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A bill and account collector, sometimes called a collection agent, is someone who tries to recover payment on overdue bills. They negotiate repayment plans with debtors and help them find solutions to make paying their overdue bills easier. Many bill and account collectors work in a call centre for a third-party collection agency rather than the original creditor.
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A bill and account collector will generally contact debtors by phone, although sometimes they do so by mail. They use computer systems to update contact information and record past collection attempts with a particular debtor. Keeping these records can help collectors with future negotiations.
A bill and account collector will typically do the following:
The main job of a bill and account collector is to find a solution that is acceptable to the debtor and maximizes payment to the creditor. Listening to the debtor and paying attention to his or her concerns can help the collector negotiate a solution. After the collector and debtor agree on a repayment plan, the collector continually checks to ensure that the debtor pays on time. If the debtor does not pay, the collector submits a statement to the creditor, who can then take legal action. In extreme cases, this legal action may include taking back goods or disconnecting service.
Collectors must follow federal and local laws that govern debt collection. They usually have goals they are expected to meet. Typically, these include calls per hour and success rates.
Many bill and account collectors work in a call centre for a third-party collection agency rather than the original creditor. Some work in-house for the original creditor, such as a credit card company or a health care provider. The day-to-day activities of in-house collectors are generally the same as those of other collectors.