Second, there's no guarantee that creditors will accept a partial payment. They may refuse any terms that a bankruptcy alternative proposes, leaving you potentially in worse shape than when you began. Finally, late fees and interest accrue on unpaid balances. That's money you'd have to pay, on top of any exorbitant fees the credit agency itself may be charging. 
Depending on your income and the cost of living in your city, this can be difficult unless you keep an eye on it. If you know you need to make a shift in your spending habits, try using cash. Take out your weekly allowance in cash each week and only let yourself spend that amount until it runs out. If your allowance week goes from Saturday to Friday, and you run out on Wednesday, then get creative for Thursday and Friday.

Debt settlement sounds like a sexy option to consolidate debt. Who wouldn’t want to pay half of what you owe on credit card debt? But this is considered a desperation measure for a reason. The ads boasting that settlement companies like National Debt Relief can get 50% of your debt forgiven, don’t tell the whole story. That figure doesn’t include the fees you will pay, the penalties you incur while settlement negotiations take place and whether a creditor will even accept the offers made. Do all the math before you choose this option.
But beware the fine print. If the 0% offer only lasts six months, be sure you can pay that debt off within that timeframe. If not, you could end up paying higher interest than you were before — and it could even apply to the initial six-month period (look for the term “accrued interest” to see if this might happen). Also, calculate what the balance transfer fee is and make sure that even with the fee, you’ll still save money on the transfer.
Warning: Beware of debt settlement companies that charge up-front fees in return for promising to settle your debts. You can’t be charged a fee before they actually settle or reduce your debt. You should also be cautious of debt settlement companies that instruct or advise you to stop making payments to your creditors. If you stop making payments, you will likely damage your credit. You may face collection efforts, additional late fees, and penalty interest charges, and you might be sued. These fees and charges will cause your debts to grow larger. In this way, debt settlement may cause your total debt-load to grow, even if the debt settlement company settles one or more of your debts.
Credit counseling agencies work with you to get a picture of your entire financial situation, including information on every debt you owe. After gathering the necessary information, the credit counseling agency will work with your creditors to come up with a repayment plan that will work for everyone. Usually, creditors can reduce interest rates, lower monthly payments and sometimes waive fees, but it is important to note that creditors will rarely reduce the balance you owe on each debt.
Debt consolidation loans are a well-known, well-advertised option for consumers who struggle with debt. These credit facilities exist for the express purpose of paying off outstanding unsecured debts and do their job quite well. When you take out a debt consolidation loan, your lender immediately pays off your existing creditors and starts billing you for the balance.
Once you've got a list of counseling agencies you might do business with, check each one out with your state Attorney General and local consumer protection agency. They can tell you if consumers have filed complaints about any one of them. (If there are no complaints about them, don't consider it a guarantee that they're legitimate.) The United States Trustee Program also keeps a list of credit counseling agencies approved to provide pre-bankruptcy counseling. After you've done your background investigation, you will want to  interview the final "candidates."
Debt settlement sounds like a sexy option to consolidate debt. Who wouldn’t want to pay half of what you owe on credit card debt? But this is considered a desperation measure for a reason. The ads boasting that settlement companies like National Debt Relief can get 50% of your debt forgiven, don’t tell the whole story. That figure doesn’t include the fees you will pay, the penalties you incur while settlement negotiations take place and whether a creditor will even accept the offers made. Do all the math before you choose this option.
Who’s it best for? Face-to-face counseling isn’t an option with all debt management companies, but it is with GreenPath. The company has offices in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. If you want a personal touch, the company could be worth a look. It’s also willing to include some secured debt in the debt management program.
Savings: National Debt Relief claims its clients realize an approximate savings of 30% when including its fees. This savings applies only to clients who stay with the program until all of their debt is settled. While National says the majority of people who enroll in the program complete it, some customers drop out for various reasons, including the inability to save enough money to settle debts.
Tally will ensure that you never miss a payment or receive late fees again – as long as you pay Tally on time, then Tally will pay down your credit card balances on time each month. Service is currently available in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, DC, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin. The Tally line of credit is required to use the app. Interest rates are between 7.9% and 19.9% per year depending on your credit history (varies based on the Prime Rate). This information is accurate as of November 2018.
This year, my husband and I made a few changes… we put ourselves on a strict budget and gave ourselves a cash allowance so we wouldn’t even be tempted to use the debit cards “just to grab lunch,” squirreled our credit cards away so we wouldn’t use them, and went through TONS of stuff that we weren’t using anymore and are planning a neighborhood yard sale for the spring.
Revolving (credit card) debt can have a great impact on credit scores as it will increase your balance-to-limit ratio and lower the amount of available credit that you have. The higher your revolving balances inch up to the limits, the more it hurts the credit scores. Depending on the situation and your credit scores, a bankruptcy, debt consolidation plan, or a setup of a budget and timeframe for getting out of debt could be options. Once you’re ankle-deep in revolving debt, it can be tricky to dig yourself out so getting professional advice is important.
The potential to be sued for debts due to non payment is what causes consumers to reach out to a debt settlement attorney to learn further about their options. In my experience consumers typically accuse National Debt Relief of not settling their debts in time to avoid the lawsuit or not informing them that they could be sued on the debts when it all could have been avoided in the first place had the consumer talked to a debt relief attorney from the beginning of their financial problems.
I join national debt relief in July of 2018 I was to make $551 deposits each month into my national debt relief account to go towards payment for the settlements they made with my creditors they made two settlements for me 1 in the amount of $635 and the other for $1,475.76 national debt relief has said in my contract that they would only take 23% of the balance after the settlements have him paid off one of the settlements was supposed to be for 7 months the other was 4/8 months I opted out of the program after 3 months their fees after each settlement was would be completed would be a total of $1,625.28 but seeing as I opted out after 3 months their fees should only be 672 36 and of the $1,296.58 that was left after making my three payments to each of the creditors and after their fee of $672.36 for the three months they work on them I should be getting a refund of at least $624.22 I'm told that I won't get any refund and that I need to contact my creditors and make payments for the remaining months of the settlement even though I deposited money into that account with national debt relief to pay those payments off I understand and I accept that now that I've opted out that I'm responsible to continue the settlement agreement but I should also get my money back that I paid into it for those agreements I should not have to pay the full service fee for each settlement that I would have had to pay after the settlements were complete I should only have to pay service fees for 3 months of each of those accounts and that leaves me with the refund of 624 22 I'm a service connected disabled veteran who is battling cancer and already have financial difficulties I certainly didn't think national debt relief would rip me off and I advise anybody who is in the same situation as me to deal with your creditors yourself because you will save yourself a full service fee that they shouldn't charge for only 3 months of the service

