How To Negotiate Credit Card Debt Settlement By Yourself
- Kate Rockwood
If you find yourself crippled by credit card debt, having racked up charges that will be hard to pay off, you might be able to settle your accounts with your lenders for less than what you owe. And you might not need a debt settlement company to do it. Heres how to negotiate credit card debt by yourself.
Settling debt means coming to an agreement with your creditors to pay back part of what you owe while being forgiven for the rest. If youre considering settling your credit card debt, youve probably already missed some payments, perhaps even several months worth. You may have already been referred to a collection agency. All of this puts a big dent in your credit score.
How To File Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
If youve been having financial problems and need help getting them under control, chances are youve heard of filing for bankruptcy. But if youre not familiar with the process of filing for bankruptcy, dont worry its not as scary as it sounds. You will be unable to make sense of it all on your own. you need to hire an experienced bankruptcy attorney.
Negotiating With Mortgage Companies
Mortgage servicers offer many different options, like forbearance agreements, repayment plans, and loan modifications, to homeowners who are having trouble paying their monthly mortgage bills. Your options will depend on the investor’s guidelines and your situation. You won’t be able to do much negotiating in the loss mitigation processthe loan owner has certain options and requirements. But you should be aware of what alternatives are available for your type of loan, like FHA, VA, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac, for example, so you can ask about specific options if the servicer fails to mention them.
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Family And Friends Might Be Contacted
If you ignore a debt collector, they do not disappear. In fact, some aggressive debt collectors will reach out to your friends, family, and neighbors. You may be asking yourself, Is that even legal? Well, in some states, a debt collector is allowed to contact third parties such as neighbors, relatives or even your employer but only in an effort to track you down. The law does not allow a debt collector to disclose the fact that you owe a debt or to discuss your finances with third parties.
Consequences Of Missing One Or More Credit Card Payments
After one missed payment, you will be charged a late payment fee up to $40. If you miss subsequent payments within a six-month period, you’ll be charged up to $40. This fee is added to your balance and starts accumulating interest based on your APR. Some card issuers will waive late payment fees for your first violation or if you contact them and explain why you failed to make a payment.
You will be charged interest on the purchases for the billing cycle, which is the case whenever you carry a balance meaning you fail to pay the full amount owed.
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What Is Unsecured Debt
Unsecured debts, such as most credit card debts, generally require the creditor to file a lawsuit against you and obtain a judgment before it can take drastic collection actions. Once the creditor has a judgment, it might be able to garnish your wages, levy your bank account, or place liens against real estate you own.
What Exactly Is Bankruptcy
Bankruptcy is a legal process that takes place after an individual or company has defaulted on a debt.
Filing bankruptcy allows individuals options to either repay or offer collateral to erase their debts. At the same time, bankruptcies allow the bank or other lending institution to remove bad debt from their ledgers.
When the bankruptcy filer cant repay debts, they typically end up divesting an asset. An asset is anything a company or individual owns outright. For example, buildings, homes, cars, etc.
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How Resolve Can Help
If youre dealing with debt and not sure what to do, were here to help. Become a Resolve member and well contact your creditors to get you the best offers for your financial situation. Our debt experts will answer your questions and guide you along the way. And our platform offers powerful budgeting tools, credit score insights and more. Join today.
What To Know About Debt Sold To Collection Agencies
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Maybe youve recently faced a serious financial hurdle and missed making payments against a credit card balance. Or maybe youre a few months behind on your utility bills. At first, youll find yourself answering phone calls from your creditors trying to get you to pay. Eventually it might take three months or up to six the phone goes quiet, and you think theyve given up.
Unfortunately, its more likely that the debt has been sold to a collection agency, and you can be assured that theyll try their best to collect. The creditor may have given up, but the collection agency wont thats how debt collectors make their money.
In addition to being a tremendous hassle, being pursued by a collection agency will likely have a negative impact on your credit reports. Read on to learn how debts are sold to third parties, what to do when a collection agency is trying to get you to pay and how to resolve the issue.
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Figure Out How You Got Into Credit Card Debt
One of the most important steps to get a handle on credit card debt is to understand what got you into debt in the first place. Otherwise, you may end up in the same boat soon after paying off your current card balances.
