It seems that many Americans are being affected by the nations economic woes. This economic downturn has led an unexpected spike in bankruptcies. Last year alone saw 1.4 million bankruptcy filings according to the American Bankruptcy Institute. Do you find yourself drowning in massive debt with no end in sight? While bankruptcy may seem like a viable option, there are alternatives. Consider the following before deciding to follow the bankruptcy route.
Know your rights:
For starters, the first thing you must do is get familiar with your rights. If you are in massive debt, you are more than likely receiving several calls from bill collectors and collection agencies. Thanks to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, you are protected against abusive calls from bill collectors. Get to know your rights and determine when collection agencies are crossing the line. Different alternatives will be provided through the bankruptcy attorney san diego for the filing of the case. Many agencies are offering the benefits to the business person for the profit.
Document any type of abusive behavior and report it to the FTC. If you find that there is clear evidence of abuse, consider filing a lawsuit against the collection agency.
Don’t forget that you still have rights, regardless of the situation that you are in.
Negotiate with your creditors:
Once you have stopped or minimized calls from bill collectors, the next stop to take is to get in touch with your creditors. Get a hold of all of the credit card companies and all places where you owe money. Let them know your situation and try to negotiate for smaller fees and interest rates. One of the biggest advantageous of getting in touch with your creditors, is that it will more than likely buy you some time. This time can be used to help you get back on track with payments that you may have fallen behind on.
Debt management groups:
If you find yourself swimming in debt with no end in sight, consider joining a debt management program. A debt solutions group will help determine the source of the money leak. Once the source is determined, they will also work with you to help lower your bills. They will act as the middle man between you and the credit cards to help lower your bills. In most instances a debt solutions group will help choose the best path for you to take based on your current situation. Keep in mind that you want to contact non profit debt management programs instead of paid ones. Do plenty of research before settling on a debt management program.
Filing for bankruptcy will take a huge hit on your credit. Take a serious look at your debt and current expenses. Cut off expenses that you can live without, and then start to look for ways to reduce your debt without having to file for bankruptcy.