Need to find all the facts and consequences before committing to this or any other service. While there is some positive, there also several negatives to this service, check online.  One of them is you cant contact your creditor and make payments directly to them. You are at the mercy of this service if they don't make payments on time. That will reflect on credit.


I know they stay on your report for 7 yrs……….but out of all of them while the others of course are on the report as not paid, they are not listed in a separate section that says “in collecions”……the ones that were on the report under the collecions status concern me because I ws sued on two of them……the small claims Calvary was very nice….after they obtained the judgment, I offered thme 300.00 and hey volantrly dismissed the judgment……….do you know how many points affect a credit score with a judgment? Portfollio will never get dime from me…..I offered them 1500 when a cousin offered me a loan and they scoffed………the only thing I have in the bank is my own money however I took out a collateral loan against its is secured……assuming if Portfolio tried to get it, then the bank has first dibs……….
Of course, $800 a month in credit-card bills is a lot to handle, which is where debt management comes in. One of the companies I profile further down, InCharge, can help reduce interest rates by an average of 6% to 9%. Assuming the best scenario (a 9% interest rate drop) and a four-year plan, your monthly payment could shrink to $576 (this includes a monthly fee of $49, which could be lower or dropped completely, depending on your situation) and your total interest paid would shrink to $5,276.

There are some downsides though that you have to weigh, our credit scores did drop down to 630-680’s and some creditors list our payments as “late” for some reason. But CareOne said that the late status should change after about 3 months of consistent payments. Some creditors also list that your payments are being made by debt management program which I can assume does not look very good on your credit report.
I initially considered using this program and the first couple of conversations went well. However, after I received a contract offer, I was not comfortable with the system. I was not behind on my payments and did not want to stop my payments for 4-6 months so that National Debt could then step in and negotiate settlements. I did not want my credit score to drop drastically after I worked hard to restore it, nor did I want to declare being insolvent. I instead had secured a loan this past week at a great rate that will have my debt paid off in the same 3 year period as this company's, yet keep and improve my good credit score. I know that many people would not qualify for such a loan and... Read More
Finally, see how much you have left to live on each month. From your monthly take-home, subtract your necessary expenses and your projected 20% debt payment. Divide the leftover by 4.33 to see how much you can spend each week. Is this enough to live on each week for your dining out, shopping, gym, entertainment, travel, gifts, cable, health and other costs?
In addition I had inform them that I was closing the checking account that they had been taking the payments from so they were not to charge that account going forward. That I wouod get back to them with the new information for my new checking account. I purposely had not given them the information because I was researching what my recourse was so when it came time for the payment I hadn’t given the information and on their website it’s it’s showing that I owe them money for fees and they wanted their money so what did they do they charged my old account which had nothing in it so I was hit with a NSF fees and every 3 days I get charged a fee for the negative balance but they got their payment and I’ve got payment it went to fees for the accounts that they lost the settlement because couldn’t make payments to my creditors Beach they had drained my account for all the fees
With it being the third month and nothing had been settled yet I did respond to one of my creditors explaining to them the situation. Disturbing thing is that when I asked her why they hadn’t contacted clear one advantage I was told that they had never received anything from them that’s why they were reaching out to me. At that time I was able to settle the account with my creditor got the direct contact number for the woman that I spoke with and immediately contacted Clear One Advantage.
