Many can’t help but resort to payday loans. Companies offer them easily and with minimal requirements. However, company agents can be quite the bulldogs when the deadline has lapsed and loans remain unpaid. Here’s what you should do to avoid payday loan harassment.
- Be consistent in paying back loans. As much as possible, do not resort to payday loans. They are convenient indeed, and do not require much from you, but you might find out that you’re biting off more than you can chew if you can’t afford to pay your loan back at the right time. It’s important that you have a stable, regular job that will keep you afloat and capable of paying small-time loans. If the company notices that you have a disciplined record of paying loans on time, they won’t likely be calling on someone to stalk you day and night.
- Ask family and friends for financial help. We all know that everyone has his share of financial responsibilities. But in times when we are stuck in a rut or up to our necks in debt, family and close friends are usually the first ones willing to help us without requiring interest or anything in return. Ask someone you trust nicely, emphasizing that you will be grateful and pay back the money or return the favor in some way. For some people, asking for help (especially financial help) may be embarrassing, but it wouldn’t hurt to try. You never know, there just might be someone close who has the means and the desire to help you out.
- Ask for an extended loan. When signing up for a payday loan, you can choose between a short-term loan and a long-term loan. Short-term loans require the client to pay in two weeks’ time. Do not choose this if you are sure that you cannot pay back the loan within two weeks. If you have a stable, regular job, assure the loan company that you can pay after an extended period of time, including the interest attached to that extended time period.
- Pay your debt in small amounts. You can pay in small amounts as soon as you have the money to spare. It might not be much, but small efforts like this will assure the company that you have the intention to complete the payment of your debt. And it will keep you far from being a candidate or a target for harassing phone calls.
- Write a letter to the company. According to the Fair Debt Collection Practice Act, if you are harassed by an agent of the company, it is your right to send a letter to that company asking their representative to stop calling and harassing you. The company should recognize that once they receive a letter from you, they should stop all calls and harassment. However, they can still send you a notice through mail.
- Record any malicious or harassing phone calls. If one day you just start receiving threats or malicious phone calls and voice mail, be quick on your feet and record them. Look for these signs: the agent curses at you or insults you, he uses disrespectful or foul language, he threatens to do something to you if you don’t pay soon, he calls you many times within a day, or he physically stalks you at your neighborhood or office. These can be grounds for a harassment suit should the situation grow worse and you decide to take it to court.
Anyone can file for a loan, and it’s inevitable that there are some people who can’t pay on time. But that does not make one automatically a target for harassment. Be responsible and pay your loans, but at the same time, know your rights and fight back when they’re violated.