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Debt-reduction calls via robocalls

Did you know that the National Do Not Call Registry contains more than 229 million phone numbers, and more than 7.1 million complaints to the Federal Trade Commission were received from November 2016 to October 2017? The majority of calls: marketing calls for debt reduction, warranty plans, and vacation and timeshare plans.

It may come as no surprise that a number of these complaints are regarding robocalls -- and debt-reduction. Debt-reduction marketers are fervently trying to take advantage of using a recorded message to reach out to as many people as possible.

What you should know: Most of these are scammers. Pre-recorded sales calls, whether your number is on the Registry or not, are illegal. If you are on the Registry, you should hang up and report the call. You can report unwanted calls or register your number.

In addition to debt reduction calls, many people are getting an abnormal amount of fake debt collection calls. Don't fall for either. If you are seriously facing debt and debt reduction appeals to you, there are ways that you can tackle the problem without getting scammed.

One of the ways to find debt relief is by considering bankruptcy. Bankruptcy has helped many people get a fresh start on life. Living under a burden of debt is like having a heavy weight on your shoulders.

There are two types of bankruptcy that most individuals or couples usually file. Your attorney can tell you which is right for you.

Chapter 7 is commonly filed by those who own the basic necessities and have mostly unsecured debt. Chapter 13 is more commonly filed by those who have more equity in assets and property, and have a steady income, but are just overburdened.

Either one will help you get that heavy burden lifted off your shoulder by providing debt relief. As a bonus, when you file bankruptcy, "legitimate" debt collection calls are stopped immediately.

Source: Federal Trade Commission Consumer Information, "What’s up with the National Do Not Call Registry?," Amy Hebert, Dec. 18, 2017

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