BBB – National Debt Relief is a BBB Accredited Business with the Better Business Bureau of New York, NY. Not all debt relief companies are accredited by the BBB. We feel this is one of the most important accreditations to have in this industry. The Better Business Bureau is a leader in providing trust to consumers in dealing with any company. Make sure any company you are evaluating to help you with your debt has an accreditation by the BBB.
This is a very important first step before trying to start retiring debt. Having an emergency fund will help keep you from getting deeper into debt when unexpected events happen. If, for example, you have $1,000 in cash set aside and your car or house needs a sudden repair, you do not have to put that repair on a credit card. Ideally, you will want to get to the point where you have an emergency fund worth three to six months of expenses so you can support yourself temporarily if you suddenly lose your job, but the $1,000 is a great start.
Bankruptcy and debt settlement can reduce or eliminate debts, but they severely impact your credit. However, continuing to struggle may actually be a slower, less effective way to get rid of the debt. Debt management doesn’t reduce debts, but its effect on your credit is less severe. And be aware that some types of debts typically can’t be erased or reduced: federal student loans, child support, and secured loans on cars and homes.

First, it can be difficult to complete a debt management program. You’ll lose a large measure of financial freedom — most programs will require you to close all of your credit accounts and refrain from opening new ones. You may be allowed to keep one creditor outside of your debt management plan for emergencies, but if you abuse the privilege, you’ll just dig a deeper hole of debt.

Receiving automated refund checks is great, it’s like finding money on the ground. As it turns out, stores owe you money all the time, but they don’t pay if you don’t ask. That’s where Paribus comes in. They automate everything. Price drop? Get cash back for the difference. Deliveries arrive later than advertised? Get cash back. Effort required? Zero, just how we like it.
It sounds like you have done what you can to protect yourself (credit freeze, law enforcement etc.) I am not sure what your bank will do but I can’t imagine they will pursue you for a crime committed against you. Have you changed the bank account you deposit your Social Security check into? If not, talk with your bank. It would seem to be a reasonable precaution.
Even for non-social activities like personal hobbies, look for ways to cut costs: If you dropped the gym, can you run outside, play tennis with a friend or join the city pools? In lieu of your yoga center membership, try one of the yoga websites that allow you to stream yoga classes online for a small fee each month. Instead of buying all the latest books, dust off your library card. If you're paying a hefty fee for tons of cable channels you don't watch, see if you can use cheaper online providers such as Hulu, Netflix and iTunes or buy an AppleTV to slake your thirst for TV.
Many have heard of the tremendous benefits of compounding interest regarding investments before. However, when related to debt, compounding interest works against you as interest builds upon growing outstanding balances. This means that the longer you hold higher-interest debt, the harder it is for you to get out of debt. A higher-interest debt will cost you much more over time and should be your highest priority in paying off. Typically, credit card debts and personal or small business loans will have the highest interest rates.
Using this service brought me a ton of mental and emotional relief, in addition to financial relief. The stress of this debt has been weighing heavily on me, and the representatives I spoke to were easy to talk to and explained everything clearly and in as much detail as I needed. They were also very patient and genuinely felt like they were in my corner.

Those who enroll make monthly deposits with a credit counseling organization, which then is used to pay the debts according to a predetermined payment schedule developed by the counselor and creditors. Your monthly payment is tailored to what the customer can afford, and you know before agreeing to take part in the program what that monthly amount is. An analysis of household income vs. expenditures determines the monthly payment.

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