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Category: Debt Relief
Debt Management Strategies Before Considering Bankruptcy: Making Informed Financial Decisions

On Behalf of O’Brien Law Firm, LLC

Posted on: September 14, 2023

When it comes to one’s finances, the possibility of declaring bankruptcy might create an atmosphere of uneasiness. However, before really considering taking such an extreme step, it is imperative that you investigate responsible techniques for managing your debt, which will enable you to make well-informed judgments on your finances. This blog was created with the intention of shedding light on viable alternatives to declaring bankruptcy.

Assessment and Budgeting

The initial stage in managing debt successfully involves examining one’s financial status. A thorough budget that accounts for income, expenses, and debts is crucial. Gaining clarity will enable you to pinpoint areas for improvement, thereby streamlining your financial management.

Negotiation with Creditors

Many creditors are willing to negotiate if you’re facing financial difficulties. Reach out to them, explain your situation, and explore possibilities of reduced interest rates, extended repayment periods, or even settling for a lower amount. Clear communication might yield favorable terms and alleviate some of the burden.

Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation involves merging multiple debts into a single loan. This can simplify payments and potentially lower interest rates. Options include personal loans, balance transfers to credit cards with lower rates, or home equity loans if you’re a homeowner.

Credit Counseling

Credit counseling agencies can provide valuable guidance on managing debts. They can help you set up a debt management plan that consolidates payments and reduces interest rates. Be cautious, though, and research reputable agencies to avoid scams.

Legal Protections

Familiarize yourself with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and other relevant laws. These laws protect against harassment from debt collectors and ensure fair treatment.

Seek Professional Advice

If your debt situation remains overwhelming, consulting a certified financial planner or credit counselor can provide tailored guidance. They can help you devise a plan that aligns with your unique circumstances and goals.

In light of this, it is pivotal to investigate these debt management techniques before pursuing bankruptcy. A decision with far-reaching financial consequences, bankruptcy demands thoughtful contemplation. Through proactive efforts, negotiations with creditors, and expert guidance, you can steer your finances toward stability and achievement.

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Debt Relief Options Beyond Bankruptcy: Exploring Alternatives

On Behalf of O’Brien Law Firm, LLC

Posted on: May 10, 2023

Debt can be a substantial strain to carry and it is understandable why some may feel declaring bankruptcy is their only viable solution. Luckily, there are other alternatives available which may provide debt relief without long-term effects of filing for bankruptcy filing – this blog will examine some of these solutions to debt.

Debt Management Plans

Debt management plans (DMPs) offer an appealing alternative to bankruptcy for many people struggling to manage payments, yet do not wish to file for bankruptcy. A DMP works by helping individuals negotiate with creditors to lower interest rates and eliminate certain fees; you then make one monthly payment to a credit counseling agency which then distributes those funds among your creditors – an ideal option if bankruptcy seems like too drastic a solution for you.

Debt Settlement

Debt settlement may also assist those looking to reduce their debt load, as this process involves negotiating with creditors in order to settle debts at a discounted price. While debt settlement might seem appealing, be mindful that it could have serious repercussions for your credit score and future financial wellbeing.

Credit Counseling

Credit counseling offers another alternative to bankruptcy. Credit counselors work with individuals to develop budgets and debt repayment plans. They may also provide guidance on managing money more effectively over time while decreasing debt levels.

Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation involves consolidating multiple debts into one payment. You can do this either through taking out a loan to cover all of your debts or using a balance transfer credit card – both options can make managing debt simpler for you, but when selecting your lender it’s essential that the new monthly payment fits within your budget.

Final Thoughts

Though bankruptcy might appear like the only viable solution to those experiencing debt problems, other strategies may offer relief without long-term ramifications. When exploring your options it’s essential that you consult a reliable financial advisor so they can tailor their advice specifically to your financial circumstances.

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Do You Need to Hire a Debt Lawyer

On Behalf of O’Brien Law Firm, LLC

Posted on: October 28, 2022

If you are having trouble settling your debts or are unsure if negotiating a settlement is appropriate, you might be considering hiring a lawyer to help you negotiate with creditors. However, it is possible to arrange the debt settlement yourself rather than hiring someone to do it.

Can I Settle My Debts on My Own?

