Debt Collection Demand Letters
Pre-litigation demand letters may be an effective way for creditors to save on paying contingent collection fees. The Gebeloff Law Group is about to launch a new division, AttorneyDemandLetters.com. The program will give creditors two options to choose from:
1) A Demand letter would be sent to the debtor urging the debtor to make payment arrangements directly to the creditor. The Demand Letter program is for a flat fee. Gebeloff is looking to save creditors from paying high contingent collection fees to commercial collection agencies when a Demand Letter from a commercial collection attorney may be all that is needed to convince the debtor to pay the creditor.
Collection Demand Letter
2) The second option adds a phone call from our commercial collection law firm. The call would be placed by a commercial collection attorney directly to the debtor. The debt collection letter coupled with a debt collection phone call from a collection lawyer will give the debtor a sense of urgency that they should consider paying the creditor before the possibility of incurring additional legal fees and costs defending a debt collection law suit. The Gebeloff Law Group again would simply charge a flat fee for this debt collection service. If the pre-litigation collection service is not successful, the creditor would then be given the option to pursue the past due collection account in the more traditional manner once the claim is placed in The Gebeloff Law Group’s debt collection litigation cue.
The Gebeloff Law Group has teamed up with ScaleUp Consulting, a Miami based agency to help promote the Attorney Demand Letter program and set up technology so clients as well as potential clients can login and place their accounts for debt collection. The Scale Up Consulting team has been very easy to work with and help our commercial debt collection law firm take their vision and make the vision a reality.
Call the collection attorneys at the Gebeloff Law Group to discuss all your company’s debt collection needs. We are always happy to devise a debt collection strategy that is customized for all our client’s debt recovery needs.
Senior Debt Collector Joins The Gebeloff Law Group
A Commercial Collection Law Firm
The Gebeloff Law Group has added a Senior Debt Collector to its staff. The addition of the debt collector will assist Mr. Gebeloff in securing prelitigation payments from debtors. The philosophy of The Gebeloff Law Group is to provide its clients commercial debt collection services in an effective and cost efficient manner. If voluntary payment is not obtained prior to litigation, the debt collector will help gather valuable information about the debtor, including, but not limited to, the nature of the dispute, assets the debtor may or may not have and/ or if the debtor’s officers may have set up other entities in an effort to defraud creditors.
Collection Attorney Stephen B. Gebeloff
We have discussed in prior blogs the difference between our commercial debt collection law firm and commercial collection agencies. Collection agencies also use debt collectors but, too many times debt collectors are limited in their effectiveness as they are constrained. Collection agencies are not licensed to practice law. A commercial collection agency must eventually send your debt collection case to a collection attorney if the collection agency is unable to collect on your company’s past due account receivable. The collection agency then will charge the creditor a higher contingent collection rate.
Our debt collector will also work on post judgment collections. Too many times after a judgment is obtained, not enough pressure is brought upon a debtor to make payments to satisfy the judgment. Commercial collection agencies cannot bring proceedings supplementary to implead third parties and/or pursue third parties for fraudulent transfers. We are optimistic that the addition of our Senior Debt Collector to our staff will increase the percentage of the recovery of bad debt our clients send to our commercial collection law firm.
Please feel free to call our debt collection law firm and ask to speak to one our experienced debt collection staff. We would be happy to discuss the differences between using a collection agency, collection agencies and/or using a collection attorney with a commercial collection law firm to collect your pre-judgment or post judgment debt.
Collection Agencies Refer Their Debt Collection Files from Their Collection Agency to Our Debt Collection Law Firm
We have been discussing the differences between a debt collection law firm and commercial collection agency in several past articles on our debt collection blog. The first thing that our collection law firm emphasizes to our clients who seek our counsel in how to collect on past due collection accounts is that collection agencies are not licensed to practice law.
Collection agencies are limited in the means and methods available to the collection agency in attempting to recover past due accounts.
A typical collection agency will send out a series of collection letters and then make repeated phone calls. In these tough economic times, that usually is not enough. Most businesses today have very tight cash flow and phone calls and letters from a collection agency may not give the debtor enough incentive to make payments to your company first.
