General Contractor hired Collection Agency

by Steven

A collection agency recently called to inform me that a general contractor I recently hired is trying to collect on money owed. I do not owe the contractor money however he owes subcontractors money. He is trying to get me to pay for this overage. How do I approach to the collection agency to explain this to them? Should I avoid all contact?

Comments for General Contractor hired Collection Agency

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Jul 13, 2010
General Contractor Hired Debt Collector
by: Mary

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

I would not ignore the debt collector's efforts to get in touch with you. Instead, I would ask the debt collector to provide you with written proof of the debt that your former contractor says that you owe. You are entitled to that information according to the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Although you can ask for written verification of your debt over the phone, I strongly recommend that if you do, you follow up immediately with a written request and that you send your request via certified mail with a return receipt requested.

If the debt collector responds with written proof, but you feel it's inadequate or you do not understand it, contact the debt collector again and ask for a clearer accounting. If the debt collector does not respond to your request for the proof or to your request for a clearer accounting, get in touch with a local consumer law attorney who handles debt collection issues.

Assuming that the debt collector provides you with the information you ask for and that you continue to believe that you do not owe the debt, send the collector a letter explaining that you do not owe the money and why and back up your argument by attaching to your letter copies of all information you may have that proves that you do not owe the money. Again, send everything via certified mail with a return receipt requested.

If you are unable to resolve your problem on your own or if the debt collector threatens you with a lawsuit, get in touch with a consumer law attorney in your area right away. Find out how to get FREE or low cost legal advice about debt collection from a consumer law attorney here.

I also strongly suggest that you consider purchasing a copy of Debt Collection Answers, the e-book about consumers' debt collection rights that I wrote with Gerri Detweiler. It's available as a download on this site. You can read read the first chapter of Debt Collection Answers online for free.

Please share what happens with your situation in the comments section for this question. We are very interested in hearing how this turns out for you, and your experience can help others who are struggling with debt collectors.

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