Freeman Cebu Business

Another victim of unfair collection tactics

C&C VIEWS - Ed Limtingco - The Freeman

I received another email from a debtor who is asking for my advice regarding her situation. The email sender claims that she experienced being a victim of unfair collection tactics. As a Professional Debt Collector myself, I am not condoning any form of delinquencies, evasion and/or non-payment of a valid account. However, what I am advocating is that there is what we call “ethics in collecting” or professional rules of engagement being outlined by no less than the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas under Cir. 454 Series of 2004.

Let me share with you the content of the email (portion of which were edited to protect identities), her email reads:  “Dear Sir, While reading your column with title "Victim of unfair collection tactics (part 2)" I was a little relieved with what I am going through this past weeks. To be able to give me peace and hoping to get your opinion/views I would like to ask your permission if you could help me enlighten with my current dilemma. Here is my story: I have car mortgage with one of the financing here in Metro Manila. this is the 2nd time I re-mortgage my car to them. the first one I was able to fully pay it. On the 2nd re-mortgage I can say there are times that I failed to fund my check as during that time I was pregnant and was on bed rest for almost of the entire pregnancy due to difficult/complicated pregnancy. However even with the situation I tried my best to pay my past dues and current dues. After I gave birth, their collector give me the option to restruct my loan to lower down the amortization for me to afford since I am not working yet. This option is I thought a good during time. Now on the 1st 3 months my issued check got bounced but I partially pay an amount which is at least 70percent of the 1st month amortization. Come the 4th month amortization, I ensure that I can already fund the check until to the 6th month which is this Sept. 2014. In short, I have past dues for the first 3 months of amortization but following monthly amortization my checks had cleared.

With the above, last August 1, 2014 I received a text message coming from a friend who is working at Office of Barangay (where i am currently residing and residing for the last 17 years) that I have a letter coming from a law firm. I do not have in mind to whom I owe that would reach to law firm. Since im on my way home and will pass the Barangay Hall I called to her to tell her that I'll be dropping by and get the letter. While at the barangay hall my friend told the barangay employee that I am the person on the addressee. The employee immediately responded that if I am the person who is being served by letter a "Case of Estafa". I felt terribly embarrassed and shaking as I cannot imagine who did that to me and to my surprise it was the collection of this financing company that my car is mortgage. As much as i would like to call them (the financing company) but since its 5:01PM in the afternoon when I received the letter, I decided to call them the next business day which is August 4, 2014.  Come August 4, 2014 I called them, someone answer my call but the person I am looking who sign and send the letter was not around according to the guy. He just told me that he will advise the person handling my account to call me. I waited the whole day but no one called……”

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