Debt collectors to be licensed after Bill passed in Parliament

Debt collectors to be licensed after Bill passed in Parliament


Members of Parliaments (MPs) welcomed the Costs as “timely” yet sought clarifications on its scope, for example whether the Bill would certainly set out what is regarded as improper debt collection conduct.

MPs Yip Hong Weng (PAP-Yio Chu Kang), Louis Chua (WP-Sengkang), Leon Perera (WP-Aljunied), Dennis Tan (WP-Hougang) and Foo Mee Har (PAP-West Coast) asked if there were clearer regulations determining which methods were unacceptable.

Ms Foo said a code of practice would be useful “to prescribe a clear group of lawful practices”.

“It should consist of clear rules associated with what is and what is not allowable, in order to supply debt collectors with an obvious framework within which usually to operate, and I think along with educate debtors on their rights, ” the lady added.

Mr Chua raised an example of a debt collection agency that livestreamed the process of demanding pay back and uploaded movies exposing debtors’ people online.

For this, Ms Sun reiterated that the Government would certainly introduce regulations prohibiting behaviour that threatened the physical basic safety of the debtor or any type of other third celebrations.

“Livestreaming of debt collection activities in and of by itself is not an offence unless it crosses the threshold intended for other criminal offences such as the Protection from Harassment Act, ” she added.

On whether you will have a code associated with practice, Ms Sun said that since there are rules to guide the conduct of debt collection companies and their collectors, the ministry will not intend to issue the code of practice for now.

In response to Mr Tan’s issue about additional rules, Ms Sun stated that the ministry does not take plans to bring in regulations on restricted debt collection conduct beyond those stated in the Ministry of House Affair’s public appointment paper.

The paper’s debt collection guidelines and offences for people state that a financial debt collector must not screen or use in physical form threatening words, conduct, or display notices about debts outside the debtors’ property, among other regulations.

MP Murali Pillai (PAP-Bukit Batok), asked for the “rules associated with engagement” in the event of conflicts between debtors and collectors.

Ms Sun responded that will debt collectors will be needed to ensure that there is an appropriate contract detailing the particular terms of scheduled appointment by the creditor, your debt amount, the payment schedule and the debtor’s identity, in order to minimise disputes.

In situations where victims’ identities are misused by impersonators to borrow money, debt collectors will be needed to verify the identity of the subjects they will collect from against the contract.

“The debt collection regulations may also prohibit debt collectors through continuing to collect financial debt from a debtor when the debtor has educated the debt collection business or collector the fact that debt is in challenge, or that the debtor has initiated a procedure to settle the debt via other means (such as mediation or even court proceedings), ” said Ms Sun.