Consumer Protection BC is responsible for enforcing debt collection laws in BC. This includes debt collectors who are either located in British Columbia, or contacting BC residents about debts.
If you are being contacted by a debt collector, here are some tips to help you understand what is and what isn’t permitted under the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act.
Collection agencies can:
- contact a debtor at their place of employment to:
- obtain their home address or phone number,
- make one attempt to contact the debtor when they have not been able to reach them at home;
- contact the debtor’s employer to confirm their employment, business title and business address;
- contact the debtor’s family, friends or employer in an attempt to obtain their home address or phone number;
- call between the hours of 7 am and 9 pm, Monday to Saturday, at the debtor's local time;
- call on a Sunday between the hours of 1 pm and 5 pm at the debtors local time; and
- take legal action against a debtor.
Collection agencies cannot:
- call on a statutory holiday;
- continue to contact you if the debt has been properly disputed;
- collect or try to collect without being holding a valid debt collection agent license;
- place a collect call to a debtor ;
- ask that money be sent in a way that would cost the debtor money (ie registered mail)
- continue telephone contact if the debtor has properly requested communication in writing;
- give the debtor a document that is made to look like an official court document when it isn't.
If you have inquiries or concerns contact the Consumer Protection BC Inquiry Office. If you need some sample complaint templates, please click here.
To obtain additional information about debt collection practices click here.