In recent years some Ohio residents have relied on credit cards and other forms of borrowing to get them through some decidedly tough times.
While those debts may have been a source of stress and anxiety for many people, they have also become a means for swindlers to try to take advantage. In a recent development, for example, several people have been the victims of an attempt to be intimidated into paying imaginary debts.
The victims of the scheme were receiving phone calls from people that demanded payment to a supposed debt collector, or face the threat of criminal action. But the "debts" in question do not actually exist.
Although these recent incidents happened to residents outside of the state of Ohio, these types of activities can happen to anyone. This issue is important because the scare tactics being used take advantage of the fear that being in debt can cause, and attempt to play upon those fears to fool people into making irrational decisions.
In this case, the calls may have been regarding non-existent debts, but the tactics used were very similar in nature to real collection efforts. Callers were reportedly abusive and threatened criminal penalties for nonpayment. Even real debt collectors are generally prohibited from claiming that a person could be imprisoned.
There are a number of unlawful practices that debt collectors may use to try and get people to make a payment. Knowing what these are can help people understand their rights and avoid becoming victims of illegal collection efforts. Ohio residents who have debts to repay, for any reason, have the right to do so without being abused or hassled by their creditors.
If you are concerned that you have been the victim of a debt collection fraud like this one, or you are concerned about abusive debt collectors attempting to come for your money, then you may want to speak with an attorney who can advise you on how to effectively deal with pressure tactics of over-aggressive debt collectors.
Source: KJCT, "Residents get fake debt collector calls," June 26, 2014