What to expect when hiring a collection attorney? All a business owner or private lender needs to do to engage my firm and start collection action for overdue accounts is to provide the following documents and information:
- The document(s) from which the debt originated (i.e. signed contract, invoices, promissory note, etc.);
- All relevant contact information known (i.e. phone numbers, addresses, email addresses, etc.);
- Any known employment and/or banking information;
- A detailed and accurate Statement of Account showing the amounts due for goods, and/or services which led to the outstanding figure.
Next time: What are the steps in the collection process?
THE COLLECTION PROCESS:
- Initially, I send a formal demand letter that conforms to the guidelines of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. What this does is let the debtor know an attorney has been retained to take whatever legal action may be necessary to collect the debt, and from this point forward all communication will be with my firm and not with the client. Frequently, once a debtor knows I am involved, they call or email to make payment arrangements to stay out of court.
- If the demand letter does not elicit communication or payment from the debtor I will file a law suit in the court that has jurisdiction over this claim.
- Upon receiving proper service of the law suit I either take a judgment or, if the debt is contested, set a trial date.
- Once a judgment is obtained, the debtor either enters into a payment arrangement with my firm or I proceed with post-judgment collection proceedings.
Next time: What are the post-judgment proceedings?