Inappropriate collection processes: Bank debt collection department systematically abusing debt collection procedures

This is the second of 3 examples where we were able to identify and rectify a particular organisational issue but our overall experience is that, for the most part, banks, solicitors and debt collection agencies play reasonably fair despite some shocking stories in the news.

From 2008 to 2011 this particular bank collections department was so badly run our clients hardly ever had to settle a personal guarantee debt.

To the credit of the bank they had a total revamp of their systems, wrote off all the old files and started again and this time were on it. However, not quite so good was they built into their system processes that deliberately abused debt collection and even court procedure rules on a case by case basis.

It came to a point that having complained to the department on multiple cases, the head of the debt collection department (who was active with some of the cases where the worst excesses were applied) would respond to complaints made against him and his department.

It took a little time to compile a dossier of 20 cases but the shocking thing was that it represented 90% of all the cases we had with this department.

We sent the report to the director of litigation at the bank’s head office and in fairness to the bank the head of the debt collection department was removed within 21 days.

Ever since that time the department still applies strict policies but in a fair and reasonable way and any abuses are virtually non-existent and certainly non-intentional.

19 September By Mel Loades

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