CHOICE membership

Debt collection agency tactics

My wife and I have been harassed this past week with telephone calls, texts and emails from what turned out to be a debt collection company chasing one of my sons. Who by the way is in his 40s and not my responsibility. Is this legal?
More disturbing how did they connect us and get our contact details, particularly when my wife (not my son’s mother) bears a different family name? My son didn’t provide this information.


Some info here:


Sorry to hear you’ve been put through this @clubman. Coercive and harassing behaviour is strictly illegal, so if you know the name of the agency in question, you can report them (and make sure to tell them as much if they call again).

In addition to the ACCC advice, here’s some of our tips:

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Some debt collectors have terrible name for various reasons and usually are only interested in one thing…namely recovering as much money as possibly to cover any outstanding liabilities.

Does your son have a copy of the original purchase or finance agreement to see what information was included in the agreement and supporting documents?

It is possible that these may have a section in the document for next of kin or emergency contact…he may have placed your name in such sections to complete the required paperwork. If such details were provided, the debt collector may be contacting you if they are unable to make contact with your son.

Has your son tried to make contact with the debt collection company to resolve the outstanding debt?

This may stop the debt collection agency contacting you, especially if they don’t have his current contact details. At the same time, your son can also request that they do not make contact with you.

Also, were you a guarantor for the debit?

If you were a guarantor, you have have some obligations in relation to the outstanding debt.

If you have no responsibility for the debt, your name is not on the original finance/purchase agreement documents (or inadvertently provided by other means by your son) and your son does not live with you (and you have advised the debt collection agency such), you would in your rights to ask the debt collection agency to cease making contact with you.

If you are on the do not call register and if they continue to make unsolicited contact, I would advise the debt collection agency that you will be making a complaint with the do not call registry.

A complaint can also be lodged with the ACCC as outlined by @BrendanMays above.


In 2013, the grubs from Collection House were calling our home phone wanting to speak to a relative.
I sent the email below to them and never heard from them again.
Good morning parasites,
Your employees continue to persist in calling my private home telephone number, 0740 XXXXXX.
This number has been listed on the Do Not Call register since its inception.
You have no legitimate reason to either call this number or myself.
Any further calls by you grubs to my home number will be reported to AMCA.
Thank you,
Fred Fearless”


Another article regarding the bottom-feeding grubs at Collection House and their subsidary, Lion Finance.

Absolutely disgusting.


we have met the enemy, and he is ??

A debt collector recently awarded a $3.3 million contract by the Department of Human Services (DHS) to chase money for Centrelink is wholly owned by a company being sued by Australia’s consumer watchdog for a raft of coercive and unconscionable practices.

In an embarrassing twist to the ongoing Robodebt controversy, iTnews can reveal ARL Collect (Pty Ltd), which is wholly owned by Queensland based Panthera Finance, snared a plum debt recovery deal from DHS just weeks before its parent company was hit by landmark legal action from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

Someone will get a bonus for sure :wink:


Many governmental agencies never do serious reference checks and in cases are actually prohibited from doubting any claims made by a vendor in the tender documents. The claims must be accepted on the basis that if they do not deliver recourse can be made under the T&C of the contract. We both know how that goes with the description of same not being appropriate for a general forum.

The procurement system is designed to enable contracts to be let with requisite profits and if any services result that is OK too. This could be a classic case of both issues meeting in one procurement.


This bunch of bottom-feeding parasitic grubs are quite obviously pre-eminently qualified for the robodebt contract.

What was that old saying about birds of a feather?

Absolutely disgusting.


Some lessons to be learnt from this man’s experience. I especially like the quote from Panthera,

“Panthera Finance takes its obligations to its customers very seriously. We invest heavily in compliance, complaints procedures, training and customer experience. Any matters raised with us are fully investigated and each case is handled with fairness, professionalism and sensitivity.”

They are like politicians with scripts to stay on message regardless of the facts or evidence.


As the US goes, so often we follow. It is only a matter of time.

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Panthera are obviously the scum of the earth and Energy Australia is not much better.


A couple of articles regarding telcos and their bottom-feeding debt collectors.