Brittney Castro, CFP for the Mint financial app, believes bad habits often stem from a lack of financial literacy. “College students are often offered a credit card on campus or apply for multiple credit cards online, thinking they are more or less free money,” she says. “What they aren’t told is if the balance is not paid off in full every month, they will be charged the credit card’s APR on their balance , which can sometimes be as high as 29.99%. This can quickly spiral into a debt balloon.”
To avoid this situation, it’s important to know how credit cards work. Credit comes in handy in many situations, but the convenience could cost you. The longer you carry a balance, the more you will pay in interest charges. “Proper and smart credit card habits include making payments on time and paying off the full balance every month,” she says. “In other words, only charge it if you can afford it.”
Philippine Airlines Will Retire 777s & A350s
As part of its reorganization plan, Philippine Airlines is planning on reducing the size of its fleet by roughly 21 aircraft, leaving the airline with 70 aircraft. Most significantly, Philippine Airlines intends to get rid of:
- Four of six Airbus A350-900s, which are an average of under three years old
- Four of 10 Boeing 777-300ERs, which are an average of just over seven years old
- An undisclosed number of Airbus A330-300s the airline has 15 of these in its fleet, which are an average of just over seven years old
A few thoughts, based on those wide body aircraft plans:
- The airline sure will have a varied wide body fleet, with two A350s, six 777s, and some number of A330s Im guessing this comes down to agreements the airline was able to reach with leasing companies
- Philippine Airlines flew A350s to London, New York, and Toronto, so odds are that the airline will have cut service to one or all of those destinations these routes have allegedly been losing money, with flights to the US west coast being more profitable
- Philippine Airlines new A350s feature a much improved business class product, so this is bad news for the carriers quest to become a better airline
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Negotiate A Pay For Delete
If you can afford to pay the past-due balance, its worth it to ask the creditor if they can re-age your account such that the delinquencies no longer appear. Creditors arent required to do this, but some will agree if this is the first time youve fallen behind on your payments. Send a letter to your creditor offering to pay the balance in full in exchange for them removing the delinquency from your credit history.
Seek Consumer Credit Counseling
If you were caught up on your payments, but struggling to make the minimums every week, a debt management plan through a credit counseling agency might work for you. Unfortunately, some creditors will require you to bring your account current before theyll agree to a lower interest rate and payment on a debt management plan. If you cant afford to get caught up, then a may not be able to help you save your account from charge-off.
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Be Careful With Cash Advances Before Filing
Cash advances on your credit card can also be a negative factor when you file for bankruptcy. The debt is not discharged if you take out over $950 in cash advances 70 days prior to filing for bankruptcy. This stands regardless if you use that advance for essentials or luxury purchases.
There is an exception for the cash advance penalty. For example, lets say you took out a cash advance to repay student loans. You then get diagnosed with a severe medical condition that renders you unable to work, so you file for bankruptcy. Because you are unable to repay this debt due to extreme hardship, it will be discharged. Note that if you took out the cash advance to pay your student loans intending to discharge the debt in bankruptcy, you can be sued for nondischargeability.
Connect with top-rated bankruptcy attorneys to make sure you avoid issues when you file.
However, if you can prove that the recent purchases are necessary items, such as heat for your home and medical expenses, those may qualify for discharge.
Avoiding Trouble With Credit Card Debt In Bankruptcy
Ensuring that as much of your credit card debt can be discharged is all about timing. If your credit card was used for unnecessary expenses within 90 days of your filing date, theres a chance that balances will not get discharged.
There is also a possibility that you could get in trouble for fraudulent activity if you run up balances just before you file. Credit card companies can make a case to the bankruptcy court that your debt was fraudulent if you made luxury purchases of $600 or more in the 90 days before you filed. Such luxury goods can include things like:
- unnecessary upgrades to your house
- expensive cars
- indulgent spa treatments
However, if you use your credit card for necessary expenses that you simply cannot afford on your income, the debt will be discharged. Examples include essential car or house repairs, gas, medical bills, groceries and other things you or your dependents need to survive.
The best course of action is to talk to a local bankruptcy attorney that is licensed in your state. They typically offer free consultations and can help you come up with the best timeline to file.
