As a business owner, you’re always looking for ways to get paid. But what do you do when your customers start using sovereign citizen tactics to avoid paying you?
Debt protestors, such as sovereign citizens, also known as “Freemen on the Land,” are people who believe that they don’t have to follow the laws of the government. They often use creative (and sometimes illegal) ways to avoid paying debts.
Here are 5 tactics that debt protestors will use to avoid paying you and what you can do about it:
1. Refusing to Accept Mail from You
One tactic that debt protestors will use is refusing to accept mail from you. They may claim that they’re not required to accept mail that’s not sent by certified mail or that’s not addressed to them specifically.
If a sovereign citizen refuses to accept mail from you, there’s not much you can do. However, you can try sending the same letter again via certified mail or hand-delivering it. If the sovereign citizen still refuses to accept it, you can send a notice via certified mail informing them that they’ve been served and that they need to respond within a certain number of days.
2. Refusing to Pay Taxes
Sovereign citizens may also refuse to pay taxes, claiming that they don’t have to because they’re not part of the government. Of course, this is completely false and if you’re owed money by a sovereign citizen who refuses to pay taxes, you can file a lien against their property.
3. Claiming That They Don’t Have a Social Security Number
Another tactic that some debt protestors will use is claiming that they don’t have a social security number. They may say that the government doesn’t have the right to issue them a social security number or that they’re not required to have one.
However, if you ask for their social security number and they refuse to give it to you, you can report them to the credit bureau. This will likely result in their credit score being lowered, which may make it more difficult for them to get loans in the future.
4. Filing Frivolous Lawsuits
Some debt protestors may try to avoid paying their debts by filing frivolous lawsuits against businesses or individuals who are trying to collect money from them. These lawsuits are usually without merit and are meant only to delay or prevent payment.
If you’re being sued by a sovereign citizen, be sure to consult with an attorney as soon as possible so that you can determine whether or not the lawsuit has any merit. In most cases, these lawsuits can be quickly dismissed by the court. Nevertheless, they can create a situation where you’re expending resources on fighting these frivolous claims.
5 . Making Threats
Finally, some debt protestors may resort to making threats against businesses or individuals who are trying to collect money from them. These threats may be verbal or written, and they may be made in person or online.
In some cases, debt protestors have even resorted to violence . If you receive threats from a sovereign citizen, be sure to contact local law enforcement immediately. Don’t try to handle the situation by yourself. They are not worth inviting legal trouble to your doorstep.
Most debt protestors are merely looking for a reaction that they can exploit. If you don’t give it to them, they will scale back those efforts and become more pliable to the legal process.
Sovereign Citizens Can Be Headaches But Do Not Let Them Rattle You
Dealing with sovereign citizens or debt protestors can be difficult but not impossible. If you find yourself owed money by one, it’s important to know that you’re not alone. Many businesses and individuals have trouble collecting payments from these individuals every day. While it can be difficult, there are ways that you can fight back against these tactics . By staying informed and working with professionals when necessary, you can increase your chances of collecting the money you’re owed.
And if you need any extra help collecting payments from difficult people or businesses, then turn to a company whose systems and resources are designed and proven to get you paid fast. Southwest Recovery Services has helped clients get the payments they are owed for many years in some of the most difficult scenarios, and we’re ready to step up for your business. Contact us today to learn more!