Negotiating your settlement may help you to save money and it also puts you in a position to maintain control over the process. Some creditors may be reluctant to settle if you hire someone to represent you in the process. However, debt settlement attorneys may be the best option because they will be able to work out a better settlement compared to if you approaching the creditors on your own.

Advantages Of Hiring a Debt Lawyer

The advantage of hiring a skilled lawyer is that they can provide you with legal advice after analyzing the situation and they can also represent you if the creditor chooses to file a lawsuit against you. They will go over all the possible options and help you to figure out the best option.  A debt settlement attorney can negotiate with lenders to perhaps lower the amount that you owe them. Before hiring a debt settlement attorney, it is important to research what they can do for you.

How Do You Know If You Need a Debt Settlement Attorney?

If you have a huge debt and lack the necessary funds to cater for the debt, you might need to consult an attorney. Hiring a lawyer can be the best move for you because, a debt lawyer can not only offer advice but they can find a way to combine your debts into a single huge debt with beneficial terms of payment. A lawyer will be able to figure out the best strategy that will help you to minimize risk.

How Much Will It Cost to Hire a Debt Settlement Attorney

It is vital to note that when it comes to paying debt lawyers, they are paid on contingency. This means that you might not have to pay anything at first but your lawyer will be entitled to a part of the profit should you win the case. Pricing may vary depending on how much you owe, how much they win you or save you, and where you live.

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American medical debt statistics

On Behalf of O’Brien Law Firm, LLC

Posted on: June 16, 2022

America has a growing medical debt problem. The United States Census claims that 19 percent of households cannot afford medical care.

The Census also says the median amount of debt was $2,000. Medical debt is particularly devastating because it often leads to bankruptcy and the forced neglect of other medical treatments.

Education is a risk factor

Some factors influence the likelihood of medical debt. Education is the largest corollary to unpaid medical bills. Over 26 percent of households without a college degree suffer from some level of medical debt. However, education above a bachelor’s degree does not necessarily decrease the likelihood of debt.

Poor health creates spiraling debt

Individuals with fair to poor health have a much greater rate of medical debt. Still, over 14 percent of healthy households cannot pay for medical bills. These families are at significant risk if an unforeseen medical emergency happens.

High medical debt afflicts lower-income families

High medical debt afflicts only four percent of the US population. The Census measures high medical debt as liabilities over 20 percent of a family’s annual income. The primary factor that contributes to high medical debt is poverty. Households that cannot afford health insurance are nearly three times more likely to accumulate high medical debt. Clearly, the combination of poverty, lack of prospects, and poor health create a snowball effect that seems impossible to alleviate.

Medical debt does not have to be a life sentence. Start by educating yourself about the various tools and resources available to people who suffer financial difficulties. Take the first step today, and start working towards a debt-free future.

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Holiday debt solutions

On Behalf of O’Brien Law Firm, LLC

Posted on: September 27, 2019

Many people living in Mississippi and around the country struggle with being able to pay off holiday debt. However, experts do have some possible options for individuals who would like to pay off their debt more efficiently.

One suggestion is to simply reduce costs. Many families set limits on how much they will spend on gifts for immediate family and agree with friends and extended family to avoid gift exchanges and instead get together at each other’s homes for holiday snacks and well wishes.

For those who do opt to purchase gifts, there are several strategies for paying off holiday credit card debt. The first is the debt snowball or its variation, the avalanche. In a debt snowball, individuals pay off their smallest credit card and then apply the money saved on that payment toward the balance of another card. This provides debtors a sense of accomplishment as debts are erased.

The debt avalanche is a different approach, which involves prioritizing debts with the highest interest rate. While this requires debtors to put off the pleasure of eliminating a debt entirely, it is often a more fiscally prudent option and costs less money over time.

Other options include taking out a personal loan at a low interest rate to pay off all credit card balances. Similarly, it may be possible to find a low-interest credit card that allows the transfer of high-interest balances. In both cases, however, consumers must be able to manage their existing finances so that they do not create an even larger debt on the new credit card.

Individuals who are concerned about money issues may be able to find debt relief through these methods or bankruptcy. An experienced attorney may be able to review a client’s case and make recommendations as to the appropriateness of a specific strategy.

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