Florida Collection Attorney Gebeloff
When you engage a debt collection law firm instead of utilizing commercial collection agencies, you know put the power of the imminent threat of legal action behind your demand for payment on the past due account. It is true that the cash flow of a business presented to a collection agency when they are attempting to collect a debt will be the same as presented to the debt collection law firm but, once a debtor is served with a summons and complaint from a collection attorney, the timetables for payment change.
In our next blog post we will discuss what some of the scenarios your company may expect from a debtor after being served with a debt collection lawsuit. A debt collection lawyer backed by a commercial debt collection law firm can provide several different debt collection strategies for your company to consider. We will make clear why using a commercial debt collection law firm over a commercial collection agency may be the better alternative for your company when implementing a debt collection strategy.
Florida Collection Agencies Have Limitations
In previous articles, we have been discussing why collection agencies may not be the best alternative when your company is trying to collect an account receivable. A collection agency is not licensed to practice law and cannot give your company legal advice about debt collection in Florida. Many Florida collection agencies retain our Florida debt collection law firm once traditional collection practices employed by a Florida collection agency have been exhausted.
A Florida Collection Agency Cannot Practice Law
There are basic steps every Collection Attorney should undertake when representing a judgment creditor in order to assess the likelihood of recovering from a judgment debtor. In addition, a Florida Attorney undertaking to collect on a Judgment should be versed in the various rights and remedies that are available to Judgment creditors afforded by Florida Law, that when used correctly, may lead to recovery of money towards satisfaction of the Judgment.
Below are steps that a collection attorney should perform when analyzing a collection matter and making an assessment as to the viability of collection:
- Speak to the creditor client to determine if the client has any knowledge if the Judgment debtors may be associated with any business entities and officers, directors, partners, members. This information is useful as Florida law permits a charging lien to be issued and served on an entity against a Judgment debtor’s interest in an entity.
- Perform their own search of the Florida Department of State Division of Corporations to see if the Judgment debtor is listed as an officer or managing member or partner in any business.
- Use public record search programs made available to collection attorneys such as Accurint or Lexisnexis to get a broad profile on the debtor including, but not limited to, addresses the debtor has lived at, corporations the debtor was and/or is an officer, properties that are and/or were owned by the debtor, automobiles that were and/or are owned by the debtor.
- Try and ascertain a place of employment
- Ask the client about their knowledge of what assets the debtor may own that may satisfy the judgment, including, but not limited to household furnishings, automobiles, jewelry and/or other personal property of value
- Ask the client if they have copies of any checks from the debtor or know where the debtor does bank to possibly attempt garnishment.
- Ascertain if a Judgment Lien was recorded with the Division of Corporations. If not advise the Client of the effect of filing a Judgment Lien and discuss whether it would be prudent to file a Judgment Lien even if it is decided by the client they do not want to spend any more time or money pursuing collection of the Judgment.
Florida Debt Collection Agency
Florida Collection Agencies Hire Our Collection Law Firm
Once an analysis of the information is obtained from the non-inclusive list above, a discussion with the client should be undertaken explaining possible costs involved, strategies that can be put in place to attempt collection and a reasonable timeline provided as to how post judgment collection proceedings may play out depending on how a debtor may or may not respond to post judgment collection efforts.
Once it is decided that the client wishes to proceed with collection efforts below are several, non-inclusive steps, that an attorney may utilize to attempt collection
- Writ of Execution
- Writ of Garnishment
- Pursuant to Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.560 obtain Post Judgment Discovery in Aid of Execution, including, a Fact Information Sheet directed to the debtor ( Pursuant to Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.977), and/or any other form of discovery including request for documents, interrogatories and/or depositions of the debtor or third parties.
- Commence proceedings supplementary pursuant to Florida Statutes Section 56.29
Feel free to contact our Florida debt collection law firm. We will discuss how we differ from Florida collection agencies. A Florida collection agency can only provide limited debt collection services in Florida.
