Like other Maryland residents before you, your financial situation appears to be in a downward spiral. No matter how much you cut corners, your efforts to address your overwhelming debt on your own does not yield results. Making the situation worse are the constant phone calls and other contact, demanding payment, and you suspect that the behavior crosses the line into harassment from creditors.
Your suspicions could be correct. A lot of people here in Maryland and elsewhere do not know where the line is for creditors when it comes to making contact with consumers, and some debt collectors will take advantage of that fact. Those attempting to collect a debt must do while following certain rules. For instance, they can only contact you within certain hours of the day and should not release information about your debt to other people.
They may contact you at work, but you can ask them to stop. If they continue to do so anyway, it could constitute harassment. Debt collectors cannot lie to you about who they are or the measures they can take to collect the debt. Some will makes threats such as telling you that you could be arrested for not paying what they say you owe.
While you can take action to stop harassment from creditors, doing so will not resolve your financial situation. You still need a more permanent solution to your circumstances, and bankruptcy could provide you with a solution for both of your problems. Once you file for bankruptcy in Maryland, an automatic stay goes into effect that prevents creditors from contacting you or engaging in any other collection efforts without further order from the court. In addition, successfully working your way through the process could result in a discharge of qualifying debts, which could give you the freedom to start over financially.