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Like all industries we use language and acronyms peculiar to us but baffling to customers of our clients and often clients themselves. The guide below should help.

DCA – A debt collection agency

Customer – A party who owes money to the business we are working on behalf of.

Client – The business we are working for

FCA – The Financial Conduct Authority. If a DCA handles accounts regulated under the Consumer Credit Act, they must be regulated by the FCA.

FSA – The Financial Services Authority who used to regulate the financial services industry, now replaced by the FCA

CCA – The Consumer Credit Act. Governs how regulated debt should be sold, administered and collected. If you are a customer, the debt may be regulated or unregulated.

CSA – The Credit Services Association. The largest representative association of the UK’S debt collection industry. We are full members.

CAB – Citizens advice bureau

Debt Management – Usually refers to a private agency who must be regulated and who offer debt advice to customers usually for a fee. Must not be confused with a debt collection agency who cannot offer advice

Legal Action – In this context it does not mean collections activity we are undertaking, unless we have specifically advised this. It means applying to a court in order to obtain a judgment which then enables our solicitors acting for us on behalf of a client to use enforcement measures like a bailiff to secure payment of our client’s money.

Field/Doorstep Action – Means we have instructed a professional agent to attend your property with the objective of negotiating payment with you. You will be clearly informed of this beforehand. The agent must have ID which you should ask to see and they cannot enter your property unless you invite them to.

DPA – Data Protection Act. Designed to protect confidential information. If we contact you or vice versa we must establish that we are speaking to the right person and we usually ask for two pieces of unique information. If the agent refers to DPA considerations, that’s what they mean.

TCF – Treating the customer fairly. A cornerstone of our training policy for every Oriel colleague

Means Form – If you cannot pay in full and need to arrange a payment plan, we may send you one of these to identify a fair payment plan that takes account of your income and expenditure but returns the maximum affordable amount on a regular basis to our client.

Oriel (Definition) – A form of bay window which projects out from a main wall of a building but does not reach the ground.