Florida Collection Agency Directory
Florida Collection Agencies
Our collection law firm was recently contacted by a Florida collection agency to assist in attempting collection of a commercial collection case. We have been writing many articles setting forth the difference between Florida commercial collection agencies and Florida collection law firms. A Florida collection agency cannot practice law. The collection case forwarded to our collection lawyer involved fraudulent transfer of funds. A Florida commercial collection agency may have some debt collectors familiar with the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act but, cannot legally file a lawsuit. Florida collection agencies must send their cases that need to be litigated to a Florida collection attorney.
Florida Collection Attorney Gebeloff
We accept many cases from Florida commercial collection agencies simply because traditional collection methods have not procured payment. Many commercial credit managers are realizing that it makes sense to consider simply forwarding their past due account receivables to a debt collection law firm rather than a Florida commercial collection agency. Notwithstanding not having to pay a higher contingent collection rate to Florida commercial collection agencies, the credit managers realize the limitations of a Florida collection agency.
If you call our Florida debt collection law firm one of our collection lawyers will discuss your debt collection matter with you. There are some instances in which forwarding your case to a Florida commercial collection may make sense. When you have a high volume of small balance claims for collection a Florida debt collection agency may be a good alternative.
If litigation is required a Florida collection agency will not be able to litigate the case. The case would have to be sent to a Florida debt collection lawyer. We support Florida commercial collection agencies but, savvy commercial credit managers already know that it more cost effective to send the case directly to a Florida debt collection law firm. It should also be considered that if litigation is required, if you forward a case to Florida collection agencies first, there will be a delay in that once the Florida collection agency determines it cannot collect it must then send the debt collection case to a Florida collection attorney.
Using a Florida Collection Agency or Florida Collection Agencies
Florida collection agencies continue to collect debt in Florida. A collection agency in Florida needs to register with the State of Florida to have a collection agency license. A Florida collection agency may be a good fit for company that has a high volume of low balance claims for collection that are too small to justify filing a debt collection law suit. Florida collection agencies typically send our collection letters and then use debt collectors to make debt collection phone calls from their Florida collection agency office.
Even though a Florida collection agency may hold a license to collect debt in Florida, there really is no oversight over the Florida collection agencies over what tactics they may employ or how effective they may be at collecting debt in Florida. More credit managers are recognizing that they no longer need to place their debt collection claims with Florida collection agencies. A Florida debt collection law firm offers the same services as a Florida collection agency. However, what is important to recognize is that Florida collection agencies do not hold a license to practice law.
Florida Debt Collection Agency
If a Florida collection agency want to suggest that a collection case needs to go to an attorney, the Florida collection agencies have to outsource the collection matter to a Florida collection attorney. The end result is the Florida collection agency has to charge you a higher contingent fee as the Florida collection agencies now have to act as a middle man and will charge a premium on top of what the Florida collection law firm charges.
Our Florida collection lawyers will be happy to discuss the difference between Florida collection agencies and Florida collection law firms. In some instances utilizing a Florida collection agency may be a good option. However, in most cases using a Florida debt collection law firm will prove to get better results as the debtor recognizes that using a Florida collection law firm over a Florida collection agency means that your company intends to use the Florida courts to help your company recover its money.
COMMERCIAL COLLECTION LAW FIRM
Our Florida collection attorneys will assist your company collect past due commercial accounts
Florida collection agencies have been collecting commercial debt in Florida for many years. When your company choices to engage a Florida collection agency it has become apparent that your customer who is located in Florida has stopped paying invoices in a timely fashion. Florida collection agencies typically hire debt collectors to make collection calls from their Florida collection agency. Florida collection agencies then will send a series of collection letters to the debtor located in Florida.
Florida Collection Attorney Gebeloff
Our Florida commercial debt collection law firm has been receiving debt collection cases from Florida commercial collection agencies when the Florida collection agency has been unsuccessful in collecting on the past due date. In that instance the Florida commercial collection agencies are obliged to increase the contingent collection rate that they charge so that they may then forward the debt collection matter to our Florida commercial debt collection law firm for further handling. Florida collection agencies are not licensed to practice law.
