Letter from Debtor to Collection Agent (England and Wales)

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A debtor is a person that has an obligation to pay a debt to a creditor. This debt may be for such things as a car or personal loan, medical bills, rent or credit card charges. Occasionally a debtor may fall behind in his repayment and the creditor may employ a third party to recover the debt often referred to as debt collectors or collection agencies. While debt collectors are allowed to contact you, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) had guidelines regarding debt collection practices. This Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency is a communication to a collection agency or debt collector that demands they cease and desist communicating with you regarding payment of a debt.

This lawyer-prepared packet contains:
  1. General Information
  2. Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency for use in England and Wales
Law Compliance: This form complies with the laws of England and Wales
This is the content of the form and is provided for your convenience. It is not necessarily what the actual form looks like and does not include the information, instructions and other materials that come with the form you would purchase. An actual sample can also be viewed by clicking on the "Sample Form" near the top left of this page.












Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency
(England and Wales)











This Packet Includes:
1. General Information
2. Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency






General Information
Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency

Overview

A debtor is a person that has an obligation to pay a debt to a creditor.  This debt may be for such things as a car, a personal loan, medical bills, rent or a credit card charge.  Occasionally, the debtor may fall behind in his repayment of the debt.  At this time, the creditor may employ a third party to recover the debt, often referred to as debt collectors or collection agencies.

While debt collectors are allowed to contact you for legitimate purposes, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has laid down debt collection guidance and it prohibits any abusive, harassing, unfair or deceptive practices. Unfortunately, many of the practices of the debt collectors, while not reaching the level of prohibited behaviour, may be extremely annoying and intrusive.  For example, a debtor may receive dozens of calls and letters regarding the debt. There are, however, some options for debtors in this situation.

The Debt Collection Guidance includes specific provisions that, when employed, restrict the frequency and type of communication a debt collector can make with a debtor.

This letter is designed to help the debtor take advantage of his rights under the Debt Collection Guidance and restrict the manner and frequency of contact by collection agencies.  In addition, for your reference we have included excerpts from the Debt Collection Guidance regarding your rights as a debtor.  







DISCLAIMER:

FindLegalForms, Inc. (“FLF”) is not a law firm and does not provide legal advice.  The use of these materials is not a substitute for legal advice. Only a solicitor can provide legal advice.  A solicitor should be consulted for all serious legal matters.  No Solicitor-Client relationship is created by use of these materials.  

THESE MATERIALS ARE PROVIDED “AS-IS.  FLF DOES NOT GIVE ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, SUITABILITY OR COMPLETENESS FOR ANY OF THE MATERIALS FOR YOUR PARTICULAR NEEDS.  THE MATERIALS ARE USED AT YOUR OWN RISK.  IN NO EVENT WILL:  I) FLF, ITS AGENTS, PARTNERS, OR AFFILIATES; OR II) THE PROVIDERS, AUTHORS OR PUBLISHERS OF ITS MATERIALS, BE RESPONSIBLE OR LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF USE, DATE OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER USED AND ON ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THESE MATERIALS. 



Excerpts From the Debt Collection Guidance

1. UNFAIR BUSINESS PRACTICES
Communication
1.1 It is unfair to communicate, in whatever form, with consumers in an unclear, inaccurate or misleading manner.
1.2 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. use of official looking documents intended or likely to mislead debtors as to their status, for example, documents made to resemble court claims.
b. leaving out or presenting information in such a way that it creates a false or misleading impression or exploits debtors' lack of knowledge
c. those contacting debtors not making clear who they are, who they work for, what their role is, what the purpose of the contact is
d. unnecessary and unhelpful use of legal and technical language, for example, use of Latin phrases
e. failing to provide debtors or creditors with information on status of debts, for example, not providing requested balance statements when reasonably requested
f. contacting debtors at unreasonable times
g. ignoring or disregarding debtors' legitimate wishes in respect of when and where to contact them, for example, shift workers who ask not to be telephoned during certain times of the day
h. asking or instructing debtors to make contact on premium rate telephone numbers

