Organizations in the ARM (Accounts Receivable Management) industry prioritize compliance and accuracy in sending printed collection letters. Most outsource these critical communications to a vendor. Many print and mail companies offer these services, but not all are the same. There’s a major difference you need to be on the lookout for—are they solely focused on secure and compliant transactional print and mail?
If not, accuracy and compliance could be in danger. If you need help with collection letter printing, you’ll want to heed this advice.
Compliance Is Non-Negotiable, But How Do You Evaluate Partners?
Any debt collection communication must follow the rules of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Those rules dictate when you can send letters and what they must contain, including the name of the creditor, the amount owed, and how you can dispute or verify the debt.
New rules were added in 2020 that clarified what information collectors must divulge to consumers about debt and the timeframe to do so. The rule also introduced a model to follow. You must send this validation information at the onset or within five days after initial communication.
Those, along with existing guidelines about letters about design, fulfillment, auditing, and accuracy, define the compliance guidelines to follow. Failure to comply with the FDCPA can result in steep fines.
So, how can you be sure your print and mail provider is an expert on the topic? There are several key things to seek out:
- Do they have a robust compliance program, and can they demonstrate how they maintain this in production?
- Do they have compliance certifications?
- Is there a compliance officer on staff?
- Can they facilitate customizable collection letters and update templates for you?
- What do they have in place to ensure accuracy and quality?
- Do they have solutions for address accuracy?
- What measures do they use to protect and secure data?
- Do they offer a way to track letters and provide an audit log, which you would need if a claim of noncompliance arises?
Ask all these questions and get into the details about how they maintain compliance. With a transactional print and mail company, heavily regulated communications are all they do, so compliance is part of every aspect of the workflow.