Our Florida commercial collection law firm just like a Florida collection agency will send our collection letters and place collection calls. The huge difference is the customer is now receiving a collection letter from a Florida collection attorney. Collection phone calls are made by a Florida debt collection law firm. There is a greater sense of urgency for your customer to make payment to your company when demand for payment is coming from a Commercial Collection firm rather than a Florida collection agency. Lastly, there is no middleman. Our firm will charge a flat contingent fee on collection. Again Florida collection agencies raise your company’s contingent collection rate upon collection when they forward the claim to a debt collection lawyer.
Please contact our Florida debt collection law firm and speak to one of our debt collection professionals. We would be happy to discuss a debt collection strategy that is best suited to help your company recover money that is justly owed.
THIRD PARTY COLLECTIONS
COLLECTION AGENCY OR COLLECTION LAW FIRM
When your internal collection efforts have failed, it is time to consider turning the account over to either a collection agency or collection law firm. Your company has to consider whether they want to pursue hard or soft collections.
Soft collections is used when client relationships want to be maintained. Your customer is sent gentle demand letters and telephone calls are made to try and work with your customer to determine the root cause of the delinquency and then to try and establish creative solutions to recover your money in both an amicable and most expeditious way possible. The goal is not to alienate your customer with the hopes that once your customer’s account is brought current the business relationship can continue.
Hard collections are employed when it is apparent that your customer has no intention of or does not have the resources to pay for the services you have provided or for the goods that you have sold and delivered. The telephone calls are made and demand letters are written in a manner to make it clear to our customer that if payment arrangements are not made immediately, litigation may be started to recover your money.
Debt Collection Law Firm
A collection agency may be considered where balances on accounts are too small to consider filing a lawsuit. In this instance, the debt collection agency can continue to make collection calls and send letters. They can be a valuable resource for a company that has multiple small balance past due accounts. However, collection agencies have their limitations in that they are not attorneys and can only go so far in demanding payment. If litigation is required the collection agency has to outsource the account to a collection attorney and your company will end up paying a higher contingent fee as the collection agency typically charges a higher rate once an account is sent to an attorney.
A debt collection law firm can perform the same debt recovery services as collection agency and more. The law firm is equipped to make telephone demands and send collection letters. The collection law firm can also utilize soft collections or hard collections as necessary. Importantly, the debt collection law firm gives your customer a stronger sense of urgency to resolve the outstanding debt. Further a collection attorney is able to file a lawsuit, levy on assets and garnish bank accounts if necessary to collect your money. A lawyer can give provide you with legal advice and opinions on the best course of action to take an alternative theories in which it may be possible to impose personal liability on officers of the company for the debt even if there are no personal guarantees on the account.
Retail Collection Agencies Regulated by the FDCPA
A collection agency is employed to collect debts either on commercial debt collection or retail debt collection accounts. When collecting debts from consumers or individuals who owe money from transactions that are not related to a commercial transaction, the account is considered a retail debt collection account. The collection agency is regulated by the FDCPA (Fair Debt Collection Practices Act). The collection agency is prohibited from employing debt collection tactics that may mislead or be overly aggressive. There are many prohibitions detailed in the act and collection agencies should be very careful when attempting collection of consumer accounts. There are law firms that their entire law practice concentrates on suing collection agencies that violate the act.
Commercial Collection Agencies
Commercial collection agencies that only collect on commercial collection accounts are not bound by the FDCPA. Our debt collection law firm mainly collects on commercial collection accounts as we do not want to subject our debt recovery from to the rigors of the FDCPA. We perform the same services as a commercial collection agency and more. Just like a commercial collection agency our law firm will send out collection demand letters demanding payment for your company’s money. Our debt collection attorneys will also make telephone calls just like a commercial collection agency to attempt to collect money and to determine the nature of the dispute, if any.
Florida Collection Agency
A commercial collection agency is not a collection law firm. Collection agencies are not licensed to practice law. A collection agency cannot file a lawsuit to collect your money. The collection agency has to send your debt collection account to a collection law firm. In most cases, the collection agency will be obligated to charge a higher contingent fee rate to act as an intermediary between the collection attorney and the client. If your company knows form the outset that the account is going to be difficult to collect or require litigation, rather than placing the account with a collection agency, retaining a commercial collection law firm with experienced debt collection attorneys and paralegals.
Feel free to contact one of our debt collection lawyers or paralegals to discuss your company’s debt collection needs.