New legislation attached to the congressional budget could allow loan servicers to use robocalls to collect on federally backed mortgages, student loans and other debts. Prior rules allowed loan servicers to robocall debtors with verified phone numbers, and only with their consent. Loan servicers argue that debtors who receive robocalls are more likely to make payments and bring their balances into good standing.
Even if robocalls are “more effective” in securing payments, harassing debtors is likely to cause unnecessary levels of stress, anger and worry. In 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) received 215,000 complaints about robocalls. The FCC numbers suggest many consumers will not tolerate having constant phone calls that remind them they are behind on payments.
How to Block Robocalls with Smartphone Apps
Although you should never hide from your finances, it is understandable that some debtors would want to avoid blatant harassment while devising solutions to pay off debts. Fortunately, several mobile phone apps are capable of blocking unwanted robocalls.
- For iPhone users, Robokiller is a free app that will blacklist unwanted callers. Robokiller acts as a guard by identifying robocallers and recording when call attempts are made. The app works in many of the same ways as antivirus software would for a personal computer. An Android version of Robokiller is currently in development.
- For Android users, Safe Call Blocker will blacklist and block unknown numbers. Like Robokiller, the app works as a personal guard that blocks and records information on unwanted calls.
- Windows phones can use CallGuard, an app that allows users many options to customize their no-call blacklists.
Although these apps are useful as temporary solutions for stopping robocalls and other debt collectors from contacting you, loan servicers can resort to other methods. Depending on the situation, filing for bankruptcy can become a more permanent solution for putting an end to the annoying phone calls and sleepless nights worrying over debts.