It’s not easy to run a business. The market is growing more competitive and your overheads are increasing. What’s more, your customers are deeper in debt. Today, Americans owe a record $1.04 trillion in credit card debt alone. This is at least $800 billion more than five years ago. To make matters worse, more Americans are defaulting on their payments.
As a business,you’re always looking for ways to improve your accounts receivable and you want to recover what you’re owed from your debtors in a timely fashion. You certainly could use the revenue. But your invoices, emails, phone calls, and letters have been ineffective. Yet, you hesitate to use the services of a professional.You’ve heard some negative stories about debt collectors and you can’t afford to damage your business relationships or your reputation.
Certainly, some debt collectors can resort to dirty and illegal tactics to recover payments. But it’s a misconception that most debt collection agencies are unethical. In fact, the majority play by the rules because they value their reputation.
Consumers with debt are protected by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. This allows them to sue shady debt collectors to the level of $1000 if they have been harassed, threatened, or harmed. What’s more, the Federal Trade Commission has acted against many debt collectors for breaking the law. Such agencies have been banned and have collectively lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in court.
Because it’s in a debt collection agency’s best interests to operate within the confines of the law, many are affiliated with organizations that promote good values in the debt collection industry. Some of these organizations are as follows:
Founded in 1939, ACA International represents over 230,000 members of the debt collection industry, including debt collection agencies, lawyers, creditors, debt buyers and others. This premier trade association encourages debt collectors to show leadership, integrity, responsibility, and respect. They encourage debt collectors to treat delinquent accounts with respect and to help customers pay off their debts in a manner that’s professional and ethical.
International Association of Commercial Collectors
This membership group for debt collectors encourages values such as ethics, education, mutual support, and respect. It tries to boost the growth of its members by creating awareness through education programs and by promoting the benefits of using the services of a certified IACC member. An IACC certified debt collection agency will strive to conduct itself ethically.
Better Business Bureau
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) has sought to promote marketplace trust since 1912, with over 100 independently incorporated organizations across North America. They try to empower customers and help good businesses stand out through their rating system.
Any debt collection agency that boasts an A+ rating must maintain at least 97 points. To do so, they must keep complaints to a minimum and act fast to resolve problems.
If you’re a business looking to partner with an ethical debt collection agency that gets results, then check their affiliations. Experienced and reputable debt collectors that have an A+ rating from the BBB and are affiliated with ACA International and the International Association of Commercial Collectors are likely to preserve your reputationand recover your revenue.