Most debtors feel a huge sense of relief when they file a bankruptcy case and the debt collection efforts against them stop. Once a discharge order is obtained and you have a fresh start, your financial stress is lifted. However, what should you do if a debt collector contacts you after your discharge?
This rarely happens, but it is possible for it to occur. In most cases, it is a misunderstanding. Below are a few tips on what you should do:
•Make sure you received a discharge order. If you do not know if you received a discharge, contact the court clerk or your attorney. It is important to keep a copy of your discharge order in your records.
•Review your pleadings to verify that the creditor was listed in your bankruptcy filing and received notice of your filing. If the debtor is not listed, the debt may not be dischargeable because the creditor was never given notice of your filing. Be sure to check with your bankruptcy attorney.
•Confirm that the debt is dischargeable. There are a few types of debt that are not eligible for discharge. However, the majority of debts such as credit cards and medical bills are dischargeable.
•Once you have verified that the creditor was listed in your bankruptcy filing, the debt is dischargeable, and you received your discharge order, you should call the creditor and inform them of this information. You should provide the creditor a copy of your discharge order along with a letter confirming that you provided the creditor this information and who you spoke to on the telephone. Keep a copy of this letter for your records.
Following the above steps will generally resolve the issue. However, if a collector continues to harass you, it is time to all Michael A. Koplen. A collector that knowingly or intentionally violates the discharge order can be held liable in court.
If you are interested in learning how filing a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy could benefit you, contact The Koplen Law Firm. Bankruptcy is designed to give people who are in financial difficulty a “fresh start.” Thus, if your debts are causing you undue stress, you should call us for a consultation to discuss whether bankruptcy is the right option for you. Our offices are located in New City and New York City, New York.