Bankruptcy is not the answer for every debt problem. A good bankruptcy attorney should help you explore all of your options before recommending a bankruptcy. There are several alternatives to filing bankruptcy depending on your goals and the type of debt you’re dealing with. The staff and attorneys at Murff Law Offices begin an analysis of your financial situation with reviewing:
- Your total amount of debts
- Your types of debts (for example if you’re dealing with current credit card balances vs. payday loans)
- Your Income and assets
- Your future goals
If you only have a handful of creditors, debt settlement is often a viable alternative to bankruptcy. The attorneys at Murff Law Offices are experienced in assisting with debt settlement. In some cases creditors will require a lump sum payment, and in others monthly payment plans on a reduced amount of debt are available.
Stop Harassing Phone Calls
If your goal is to stop harassing phone calls to your work, your phone, or your family members, you can often utilize state or federal collection laws to stop creditor calls altogether. The Fair Debt and Collection Practices Act or FDCPA gives you rights against abusive or harassing debt buyers’ collection activities. Even retaining an attorney for a small amount allows you to tell debt collectors that you’ve retained an attorney and your attorney is handling all of your collection calls. If the debt collector calls you again after that, they could be in violation of the law and subject to damages and fines. Each violation can result in a minimum $1000.00 fine. The attorneys at Murff Law Offices will help you stop the collection calls as soon as the very day of your appointment, even if bankruptcy isn’t your best option.
Type of Debt is Critical
The type of debt you have is a very important factor in whether you may have good alternatives to bankruptcy. For example, there is a big difference in dealing with 1 credit card with a $5000 balance, versus dealing with 10 payday loans totaling $5000. Your chances of settling 1 credit card is far greater than settling 10 paydays loans, not to mention the dramatically different interest rates. The attorneys at Murff Law Offices will help you determine the types of debts you are dealing with, and will discuss possible alternatives to filing for bankruptcy.
What if I Don’t Know How Much Debt I Have or What Type of Debt it is?
If you don’t understand your financial situation, you are not alone and your struggle is more common than you think. Debts are bought and sold frequently, and it’s easy to lose track of how much and even to whom you owe. The attorneys at Murff Law Offices will help you understand your financial situation and will educate you about free resources available to better monitor your credit and debts.
Free Credit Report and Credit Karma
Federal law requires the 3 major credit bureaus to provide free access to your credit reports at least once a year. Unlike the commercials you might see on TV advertising free credit reports and then requiring a debit or credit card, www.annualcreditreport.com is a government sponsored website that lets you log in to download your credit cards with no strings attached. And www.creditkarma.com free ongoing monitoring of your credit. These are just two examples of the many ways you can stay on top of your creditors and better understand your debts.