Rules of conduct when pursuing a debt
When pursuing a debt there are strict rules which apply to your behaviour.
YOU MUST NOT:
- demand money without saying who you are and how much money is owed
- demand more money than is actually owed
- continue to demand money from someone who denies they owe money without making further inquiries as to whether your demands for the money are valid
- contact people who know the debtor, for example a debtor’s employer, friends, relatives or neighbours, unless you are doing so to get the debtor’s address
- blackmail a debtor – this includes threatening, or making reference to, possible criminal proceedings if the debt is not paid
- pretend to be authorised in some official capacity to claim or enforce payment of a debt
This behaviour is likely to anger the debtor will not be as effective as being polite, and may be illegal. A letter of request is a way of formally asking for payment of the debt. It is not a necessary step in commencing legal action.
See Fair Trading Act 1974 s 43
See also ASIC's Regulatory Guide 96 Debt collection guideline: for collectors and creditors.
Rules of conduct when pursuing a debt : Last Revised: Mon Oct 22nd 2012
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