General's office (listed in your local phone book or other directories) and the Federal Trade Commission (visit www.ftc.gov or call toll-free 1-877-FTC-HELP, which is 1-877-382-4357). Note that the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act covers debt collectors but not banks or others that lend the money initially. However, under federal law governing unfair or deceptive business practices, banks cannot engage in abusive behavior when trying to collect a debt. If you have a question or a concern about your bank's practices, contact its federal or state banking regulator. You have the right to file a complaint with the regulator if you believe the bank acted improperly or illegally. If you're not sure how to locate that regulator, you can contact the FDIC for guidance (see Sources of Help and Information on Managing Your Money). Also be on guard against scam artists who prey on people who are late paying their bills by offering to "help" by reducing or eliminating their debts.
Need a free reminder to pay bills? You can use our desktop software to remember
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Our reminder software is 100% free and works on your Windows computer desktop. Simply download, input your important dates and reminders will popup on your computer.
No doubt, our free bill payment reminder software can help you build and maintain good credit, because timely debt payments are paramount. Our service is 100% free, and works directly (and privately) on your Windows computer desktop. Take advantage of our software to remind you of bill due dates, birthdays, appointments, or to remind you of any important date.
You can set your account to send you daily, monthly, or even yearly reminders. Click the graphic above to download our reminder software today.
By using our free reminder software, you can save money by avoiding late payment fees and overlimit fees.
Can the bank delay the posting of a payment to my credit card account?
The general rule is that the bank must credit a payment to a customer’s account as of the date of receipt. The bank can set reasonable requirements for making payments.
Reasonable requirements include:
* Requiring that the account number or payment stub be provided with the payment,
* Specifying that only checks or money orders be sent by mail,
* Specifying that payment is to be made in US Dollars,
* Setting reasonable cut off times for payments received by mail, by electronic means, by telephone, and in person. The cut-off time must be 5 p.m. or later, except for in-person payments at branches that close prior to 5 p.m.
If the lender specified reasonable requirements on the billing statement, but accepts a payment that does not conform to those requirements, the lender must credit the payment within five days of receipt.
In general, payments made at a creditor’s Web site prior to the specified cut-off time would be considered timely.
You should review your statement and the account agreement to determine the bank's policies or contact the bank for an explanation.
Can the bank apply payments to the “purchase portion” of the account first and then to the cash advance balance?
As of February 22, 2010, there are new requirements in federal law. The bank must apply the amount paid in excess of the minimum payment to the balance with the highest interest rate. For example, if the highest interest rate applicable to your account applies to the cash advance balance, the amount of any payment you make in excess of the minimum payment would be applied to the cash advance balance.
There is an exception for deferred interest plans. A deferred interest plan is a payment plan that is typically offered at the time of purchase that permits a consumer to avoid interest charges if the purchase balance is paid in full by a certain date. Often, deterred interest plans are offered in connection with the sale of higher-priced goods, such as furniture or electronics.
For deferred interest plans:
* you may request to apply extra amounts to the deferred interest balance before other balances; and
* for the two billing cycles prior to the end of the deferred interest period, the credit card company must apply your entire payment in excess of the minimum payment amount to the deferred interest rate balance first.
Why wasn't my online payment credited to my account on the same day I made it?
The general rule is that the payment must be credited as of the date it is received.
The bank may set reasonable requirements for payments, including a cut-off time. The cut-off time on the payment due date generally must be 5 p.m. or later. Payments received after the established cut-off time will generally be credited as of the next business day. If the bank listed reasonable requirements for conforming payments on your billing statement, but accepted a payment you made that did not meet those requirements; the bank must credit the nonconforming payment within five days of receipt.
If the bank promoted electronic payment via their web site, then generally any payments made via the bank’s web site prior to the specified cut-off time would be considered a timely payment.
This month my due date falls on a Sunday. I mailed my credit card payment and it has not arrived there yet. If the payment is received on Monday, will it be considered as late?
If your payment due date falls on a weekend or a holiday when the lender does not accept or receive mailed payments, any mailed payments received by the lender before the cut off time on the following business day will be considered timely.
For example, if you mailed your payment via US Postal Service and the due date is Sunday March 14th, but the lender does not receive mail on Sundays, then your postal payment would be considered timely if it is received by Monday, March 15th, before 5 p.m.
However; it is important to note that:
* If the bank accepts or receives payments made on the due date by a method other than mail, such as an electronic payment; and
* You make your payment electronically;
Then your electronic payment must be received by the bank by the cut-off time on the due date (Sunday, March 14th) in order to be considered timely.
When is my credit card payment considered late? Whether a payment is considered late or not is generally determined by the terms of your account agreement. If you always ensure that your payment is received prior to the due date included on your statement, your payment will not be considered late.