False representation of authority and/or legal position
1.3 Those contacting debtors must not be deceitful by misrepresenting their authority and/or the correct legal position.
1.4 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. falsely implying or claiming authority, for example, claiming to work on instructions from the courts, claiming to be bailiffs or, in Scotland, sheriff officers or messenger-at-arms
b. falsely implying or stating that action can or will be taken when it legally cannot, for example, referring to bankruptcy or sequestration proceedings when the balance is too low to qualify for such proceedings or claiming a right of entry when no court order to this effect has been granted
c. misrepresenting status or backing, such as
 using a logo which falsely implies government backing
 using a business name which implies public body status, or
 falsely claiming trade body membership
d. falsely implying or stating that action has been taken when it has not, for example, that civil action has been taken or that a court judgment has already been obtained
e. falsely implying or stating that failure to pay a debt is a criminal offence or that criminal proceedings will be brought
f. pursuing third parties for payment when they are not liable
g. taking or threatening to take court action in the wrong jurisdiction, for example, taking action against a Scottish debtor in an English court unless legally justified.

Physical/psychological harassment
1.5 Putting pressure on debtors or third parties is considered to be oppressive.
1.6 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. contacting debtors at unreasonable times and at unreasonable intervals
b. pressurising debtors to sell property, to raise funds by further borrowing or to extend their borrowing
c. using more than one debt collection business at the same time resulting in repetitive and/or frequent contact by different parties
d. not ensuring that an adequate history of the debt is passed on as appropriate resulting in repetitive and/or frequent contact by different parties
e. not informing the debtor when their case has been passed on to a different debt collector
f. pressurising debtors to pay in full, in unreasonably large instalments, or to increase payments when they are unable to do so
g. making threatening statements or gestures or taking actions which suggest harm to debtors
h. ignoring and/or disregarding claims that debts have been settled or are disputed and continuing to make unjustified demands for payment
i. disclosing or threatening to disclose debt details to third parties unless legally entitled to do so
j. acting in a way likely to be publicly embarrassing to the debtor either deliberately or through lack of care, for example, by not putting correspondence in a sealed envelope and putting it through a letterbox, thereby running the risk that it could be read by third parties.

Deceptive and/or unfair methods
1.7 Dealings with debtors are not to be deceitful and/or unfair.
1.8 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. sending demands for payment to an individual when it is uncertain that they are the debtor in question, for example, threatening debt recovery action to 'the occupier' or sending a payment demand to all people sharing the same name/date of birth as a debtor in the hope that contact with the correct debtor will be made.
b. disclosing debt details to an individual when it is uncertain that they are the debtor in question, for example, disclosing details to 'the occupier' of an address.
c. refusing to deal with appointed or authorised third parties, such as Citizens Advice Bureaux, independent advice centres or money advisers
d. contacting debtors directly and bypassing their appointed representatives
e. operating a policy, without reason, of refusing to negotiate with debt management companies
f. passing on debtor details to debt management companies without the debtors' informed prior consent
g. failing to refer on to the creditor reasonable offers to pay by instalments
h. not passing on payments received within a reasonable time resulting in delays that adversely affect a debtor's financial position.
i. failing to investigate and/or provide details as appropriate, when a debt is queried or disputed, possibly resulting in debtors being wrongly pursued
j. requiring an individual to supply information to prove they are not the debtor in question, for example, driving licences, passports, full name, date of birth, signatures
k. not ceasing collection activity whilst investigating a reasonably queried or disputed debt.


Charging for debt collection
1.9 Charges should not be levied unfairly.
1.10 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. claiming collection costs from a debtor in the absence of express contractual or other legal provision
b. misleading debtors into believing they are legally liable to pay collection charges when this is not the case, for example, when there is no contractual provision
c. not giving an indication in credit agreements of the amount of any charges payable on default
d. applying unreasonable charges, for example, charges not based on actual and necessary costs
e. applying charges which are disproportionate to the main debt.

Debt collection visits
1.11 Those visiting debtors must not act in an unclear or threatening manner.
1.12 Examples of unfair practices are:
a. not making the purpose of any proposed visit clear, for example, merely stating that collectors or field agents will call is not sufficient
b. visiting a debtor when it is known they are vulnerable, for example, when a doctor's certificate has been provided stating that the debtor is ill
c. continuing with a visit when it becomes apparent that the debtor is distressed or otherwise vulnerable, for example, it becomes apparent that the debtor has mental health problems
d. entering a property uninvited
e. not leaving a property when asked to
f. visiting or threatening to visit debtors without prior agreement when the debt is deadlocked or disputed
g. not giving adequate notice of the time and date of a visit
h visiting debtors, unless requested, at inappropriate locations such as work or hospital.

