What do I do if a debt collector is calling me on something I know nothing about?

by Cindy

Recently a debt collector has been calling me about owing money to a phone company that I have never had business with. They are saying that I owe them $1,000 when I have never had an account with them. How can I fix this?

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Mar 08, 2010
debt collection for bill you don't owe
by: Gerri


Thanks for submitting your debt collection question on our Q&A page.

Your situation is not at all uncommon. Fortunately, you do have rights. The first thing I would recommend you do is read the first chapter of Debt Collection Answers online for free.

Pay careful attention to the section that talks about what to do if you are contacted by a debt collector. You can request written verification of the debt, and then you can dispute the debt.

If you are confident you don't owe it, you can send the debt collector a cease and desist letter telling them that you don't believe you owe it, and instructing them not to contact you again. It's pretty straightforward, and we go into greater detail on all these topics in our ebook as well.

I would also encourage you to check your credit reports with all three agencies to make sure this debt isn't on your credit reports. If it is, dispute it right away, keeping copies of your correspondence for your records.

Finally, make sure you are keeping good records of every contact you have with the debt collector. Keep that file of information indefinitely in case this collector gives up and sells the debt to another collection agency.

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