What Is the Job Description for a Debt Collector?

A debt collector or bill and account collector works to collect past due debt from consumers. They may locate consumers who owe money to a client, inform consumers about overdue bills, negotiate for payment of money owed or track down consumers who owe money and try to collect it from them.

Generally, debt collectors contact debtors via phone or by mail. They record past collection attempts and update debtor information into the clients' computer systems. The bill collector works to find a solution to maximize payment for the creditor by working with the debtor. Bill collectors are required to follow federal and state laws in regards to debt collection practices.

Many bill collectors have only a high school diploma. Experience working in a call center can be helpful in landing a job collecting debt. On-the-job training is generally provided, and it is helpful if the candidate for a debt collection position has good negotiation and speaking skills.

The average salary for a debt collector in 2013 was $15.83 per hour or $32,920 per year. The highest paid debt collectors made more than $49,120, and the lowest among the profession made less than $22,030. The best-paid bill collectors were those living in San Francisco and San Jose, California and Waterbury, Connecticut.