It is an unfortunate reality that some of your constituents will fail to pay for their services or taxes in a timely manner. At a certain point, you will want to retain the services of a debt collection partner to assist in realizing payments on these delinquent accounts. When the time comes to choose a debt collection partner, it is important to find a government collection agency that is suited to your needs. Not all agencies are created equal, so it is important to ask some key questions before choosing a collection partner.
Does the agency collect your type of debt?
Not all accounts are created equal. There are different standards and regulations in place for different types of accounts, so a company that specializes in collecting medical debt probably will not be well-suited to working your municipal accounts. When selecting a collection partner, it is important to ask appropriate questions to determine if the company is equipped to handle your specific account types.
Does the agency’s technology suit your needs?
Make sure to ask questions about the firm’s technological capabilities. A modern agency will use technology to its advantage to operate effectively and efficiently. For example, sophisticated firms will use analytics to determine the best approach to working your accounts. Also, a technologically up-to-date agency will have a web portal to allow you to access and see the status of accounts in real time.
Is the agency national?
Fourteen percent of the American populace moves in a given year. If the consumer who owes you for a delinquent account moves to a different state, it is important to have a collection partner that operates nationwide. Most states require licensing and/or bonding in order for an agency to legally collect from consumers living in that state.
Additionally, while the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) defines collection regulations at the national level, most states have additional debt collection laws to which agencies must also adhere. An agency that only operates on a local or regional level might not have the knowledge to follow all of the relevant state laws, and could thus be putting your accounts at risk.
On a related note, the agency you choose should have a rigorous training and audit system in place to ensure its employees are compliant with the oftentimes complex regulatory landscape.
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About the Author: Ben Fisher
Ben Fisher has been with IC System, one of the largest receivables management companies in the United States, since 2013. He has honed his extensive industry knowledge through his varied roles for the company within departments such as operations, client service, and marketing.