ARE BC BILL COLLECTION AGENCIES OR BILL COLLECTORS MAKING YOUR LIFE MISERABLE?
BILL COLLECTORS CANNOT HARASS YOU. HERE IS HOW TO STOP THEM
Always keep copies of all documents, correspondence, emails so you can prove your complaint.
Anything you tell a bill collector will be used against you
BC GOVERNMENT HELP FOR CONSUMERS
Understand your rights and obligations around debt collection practices in BC and find out what you can do if you have a problem or complaint about debt collection activities.
Know Your Rights
The following is from the Consumer Protection BC department
Consumer Protection BC enforces debt collection laws in BC.
If you are being contacted by a collection agency and you reside in BC, here are some tips to help you understand what is and what isn’t permitted under the British Columbia Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act.
BC Collection agencies can:
- contact a debtor at their place of employment to obtain the debtor's home address or phone number
- make one attempt to contact the debtor when they have not been able to reach them at home
- contact the debtor’s employer to confirm their employment, business title and business address
- contact the debtor’s family, friends or employer in an attempt to obtain their home address or phone number;
- call between the hours of 7 am and 9 pm, Monday to Saturday, at the debtor's local time;
- call on a Sunday between the hours of 1 pm and 5 pm at the debtors local time; and
- take legal action against a debtor.
BC Collection agencies cannot:
- call you on a statutory holiday;
- continue to contact you if the debt has been properly disputed;
- collect or try to collect without being holding a valid debt collection agent license;
- place a collect call to a debtor ;
- ask that money be sent in a way that would cost the debtor money
- continue telephone contact if the debtor has properly requested communication in writing;
- give the debtor a document that is made to look like an official court document when it isn't.
#307-3450 Uptown Blvd
PO Box 9244
Victoria, British Columbia V8W 9J2
Toll Free: 1-888-564-9963
THREATS OF LEGAL ACTION
If the collection agency or what appears to be their legal staff make written or verbal threats of legal action, have a lawyer send you a `draft` statement of claim or use other shady tactics report them to the Law Society of British Columbia. However you should never trust a law society to actually help you.
Privacy Commissioner of Canada
If a collection agency discloses your personal information to a 3rd party or is incorrectly reporting something on your credit bureau, make sure to contact this department to discuss the matter.
YOU MAY HAVE A VALID COMPLAINT AGAINST A BC COLLECTION AGENCY IF YOU CAN PROVE ANY OF THE FOLLOWING HAVE OCCURRED
- You have disputed the debt with the debt collector and creditor and continue to be contacted
- You have informed the collection agency that it is not your debt and continue to be contacted
- You have asked to be contacted in writing only and they continue to call
- Collector was threatening and/or intimidating
- Collector was using excessive pressure
- Collector published or threatening to publish your inability to pay
- I did not receive anything in writing prior to receiving calls
- Collector will not disclose his/her identity
- Collector called you at work more than once and you have provided my home contact information
- The collector has called an acquaintance and has asked for information other than your home address and phone number and you have not authorized the collector or creditor to do so in the past
- The collector has called your employer and has asked for more information other than confirming your employment, business title, and address and you have not authorized the creditor to do so in the past
- The collector has called you before 7 am or after 9 pm Monday to Saturday, or before 1 pm or after 5 pm on a Sunday, or on a statutory holiday
- The collector is attempting to collect more than you owe
This is not legal advice, it is information