[COLUMN] Get out of debt now safely and legally

ARE you sick and tired of being in debt and having bad credit? Do you want to start over but simply don’t know where to begin? Is filing bankruptcy an option for you or are other options available?

These days, you are constantly bombarded with advertising from companies and other professionals offering you their “solution”. But how do you know who to trust and if you are doing the right thing?

I find that a lot of people are mostly concerned about the effects of bankruptcy on their credit more than anything else. Most are under the mistaken belief that once they file for bankruptcy, their credit is ruined forever and that they will never be able to buy a house or obtain credit again. Of course, this is simply not true. Let me explain.

Yes, bankruptcy is reported on your credit record for 7-10 years depending on the type of bankruptcy you are filing but a lot of people quickly bounce back from bankruptcy in as little as 2-3 years.

I also find that most people who are in debt trouble already have bad credit anyway and filing bankruptcy, if anything, can only help them rebuild their credit in the long run. Yes, in most cases that I see, bankruptcy can actually improve credit by allowing the person a chance to start over after wiping out debts.

I see a lot of people on a regular basis who are scammed by debt settlement companies. These are the companies that you see on TV, on the internet or hear about on the radio. I say “scammed” because a lot of these people didn’t really understand what they are getting into when they sign up for their services.

Oftentimes, these companies tell people that bankruptcy is the ‘worst mistake’ that they can make and that by enrolling in their debt management or settlement program, they will be able to help you get out of debt without filing for bankruptcy.

First of all, what they often don’t mention is the fact that you have no legal protection while you are on their program. That’s right. Creditors can still report your delinquency month after month to the credit bureaus. You can also get sued anytime by your creditors. And once they get a judgment against you, of course, your creditors can garnish your wages, file a judgment lien against your property and levy your bank accounts.

Secondly, when you make those monthly payments to a debt settlement company, your money doesn’t just go directly to your creditors. After collecting their fees (which they often don’t clearly explain), the debt settlement company simply puts aside your monthly payments until they have enough to settle with your creditors one by one.

Do you really believe that creditors are willing to wait several years to get paid? No. That is why they often sue and once that happens, you have a big problem in your hands. What about the money that you already paid the debt settlement company? Good luck trying to get any of that money back once they have it.

So, if you are in debt and your credit has suffered as a result, it may be better for you to just file bankruptcy now instead of delaying the inevitable if you’ve already done your best on your own with no success. Rebuilding your credit after bankruptcy is not as hard as you think, and this is often a better strategy than not paying your bills and letting your credit continue to get worse every single month with no end in sight.

If you’ve been struggling with debt for a while now and nothing has changed, when are you going to get so sick and tired of your debt problems to finally do something about it?

I can help you decide if bankruptcy is the right solution for your situation. If it’s not, I will be the first to tell you. If that’s the case, I can help you explore other options that may be available to you.

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The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of Asian Journal, its management, editorial board and staff.

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None of the information herein is intended to give legal advice for any specific situation. Atty. Ray J. Bulaon has successfully helped over 6,000 clients in getting out of debt. For a free attorney evaluation of your situation, please call RJB Law Offices at TOLL FREE  1-866-471-8272.

               (Advertising Supplement)


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