Debt Collection visits
Paragraphs 1.12f and 1.12 g of the Debt collection guidance
1.12f: Visiting or threatening to visit debtors without prior agreement when the debt is deadlocked or disputed.
By 'deadlocked' we mean where a debtor (or debtors adviser) agrees there is a debt and has offered a repayment programme which has not been agreed by the creditor or debt collector. We are not saying that any offer must be accepted but we have seen cases where offers are disregarded and a debtor is told that 'we are sending field agents'. Many debtors are unlikely to understand this term and are likely to view the visit as a threat designed to make them offer more money when they can pay no more. Some letters appear to be designed to give this impression. By 'disputed' we mean genuinely disputed. We are not seeking to protect 'wont pays' but those who are being pursued for a debt they do not owe or genuinely believe they do not owe. Debt collectors who can show that the debt is due and that any dispute has been looked into and the debt confirmed will not be in breach of this provision.
1.12g: Not giving adequate notice of the time and date of a visit
When a door-to-door debt collector makes an initial home visit to a debtor it may not always be possible for them to give adequate notice of the time and date of that visit. This is not necessarily unfair. The key word is adequate. This was inserted to ensure that what the debtor regarded as adequate was key.
What is adequate will vary from debtor to debtor. When initial contact is made a debtor may be happy to speak to the debt collector there and then. If that is the case the visit would not be unfair. Where a debtor prefers to use that first visit to agree to a future visit at a more convenient time a debt collector should respect their wishes. A debtor may prefer to do so at a later date so they can seek advice about their situation or arrange for a third party to be there. What is important is that a debtor is given enough time to prepare. They should never be coerced into immediate discussions.
To read the entire Debt Collection Guidance, please visit http://www.oft.gov.uk/shared_oft/business_leaflets/consumer_credit/oft664.pdf
 



Your Name
Your Address
               
Date

Collection Agency
Collection Agency Address

Re: Your Name and Debt in Question

Dear Sir or Madam:

In accordance with the Debt Collection Guidance issued by the Office of Fair Trading (the “Guidance”), I hereby demand that you immediately cease all further communication with me regarding [insert the debt reference # or other information, this can typically found in letters from the debt collector].  

Under the Guidance, you may contact me for the following reasons only:
(1) to advise me that your agencys further efforts are being terminated; or
(2) to notify me that your agency or the creditor may invoke a specified remedy
Any communications other than those specifically set out above will be considered a violation of the Debt collection Guidance and will be handled accordingly.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

Respectfully Yours,



[Your Name]


Number of Pages9
DimensionsDesigned for Letter Size (8.5" x 11")
EditableYes (.doc, .wpd and .rtf)
UsageUnlimited number of prints
Product number#34001
This is the content of the form and is provided for your convenience. It is not necessarily what the actual form looks like and does not include the information, instructions and other materials that come with the form you would purchase. An actual sample can also be viewed by clicking on the "Sample Form" near the top left of this page.












Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency
(England and Wales)











This Packet Includes:
1. General Information
2. Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency






General Information
Letter from Debtor to Collection Agency

Overview

A debtor is a person that has an obligation to pay a debt to a creditor.  This debt may be for such things as a car, a personal loan, medical bills, rent or a credit card charge.  Occasionally, the debtor may fall behind in his repayment of the debt.  At this time, the creditor may employ a third party to recover the debt, often referred to as debt collectors or collection agencies.

While debt collectors are allowed to contact you for legitimate purposes, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has laid down debt collection guidance and it prohibits any abusive, harassing, unfair or deceptive practices. Unfortunately, many of the practices of the debt collectors, while not reaching the level of prohibited behaviour, may be extremely annoying and intrusive.  For example, a debtor may receive dozens of calls and letters regarding the debt. There are, however, some options for debtors in this situation.

The Debt Collection Guidance includes specific provisions that, when employed, restrict the frequency and type of communication a debt collector can make with a debtor.

This letter is designed to help the debtor take advantage of his rights under the Debt Collection Guidance and restrict the manner and frequency of contact by collection agencies.  In addition, for your reference we have included excerpts from the Debt Collection Guidance regarding your rights as a debtor.  







DISCLAIMER:

FindLegalForms, Inc. (“FLF”) is not a law firm and does not provide legal advice.  The use of these materials is not a substitute for legal advice. Only a solicitor can provide legal advice.  A solicitor should be consulted for all serious legal matters.  No Solicitor-Client relationship is created by use of these materials.  