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What Happens To Your Credit Card Debt When You Die
If a person with dies, their credit card issuer is notified and will stop assessing penalties such as late fees. Often the debt will transfer to the next responsible party which could be any co-owners of the account, a spouse or the deceased person’s estate. Whether or not debt can be transferred to a spouse depends on whether or not the deceased person lives in a community property state such as Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.
If the debt is transferred to the estate, then it’s the responsibility of the executor of the estate to liquidate any assets necessary to pay off the credit card debt. If the estate is worth less than what is owed, then the debt collectors usually have no recourse for collecting on the debt.
Keep Paying Credit Cards If Bankruptcy Isn’t Needed
When contemplating bankruptcy, the first thing to consider is whether you can afford to pay off your credit cards. Why? Because if you make enough money to do so, you probably won’t qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The court requires filers with significant disposable income to pay some or all of your credit card debt through a Chapter 13 repayment plan. Plus, a bankruptcy filing will remain on your credit report for seven to ten years. So it’s best to consider all available options first.
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Obtain A Discharge From Bankruptcy
After finishing your plan, you will be discharged from bankruptcy. The discharge absolves you of any responsibility to repay any outstanding amount on qualified unsecured obligations . As long as youve made the payments specified in the plan, youre finished. Congratulations!
You may anticipate following all of these procedures nevertheless, circumstances may occur that need you to return to court. For example, if your income decreases, you may be able to petition the court for a reduction in your payments.
Is Debt Settlement A Good Idea Compared To Debt Management
Debt management is another strategy for paying down debt that does not involve stopping payments to your creditors. Consequently, your credit will not be significantly impacted under a debt management program. Debt management is essentially a way of managing your financial life more carefully to allow you to pay down debt more quickly, while getting help from financial professionals to learn to live debt-free in the future.
To learn more about debt management, call for a free credit counseling session with American Consumer Credit Counseling, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping consumers find the best way out of debt.
See what others are saying about our Debt Management Plan:
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ACCC works extremely well with credit card companies to reduce interest rates. I am finally seeing my total debt decreasing. They also encouraged me to try and fit this monthly payment into my budget.
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How To Get Out Of Credit Card Debt
One of the hallmarks of the COVID-19 era has been economic tumult — and recent credit card spending trends reflect this. While the average card balance has increased steadily for years now, it actually fell off during the pandemic, leaving the average American adult with a balance of $5,315 at the end of 2020 — nearly $1,000 less than in 2019. Still, despite that drop, more than half of US adults added to their card balances — yet another example of the unequal distribution of financial hardship we have faced since March 2020.
And, for now, the decline of credit card debt has paused, with $17 billion added to our national balance during the second quarter of 2021. As such, here are some best practices for curbing your spending and hatching a practical, actionable plan to pay off your credit card balances.
Apply For A Student Loan Payment Plan
If you can’t make your student loan payments, a variety of options are available to you. In most instances, you need to take action before you fall too far behind. The options differ based on the type of loan you have. Consolidation might help, but it might also limit your options. Contact your lender or servicer to learn more.
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Ninja Van Becomes Singapores Newest Unicorn After Raising $578 Million From Alibaba B Capital
The bankruptcy filing comes as PAL started downsizing its fleet, with the return of two aircrafts in July to lessors and the delay in the delivery of new planes that were originally scheduled last year and this year to between 2026 and 2030. Downsizing is crucial for the airlines cost-cutting initiatives as the company said this month that continuing losses has significantly strained the companys liquidity position.
Airlines are among the hardest hit by the pandemic as governments around the world imposed lockdowns and restricted cross-border travel to curb the spread of the virus. The International Air Transport Association estimates that airlines around the world will lose about $48 billion this year after incurring about $126 billion in losses last year.
PAL, which reported a record net loss of 73 billion pesos in 2020, continued to bleed this year, incurring a further net loss of 16.6 billion pesos in the first half ended June 30.
The airline currently operates just 21% of pre-pandemic flights, PAL president Gilbert Santa Maria said in a video message posted on its website. Air travel volume tumbled from about 30 million passengers in 2019 to 7 million last year due to pandemic restrictions, he added.