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Firstly, ensure you have everything that you will need ready. Checkout the check list of items below.
Check List for sorting out your Debts:
- Pad and paper by the phone to log calls and make notes
- A means of recording your phone calls- many smartphones have this facility
- Notes on what to say see Banks/Phone Calls or Debt Collector/Phone Calls
- A file or folder in to keep your letters, see Keeping it Organised
Keeping It Organised
Being organised is one of the most important things you can do when participating in a debt program, although many people neglect to do this.
It is essential to keep a record of every email, text or letter that you have received or sent from your creditors and any visits to your home from a bailiff.
It doesn’t cost much to buy a folder or expanding file cabinet and some pockets, and you can get these from any department store or office supply store. It’s always good to keep backup copies of every piece of correspondence, once you begin to keep all the original letters and other communications in your filing system.
Your creditors can sometimes claim unlawful or untruthful things in their correspondence to you, and because of this it is a good idea to keep copies and records of everything as it gives you accurate information should you ever need it. Again, being organized right from the beginning is one of the best things you can do – name and file any letter or other correspondence that you receive, starting immediately. Always make a copy for your own records of any letter that you send out, including any that you sign and then return.
Once you have your filing system in place you want to be sure to keep the copies of forms and letters clean and free from spills or accidents. One easy way to do this is to only put two letters in each plastic transparent pocket; that way, you won’t need to remove the letter from the plastic folder to see what it pertains to, or to read it.
Of course, electronic documentation and contact is all too common these days, and we can help you to get your electronic mail and documents organized and accessible too. Transferring an email to a specifically named file and then copying it to a backup file is easy, even if you don’t have a lot of computer experience and backing up emails ensures you don’t accidentally delete them.
Actual Visits From A Bailiff
You should document any visits to your home from a bailiff in much the same way as you would document a phone call. Make sure you write down clearly as much information as you can, including the person’s name and the company they represent, and any identity number they carry. As best you can write down what they say, including any documentation or paperwork that they say they have in their possession. Of course, make a note of the date and time too, and you should also create a backup of any recording that you make of the visit, whether audio or video.
The importance of having back up cannot be underestimated, and one of your main focuses should be in protecting your data and evidence from such disasters as a burst pipe or a fire in your home. Any information that can be used as evidence or you may want to keep being used in the future should be stored and safely protected. if you have DVDs, back them up and store the backup copies at another location, just to be on the safe side.
Contract law states that only signed and typed contracts are legally binding and acceptable, and for that reason you may find that a party may not always accept or recognize an electronic copy. Faxes are generally acceptable as documentation. It’s worth remembering that it isn’t uncommon for millions of pounds to hang in the balance based on whether a contract is legal or not.
If both parties are agreeable to exchanging contracts by email, then don’t be afraid to use email, although the terms and conditions should be clearly outlined and understood.
Because an electronic copy of a document can be downloaded and then changed or altered in some way before printing it, many companies won’t consider a downloaded and printed document to be acceptable.
It is important that both parties know that they are getting a true copy of the document and that it has not been amended or altered in any way, and for this reason a faxed or written copy is nearly always acceptable. You can’t really alter a fax or written copy of a document without it being obvious and noticeable.
The law dictates that any company that you are opposing can legally demand an original copy of any documentation pertaining to the case, and because of this it is important to make sure you always have the original or a true and accurate copy. Your opponent can conceivably increase their chances of winning if you are unable to provide a true copy, and you are making yourself look as bad as those who are fighting you. The importance of having original documents should be clearly understood and can mean the difference between winning or losing, or of having the case thrown out.