THESE MATERIALS ARE PROVIDED “AS-IS.  FLF DOES NOT GIVE ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, SUITABILITY OR COMPLETENESS FOR ANY OF THE MATERIALS FOR YOUR PARTICULAR NEEDS.  THE MATERIALS ARE USED AT YOUR OWN RISK.  IN NO EVENT WILL:  I) FLF, ITS AGENTS, PARTNERS, OR AFFILIATES; OR II) THE PROVIDERS, AUTHORS OR PUBLISHERS OF ITS MATERIALS, BE RESPONSIBLE OR LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF USE, DATE OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER USED AND ON ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THESE MATERIALS. 



Excerpts From the Debt Collection Guidance

1. UNFAIR BUSINESS PRACTICES
Communication
1.1 It is unfair to communicate, in whatever form, with consumers in an unclear, inaccurate or misleading manner.
1.2 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. use of official looking documents intended or likely to mislead debtors as to their status, for example, documents made to resemble court claims.
b. leaving out or presenting information in such a way that it creates a false or misleading impression or exploits debtors' lack of knowledge
c. those contacting debtors not making clear who they are, who they work for, what their role is, what the purpose of the contact is
d. unnecessary and unhelpful use of legal and technical language, for example, use of Latin phrases
e. failing to provide debtors or creditors with information on status of debts, for example, not providing requested balance statements when reasonably requested
f. contacting debtors at unreasonable times
g. ignoring or disregarding debtors' legitimate wishes in respect of when and where to contact them, for example, shift workers who ask not to be telephoned during certain times of the day
h. asking or instructing debtors to make contact on premium rate telephone numbers

False representation of authority and/or legal position
1.3 Those contacting debtors must not be deceitful by misrepresenting their authority and/or the correct legal position.
1.4 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. falsely implying or claiming authority, for example, claiming to work on instructions from the courts, claiming to be bailiffs or, in Scotland, sheriff officers or messenger-at-arms
b. falsely implying or stating that action can or will be taken when it legally cannot, for example, referring to bankruptcy or sequestration proceedings when the balance is too low to qualify for such proceedings or claiming a right of entry when no court order to this effect has been granted
c. misrepresenting status or backing, such as
 using a logo which falsely implies government backing
 using a business name which implies public body status, or
 falsely claiming trade body membership
d. falsely implying or stating that action has been taken when it has not, for example, that civil action has been taken or that a court judgment has already been obtained
e. falsely implying or stating that failure to pay a debt is a criminal offence or that criminal proceedings will be brought
f. pursuing third parties for payment when they are not liable
g. taking or threatening to take court action in the wrong jurisdiction, for example, taking action against a Scottish debtor in an English court unless legally justified.

Physical/psychological harassment
1.5 Putting pressure on debtors or third parties is considered to be oppressive.
1.6 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. contacting debtors at unreasonable times and at unreasonable intervals
b. pressurising debtors to sell property, to raise funds by further borrowing or to extend their borrowing
c. using more than one debt collection business at the same time resulting in repetitive and/or frequent contact by different parties
d. not ensuring that an adequate history of the debt is passed on as appropriate resulting in repetitive and/or frequent contact by different parties
e. not informing the debtor when their case has been passed on to a different debt collector
f. pressurising debtors to pay in full, in unreasonably large instalments, or to increase payments when they are unable to do so
g. making threatening statements or gestures or taking actions which suggest harm to debtors
h. ignoring and/or disregarding claims that debts have been settled or are disputed and continuing to make unjustified demands for payment
i. disclosing or threatening to disclose debt details to third parties unless legally entitled to do so
j. acting in a way likely to be publicly embarrassing to the debtor either deliberately or through lack of care, for example, by not putting correspondence in a sealed envelope and putting it through a letterbox, thereby running the risk that it could be read by third parties.

Deceptive and/or unfair methods
1.7 Dealings with debtors are not to be deceitful and/or unfair.
1.8 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. sending demands for payment to an individual when it is uncertain that they are the debtor in question, for example, threatening debt recovery action to 'the occupier' or sending a payment demand to all people sharing the same name/date of birth as a debtor in the hope that contact with the correct debtor will be made.
b. disclosing debt details to an individual when it is uncertain that they are the debtor in question, for example, disclosing details to 'the occupier' of an address.
c. refusing to deal with appointed or authorised third parties, such as Citizens Advice Bureaux, independent advice centres or money advisers
d. contacting debtors directly and bypassing their appointed representatives
e. operating a policy, without reason, of refusing to negotiate with debt management companies
f. passing on debtor details to debt management companies without the debtors' informed prior consent
g. failing to refer on to the creditor reasonable offers to pay by instalments
h. not passing on payments received within a reasonable time resulting in delays that adversely affect a debtor's financial position.
i. failing to investigate and/or provide details as appropriate, when a debt is queried or disputed, possibly resulting in debtors being wrongly pursued
j. requiring an individual to supply information to prove they are not the debtor in question, for example, driving licences, passports, full name, date of birth, signatures
k. not ceasing collection activity whilst investigating a reasonably queried or disputed debt.


