6 Misconceptions about Debt Collections

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Tell us if you’ve heard this one before: a debt collection agency will call all day and night, threatening bodily harm if the debtor doesn’t pay up. A friend of a friend of yours told you this happens all the time, so it must be true. What’s more, every agency commits the same heinous acts, right?

Wrong!

While some disreputable services perpetrate these extreme debt recovery techniques, they are a minority. Here at Summit A*R, we help the cash flow by following a strict ethical code that respects the debtor while collecting in your best interests.

Unfortunately, news of unethical tactics spread like wildfire, which is how these myths originate. And because they’re rooted in some truth, they can be hard to dispel.

Can you separate fact from fiction? It’s tricky, so we’ll help. Here’s the truth behind these six misconceptions about our industry.

1. Your A/R Department Can Do What Debt Collection Services Promise

Some people mistakenly believe their Accounts Receivable team can stand toe-to-toe with the country’s best commercial collection agency. There’s no shame in having confidence in your team, but overestimating their abilities could end up costing you.

Debt recovery is just one facet of your A/R department’s role in your company. If they already have a lot on their plate before you pile on collections, they may not give these accounts the attention they deserve.

Compare this to a debt collection agency, the sole focus of which is to collect bad debt. Here at Summit A*R, we make it our priority to give your overdue accounts our undying attention.

On top of that, the top commercial collection agencies have powers that your in-house team does not, including:

  • Credit reporting: As a national debt collection agency, we can report your customer’s delinquencies to the major credit bureaus.
  • Skip Tracing: We have an entire department devoted to tracking down hard-to-find customers who skipped town after leaving behind bad debts. A licensed private investigator heads up our skip tracing team to ensure we’re the best at what we do.
  • Full-Service Litigation: On rare occasions, your debtor may need to be taken to court. We partner with talented attorneys who can help you win the case.

2. Debt Collection Services Are Unethical

If you spend enough time searching the web, you’ll find horror stories about determined collection agents harassing customers. These agents break all the debt recovery rules, resorting to lies, intimidation, and other underhanded tactics to squeeze the money out of a customer.

These bad apples don’t care about the stress or frustration they cause when pursuing debt, and this careless attitude casts a long shadow over the entire industry.

This misconception is perhaps the most damaging, as it tarnishes the good work that caring debt collection agencies can do for you. Like us, legitimate agencies follow all the rules and regulations to ensure a hassle-free experience for debtors.

What’s more, friendly agencies like Summit A*R genuinely respect the other person on the phone.

It’s part of our “P.H.D. Philosophy.” Short for Preserve Human Dignity, it ensures we always approach collections with professionalism, integrity, and respect. Starting from a place of compassion helps our team move out from the shadow of those bad apples, one case at a time.

3. You Can’t Collect Debt Past the Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations on debt is an important timeframe to keep in mind when collecting overdue payments. Think of it as a stopwatch marking the time you have left to take your debtor to court. Once time runs out, you may not sue your customer over what they owe.

At this point, debt that exceeds the statute of limitations becomes what’s called “time-barred debt.” Time-barred debt may not be taken to the courts, making it more challenging to collect — but not impossible!

Here at Summit A*R, we routinely deal with challenging debt, and we think our reputation speaks for itself. Over the last 24 years, we’ve recovered millions in bad debt with a recovery rate that’s twice the national average.

4. Only Big Clients Can Call a Collection Agency

Our team has a broad understanding of industries to help with any debt transaction. This flexibility allows us to cater to all businesses, big and small. It doesn’t matter if you’re a mom and pop outfit or a corporation with thousands of people on the payroll. We apply the same due diligence to each case.

While we may have built a reputation for taking on the fast-paced corporate world, we can scale our expertise to meet any sized company. This flexibility in a collection agency is one of our top 3 tips for commercial debt collection success.

As one of the country’s best collection companies for small business owners, we don’t apply minimums. We’re ready to help regardless of how many accounts you have or what they’re worth, so don’t be intimidated.

5. Debt Collection Services Will Hurt Your Reputation

Worried sales will drop like flies once word gets out you’ve hired our debt collection services? Don’t worry — all the best businesses make sure they get paid, and your customers won’t begrudge you for protecting your cash flow.

If anything, our work to recover bad debt will earn you a reputation as a caring and understanding business. Our agents pursue debt with kindness and respect to foster goodwill with your customer while protecting your bottom line.

We believe a little dignity goes a long way. It preserves the relationships you worked so hard to create and improves your customer retention. Once your customer is back on their feet, they’ll remember you treated them with compassion during a rough patch and return the favor as a loyal client.

6. A Collection Agency Can Only Help with Unpaid Bills

Unpaid bills and rent may make up the lion’s share of consumer debt recovery, but it hardly shows an accurate snapshot of what we do. Here at Summit A*R, we pursue revenue in all its forms, including leased equipment, assets, and employee reimbursement.

We know what to do when reimbursement goes wrong, as our team has handled commission recalls, overpaid salary, unauthorized expenses, and more. We also have specific experience recovering leased equipment in the construction, cellular, and medical fields.

Don’t Let These Misconceptions Stop You from Recovering Debt

Did any of these myths sound familiar? If you’ve thought something similar, now you know what they really are: excuses not to get in touch.

Like any industry, there may be a few bad apples that tarnish the debt collection name, but they aren’t an accurate representation of our services. We bring back humanity to debt collections, and we care about how we recover what’s yours.

Still have questions about our methods? Check out these FAQs to learn more about our services, and don’t hesitate to reach out to speak with one of our representatives.