Debt collectors possess vast resources when trying to get in touch with consumers who are delinquent in their debts. Even with a significant increase in debtors throughout the pandemic, various paths exist to make contact in an effort to find resolutions to past-due or outright delinquent balances.
When the third quarter of 2021 ended, 77.6 million consumers had at least one outstanding debt – many being for medical expenses – totaling $188 billion, according to TransUnion.
More options for collectors
Federal regulators implemented new rules to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act that will add a few more. Thanks to the previous presidential administration known to be more “business-friendly,” debtors who open their email, check for texts, and visit social media sites may find themselves contacted by collection agencies.
New and more modern strategies may see collectors connect with someone on a social media account like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or others. From there, direct messages may find their way to the people they have been pursuing. Considering that the preferred method of communication has changed significantly, debt collection agencies will have to adapt.
Limitations exist to protect consumers from violations of their privacy and harassment, abuse, and unfair practices. A collector reaching out via social media must send private messages. They are not allowed to post on a consumer’s wall that would be seen by friends, family, and other followers.
Also, “friend requests” must include that the company is attempting to collect a debt and also provide an option to opt-out of any future communications on the platform.
With more options to secure the money that agency clients are entitled to, the better the bottom line for the debt collection companies. Consumers must be held accountable for delinquent balances, provided that the accountability follows what may be the ever-changing rules of debt collections.