Debt Settlement Lawyers
Debt settlement lawyers are usually hired to represent those who have more than $25,000 in debt. While those in higher income brackets may have investments and savings that they can use to pay off debts, they still may need a lawyer's help. No matter how much money someone has, they may not be so skilled at money management, so they may hire a debt settlement lawyer.
Choosing a good debt settlement lawyer can help you achieve the most favorable terms when you finally negotiate a settlement. To choose wisely, you should first consider the debt settlement lawyer's credentials and experience, as well as their personality. You should also take into consideration referrals and reviews from those who've used debt settlement lawyers before. Once you've assembled a list of potential bankruptcy lawyers, choose one that meets your needs and your budget.
Most people feel more comfortable choosing a debt settlement lawyer who has years of experience. You should choose a lawyer that has both legal and debt settlement experience, and ensure that your chosen lawyer is licensed to practice where you live. You should meet with them beforehand, so that you're comfortable. A prior consultation will also help you determine your lawyer's level of confidence in handling your case. Ask the debt settlement lawyer about their caseload; a lawyer whose docket is full may not have the time they need in order to give your case the required attention.
When selecting a debt settlement lawyer, it's best to choose one who specializes in the field of debt relief and negotiations. Most likely, they've already built a list of relationships and contacts they can contact for help. A good debt settlement lawyer can give you a much more realistic picture of your outcome. There are both advantages and disadvantages to hiring a debt settlement lawyer. You'll no longer have to deal with your creditors directly; your lawyer represents you and negotiates on your behalf. Some creditors actually prefer negotiating with lawyers, and a good debt settlement lawyer will know how to get black marks removed from your credit report.
The main disadvantage to hiring a debt settlement lawyer is that it will not necessarily prevent your creditors from suing you. Almost all settlements are paid in a lump sum, meaning that unless you have a lot of cash, you'll be paying installments to your lawyer for a while. When you've paid enough, your lawyer will contact your creditor; while you're paying monthly payments, you still run the risk of being sued.
Some debt settlement lawyers charge flat fees, but most work on a percentage. Some will offer you a refund if they are unable to reduce your settlement account. Before you hire a debt settlement lawyer, you should talk to a bankruptcy attorney, who can look at your financial situation and advise you whether or not you should file bankruptcy or seek debt settlement.