HI Jason, I feel for your situation…I think most CC companies will settle for less, because at least they get paid something. They can put liens on houses all they want, but it’s still not a guarantee. CC’s are unsecured loans, which means they will work with you on a settlement amount. I would suggest calling them and seeing what they will do. The worst they could say is no right? Debt Consolidation is ok too, but why pay them fees when this is something you can do. Unfortunately when people hit rock bottom, there are always people willing to take even more money. They are in it for the business too. Most of the time creditors will take .50 of every dollar and offer alot less. IF you do so, get it in writing and make it official. Don’t take a verbal contract. Give it a try!!
You mentioned permanent disability… Can you do anything for extra money? Let me know what you have found out and if any creditors are willing to work with you… Hang in there!!
You will probably something useful in this video:
Dan do not go to a debt consolidator, they all will rip you off. They are predators.
Instead follow these steps:
Step 1: get a copy of all three of your credit reports.
Step 2: Make a list of every negative account reporting on all of your credit reports. Check to see which are original creditors and which are collection agents. That information should be listed on the credit report. Pair the collection agency accounts with the Original creditor accounts, so that you aren’t double paying on any debts.
For instance; I have Sun Health reporting on my credit report as well as Healthcare Collections. I found out Healthcare Collections is collecting for Sun Health, so I pair them under one heading.
Sometimes you will have 2-3 Collection Agency’s trying to collect for one debt, that gets confusing. What I did recently was send a small electronic bill payment ($20) to the original creditor and tracked where it ended up. This electronic payment did not give the original creditor access to my account or my routing number or any other info, I double checked and verified with my bank. I made phone calls and got copies from my bank and etc.. The original creditor recieved the payment, this was confirmed thru fax from my bank so I have a paper trail. I called the original creditor to see if the payment was applied to my CHARGED OFF account. They said they recieved the payment but it was not applied to the account and that they forwarded it to First Financial , a collection agency, and they gave me the phone number for F.F.. I googled First Financial and found https://www.ffin.com/ so I would have their info. I called F.F. they said they didn’t have a record of the payment and if they recieved it they would have sent it to Receivables Performance, who they outsource to. So I googled R.P. then called R.P. who was very rude, hung up on me twice, said they didnt have any money from me, etc.. The third time I called I opened the conversation with “Hi, before I begin I want to let you know this call is being recorded”. They didn’t hang up on me that time. The lady answered all my questions, claims they didn’t have a check.
Cool, everyone denied receiving payment, I have proof that it was recieved by atleast The Original Creditor including phone calls made directly to all three companies by MY BANK who recorded the conversations.
My next step was sending a Certified Mail Return Reciept letter to the Original Creditor, F.F., and R.P. It opened with this statement “This letter is being sent to Original Creditor, F.F., R.P., Arizona State Attorney general Terry Goddard, The Better Business Bureaus, Bureau of Financial Institutions, and any other people they could get in trouble with on the Federal level.
In the letter I stated all of the above info including that R.P. was rude, I ended the letters stating that I would be foolish to send any of the companies any further payments as they are “losing” my money along the way.
I sent those letters so that I would have written proof that I made every possible effort to pay on my debt but that there seems to be some fraudulent activities going on. This will help in case they EVER try to seek a judgment against me. I will show in court that I wanted to pay and have proof of an attempt, but that my payments were “lost”.
I sent those letters last Friday, so I’m awaiting a response.
Step 3: If you have the money to make a settlement, figure out how much you want to pay each creditor and then first try to get a Pay For Deletion (PFD). This will vastly increase your credit score as the debt will be completely removed from your credit reports. Some companies will refuse this but it’s always worth a try first.
If they refuse the PFD, try to get them to agree to some sort of action that might help your credit, like stating “pays as agrees” on your account, or something of that nature.
BTW getting them to put Paid Account or showing a ) balance, DOES NOT IMPROVE YOUR CREDIT SCORE.
Step 4: Get EVERYTHING in writing BEFORE you send your settlement payment.
If contact info is not on your credit report, GOOGLE the companies for their info.