Charging for debt collection
1.9 Charges should not be levied unfairly.
1.10 Examples of unfair practices are as follows:
a. claiming collection costs from a debtor in the absence of express contractual or other legal provision
b. misleading debtors into believing they are legally liable to pay collection charges when this is not the case, for example, when there is no contractual provision
c. not giving an indication in credit agreements of the amount of any charges payable on default
d. applying unreasonable charges, for example, charges not based on actual and necessary costs
e. applying charges which are disproportionate to the main debt.

Debt collection visits
1.11 Those visiting debtors must not act in an unclear or threatening manner.
1.12 Examples of unfair practices are:
a. not making the purpose of any proposed visit clear, for example, merely stating that collectors or field agents will call is not sufficient
b. visiting a debtor when it is known they are vulnerable, for example, when a doctor's certificate has been provided stating that the debtor is ill
c. continuing with a visit when it becomes apparent that the debtor is distressed or otherwise vulnerable, for example, it becomes apparent that the debtor has mental health problems
d. entering a property uninvited
e. not leaving a property when asked to
f. visiting or threatening to visit debtors without prior agreement when the debt is deadlocked or disputed
g. not giving adequate notice of the time and date of a visit
h visiting debtors, unless requested, at inappropriate locations such as work or hospital.

Debt Collection visits
Paragraphs 1.12f and 1.12 g of the Debt collection guidance
1.12f: Visiting or threatening to visit debtors without prior agreement when the debt is deadlocked or disputed.
By 'deadlocked' we mean where a debtor (or debtors adviser) agrees there is a debt and has offered a repayment programme which has not been agreed by the creditor or debt collector. We are not saying that any offer must be accepted but we have seen cases where offers are disregarded and a debtor is told that 'we are sending field agents'. Many debtors are unlikely to understand this term and are likely to view the visit as a threat designed to make them offer more money when they can pay no more. Some letters appear to be designed to give this impression. By 'disputed' we mean genuinely disputed. We are not seeking to protect 'wont pays' but those who are being pursued for a debt they do not owe or genuinely believe they do not owe. Debt collectors who can show that the debt is due and that any dispute has been looked into and the debt confirmed will not be in breach of this provision.
1.12g: Not giving adequate notice of the time and date of a visit
When a door-to-door debt collector makes an initial home visit to a debtor it may not always be possible for them to give adequate notice of the time and date of that visit. This is not necessarily unfair. The key word is adequate. This was inserted to ensure that what the debtor regarded as adequate was key.
What is adequate will vary from debtor to debtor. When initial contact is made a debtor may be happy to speak to the debt collector there and then. If that is the case the visit would not be unfair. Where a debtor prefers to use that first visit to agree to a future visit at a more convenient time a debt collector should respect their wishes. A debtor may prefer to do so at a later date so they can seek advice about their situation or arrange for a third party to be there. What is important is that a debtor is given enough time to prepare. They should never be coerced into immediate discussions.
To read the entire Debt Collection Guidance, please visit http://www.oft.gov.uk/shared_oft/business_leaflets/consumer_credit/oft664.pdf
 



Your Name
Your Address
               
Date

Collection Agency
Collection Agency Address

Re: Your Name and Debt in Question

Dear Sir or Madam:

In accordance with the Debt Collection Guidance issued by the Office of Fair Trading (the “Guidance”), I hereby demand that you immediately cease all further communication with me regarding [insert the debt reference # or other information, this can typically found in letters from the debt collector].  

Under the Guidance, you may contact me for the following reasons only:
(1) to advise me that your agencys further efforts are being terminated; or
(2) to notify me that your agency or the creditor may invoke a specified remedy
Any communications other than those specifically set out above will be considered a violation of the Debt collection Guidance and will be handled accordingly.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

Respectfully Yours,



[Your Name]


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