By Shah Peerally, Attorney at Law
With the downturn in the economy, many people are unable to pay their debts. One good option is to look into a bankruptcy. However, for many reasons some people will not be ready to pick the option of a bankruptcy for personal reasons. The other reason many will not opt for bankruptcy is that they clearly do not qualify for it. This does not mean that these people do not want to get rid of their unsecured debts. Financial companies are usually keen to settle the debts provided you can effectively negotiate the settlement especially in times of hardship. To this end, many companies are offering the option of a debt management or debt settlement. While there are many genuine companies dealing in debt management , debt consolidation or debt settlements, others are simply taking advantage of already hurt consumers. Our law firm has made it a duty to help the people who are hurt with debts but who are not willing or are not able to file bankruptcy. We have tried to compile in this guide at least 7 (seven)reasons why an attorney negotiation is better than just using a regular debt relief company:
1. Banks and credit card companies are using lawyers to collect their debts; it is obvious that you are represented by counsel to defend your interest;
2. Under the new FTC rules many debt settlement companies have been forced to stop operation, only few lawyers are now still doing debt settlements. This means your ability of representation is limited to only few legal representatives,
3. If a bank files a lawsuit against a debtor, unless you file a bankruptcy you will need legal representation by an attorney licensed to practice law in your state;
4. Lawyers are trained in the art of litigation and negotiations. A lawyer can negotiate within the legal parameters to settle your debt;
5. Many financial institutions are now refusing to deal with debt settlement companies branding them as “third parties”. However a licensed lawyer is allowed to represent a client to protect the legal interest of the debtor;
6. A lawyer can file a “Cease and Desist” (under the Federal Fair Debtors Collection Practices Act) letter to force the creditors to stop calling the client personally. This can prevent harassment and stress for the client at their home or at their work places. Violation of the “Cease and Desist” letter can amount to penalties on the financial institution; and
7. If a financial institution obtains a judgment against a debtor, the former can file necessary legal papers to garnish your assets, even your checks unless you are judgment proof.
The above are but few reasons to hire an attorney to assist you in negotiating your debts. We always advise the clients to call for a free consultation before they make a decision on whether to file a bankruptcy or settle your debts. For more information please call us on 510 742 5887 or visit us on www.yourdebtsettlementattorney.com
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