The Credit CARD Act requires that if you mail your payment and the due date falls on a day when the lender does not accept or receive mailed payments, then a payment will be considered timely if it is received by the lender prior to the cut-off time on the next business day.
Review information was gleaned from the website, and is neither an endorsement by us nor an confirmation of content nor a warranty of any promises made by the website. Use the review information at your sole discretion and sole liability.
NationalDebtResolution.com Review - Copyright 2010 - All rights reserved - National Debt Resolution
Many working Americans need debt relief and the number is growing every day. Debt settlement is the quickest answer you may be looking for to reduce* credit card and other unsecured debts!
* Use debt settlement to reduce your balances
* Easily manage with one small monthly payment
* Alleviate creditor harrasament and let someone else do the work
* Save $100's of dollars in debt relief costs
National Debt Resolution has been helping good people like you discover debt relief for many years. From the first client we helped with debt settlement to the thousands of families now debt free since; we've grown to become the most trusted name in debt relief across the country.
National Debt Resolution has developed relationships with every major creditor in the United States; valuable relationships saving you thousands of dollars in outstanding balances when using our exclusive debt settlement service.
NDR is a member of IAPDA meaning we continually provide the relief you need and the satisfaction you deserve!
What Can Debt Settlement Do For You? After helping so many people in every kind of situation, we understand what you're up against and what it takes to help you break free. Here's what you'll enjoy with National Debt Resolution...
Imagine what you'll do with the money saved after getting out of the debt you're faced with now.
* Stop giving your paycheck to creditors and start watching your bank account grow.
* Get out from underneath the stress and start feeling free again.
* A viable alternative to bankruptcy*, costly legal battles without guilt or the bankruptcy stigma.
* Stay clear of consumer credit counseling keeping you in total control of your money.
Debt settlement is not consumer credit counseling. It is not intended for those consumers who do not know how to manage their money or pay their bills on time. It is simply a means of reducing or eliminating unsecured debt, an alternative to bankruptcy or other complications. It is considered to be the first step in seeking debt relief, because if you can avoid a 3rd party assisted option, you will get yourself back on your feet much more quickly and without a long term affect on your credit profile.
Because of this, the following things must happen…..and this is true of many debt settlement programs:
You must be delinquent on the accounts before your creditors will consider and recognize your hardship and negotiate your balances.
There’s no viable way around it. On a positive note, by eliminating the debt, you will be able to turn around your debt to income ratio and help restore your purchasing power.
Your creditors will not negotiate the balance until you have enough money to do so. This is a business transaction for them. Cash flow is important and they will typically require settlement payment within 24-36 hours.
Occasionally, a large balance will be negotiated over 3-4 payments, and in that case, the negotiation is started sooner. This is not typical, but there is a possibility is can happen.
Save, save, save... Typically, most settlements are estimated around 40% of what you owe, so you need to save that much BEFORE anyone can really start working on the balance. That’s why you’re put on a monthly savings plan.
This doesn’t mean that your creditors won’t know you are in the program; they will all be notified of your hardship and your intent to settle your balances just as soon as you start the program.
Often your settlement percentages may be lower than 40% of the balance owed, in which case any additional funds left in your settlement account will simply be saved for the next settlement.
It is not uncommon to complete your program earlier than expected because of our strong relationship with the creditors.
Balances will be settled one at a time. We begin with the smallest balance first, making sure that you gain confidence in the program by seeing the results right away.
Any reputable debt settlement companies will take the time to make sure that the program is suitable for your situation.
Flexibility is an important factor, due to the nature of “life”.
Communication is the key. We will make sure to work with you to complete the program, even if you should experience any additional hardship.
Your original creditor always has the legal right to contact you. There’s no way around this. Some creditors will ignore the limited power of attorney that is sent to them and will keep contacting you throughout the program. Some will respect that request to cease communications with you and will start communicating directly with your negotiator. Regardless, it is not your job to speak to them. It’s your job to communicate with your negotiator or customer service representative that you’re being contacted and by whom.
If and when the account has been charged off and sent to third party for collection, those calls will be easier to handle.
Once a settlement has been reached with your creditor, you must approve it. You will be notified of any settlement 50% or less. Of course, recommendations will be made, based on what is known about your account and your individual creditor. You have veto power at all times.
If you approve a settlement, an agreement will be obtained, in writing, from your creditor, detailing the agreement and how the transaction should be made. Once that transaction has been completed, a settlement in full (SIF) letter will be obtained, in order to document and confirm that you have settled and closed this account at zero balance and that the remaining balance has been forgiven.
National Debt Resolution, a division of NDR, Inc.
10000 N 31st Ave.Suite C-310
Phoenix, AZ 85051
Toll Free: (866) 553-3328