Debt collectors must adhere to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) which ensures fair treatment and approved debt collection practices. Under this act, the debt collector must stop calling or writing if you send the company a letter requesting an end to these practices. With the exception of contacting you to warn you about any legal action taken against you, debt collectors must stop contacting you upon receipt of this letter. Writing the letter is straightforward and only takes a few minutes.
Speak to the debt collection agency at least once before resorting to writing the letter to see if you can resolve the issue over the telephone. Write the letter asking the creditor to stop contacting you if an agreement is impossible to reach over the telephone first.
Include your name and address at the top of the letter followed by the debt collection company name and address. Begin the letter with a specific salutation such as "Dear Mr./Ms. (debt collector's name)" or a general salutation, such as "To Whom It May Concern."
State the purpose of the letter in clear, concise language: "I am writing to you in response to your persistent telephone calls and letters," for example, in the first paragraph.
State the action you want taken in the second paragraph, for instance: "I demand you cease all contact with me at all locations including my home and workplace."
State any contact exceptions you might have in the next paragraph, such as to inform you about specific legal action or remedy efforts.
In the final paragraph, inform the debt collector that you plan to record all future contact in detail, and that you will pursue available legal action if any contact violates the FDCPA. End the letter with your signature above your printed name.
Make a photocopy of your signed letter and keep the copy for your own records. Send the original copy of the letter via certified mail and request a "return receipt," so you'll receive notice when the debt collector gets the letter.
Read through the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and become familiar with your rights; if any are or already have been violated, take available legal action. If contact resumes, follow through on the statements made in your letter by recording the time of the contact and general gist of what transpired; seek legal action if necessary. Remember, the debt collection agency is still allowed to contact you to inform you of any action taken against you, and may send you one letter reminding you that your letter does not nullify the debt.
This letter will stop debt collectors from contacting you, but will not eliminate your debt; legal action may be taken against you if it remains unpaid.