Towards the end of the 1960s, the credit financed purchase was well established in Sweden. The Swedish households were able to purchase goods, which had been considered unnecessary, or even luxurious, in the past. On the other hand, effective means to handle the increasing amount of debt and potential debtors were introduced; credit rating was registered, trade with insecure claims increased and if debtors could not fulfil their obligations, the creditors often used harsh or undue methods.
By introducing Inkassolagen (1974:182), the legislator hoped to regulate the debt recovery process and ensure the fair treatment of debtors. The legislator also introduced liability for damages caused by a creditor in the collection process. Thus the debtor may claim damages when he or she has been exposed to an undue collection method, which has violated the debtor’s integrity or personal life. Compensation comprises economic and/or non-pecuniary loss that the debtor has suffered. From the beginning, it was noted that the liability rule was vague and imprecise, but the legislator was convinced that the rule would be clarified by the courts and regulations decided by datainspektionen, the supervising authority.
Collection methods are methods used to force the debtor to fulfil his or her obligation. Normally, the creditor puts pressure on, or threats, the debtor. This procedure can be regarded as an exception to the state’s monopoly on use of force, and therefore it is not hard to see the necessity of the regulation. It should be noted that certain collection methods can be made subject to criminal prosecution, e.g. fraud, slander or libel.
From an economical point of view, a well-functioning collection process is vital to an effective capital market. The obligation to repay a loan must not be forgotten; if debtors where not obliged to fulfil theirobligations, no one would be interested in making capital available for finance. But does this mean that creditors should be able to use any means available in the collection process?
Based upon the prerequisites mentioned above, this thesis comprises a traditional legal and an economical analysis of the liability rule in inkassolagen. It has been the author’s intention to separate the two different views as far as possible.
Ekonomiska institutionen , 2004.
Law, inkasso, ren förmögenhetsskada, inkassoåtgärd, inkassolagen, rättsekonomi