How to Settle Credit Card Debt in Arizona
Credit card debt is one of the most common types of debt, creating tremendous financial burdens. Because of the way credit card interest compounding works, people can find themselves deep in debt rather quickly. Here is how credit card debt can be settled once and for all, without bankruptcy.
Credit Card Debt Settlement – The Process
Believe it or not, there is a method to the madness. Creditors often follow a certain process in escalating credit card debt that is in default. Once a borrower has missed a payment, they will start getting phone calls and letters from the creditor attempting to get the borrower to pay. These calls may be frequent and annoying to say the least. The calls and letters may go on for months.
Credit Card Debt Charge-off
At some point, usually 180 days or six months after the borrower has defaulted (stopped making payments), the bank or creditor will issue a charge-off. Many people mistakenly think this means the debt has been forgiven. It does not. It simply means the bank has recognized that this account is unlikely to be brought current and the lender considers it seriously in default at that point.
After a charge-off the bank may then escalate the account to a different department or sell the account (debt) to a third party debt buyer. What happens next varies greatly depending on who the creditor is, who the debtor is, how long the account has been in default, and many other factors.
At this point, the account may even “go dark” – the borrower may not hear anything from anyone for a period of months or even years. This can sometimes lull people into thinking the problem has simply gone away. Unfortunately, it has not. In fact, the problem is getting worse each day because interest and penalties continue to accrue as the account ages. If your account has been charged-off, call today for a free consultation.
Dealing With Settlement Offers for Credit Card Debt
The borrower may also receive form letters from the creditor or a debt collector offering to settle the account. It is important to be careful in evaluating various offers that are sent. During this part of the process, the borrower has rights and may even have legal defenses to the debt. And it may be difficult to determine if the company making the offer even has the authority to do so. Questions that should be asked about any settlement offer include:
- Who is making the offer?
- Do they have the authority to do so?
- Who owns the account?
- Will I be completely released from the debt, and will my spouse?
- Will there be a judgment entered against me?
And there are more questions. It is important to have an experienced attorney review any settlement proposal to determine the best course of action. What’s a good deal? Is that particular creditor likely to sue? Getting answers to these questions is important. Our firm excels at this and has helped negotiate numerous settlements for a fraction of the balance claimed. We also know how to protect our client’s interest and get a comprehensive settlement and release of the debt.
Settling Credit Card Debt Lawsuits in Arizona
Phoenix Credit Card Debt Settlement Attorney
If the account has not been settled, it may eventually result in a lawsuit being filed against you. The lawsuit may be brought in the name of the original creditor, like Discover, Chase, Wells Fargo, Mutual of Omaha, Citi, American Express, etc., or it may be brought in the name of a debt buyer who claims to own the account.
In Arizona, creditors may have up to 6 years after default to bring a lawsuit against you . This can create quite a surprise if you haven’t heard from the creditor in awhile. And the amount claimed to be owed may be unrecognizable.
Our firm has handled numerous credit card debt lawsuits and can help defend and settle these types of lawsuits. One of the first things we do is evaluate applicable defenses to see if there are grounds for dismissal of the lawsuit. If appropriate, we will then negotiate for a significant reduction in the amount claimed in order to settle the case and have the lawsuit dismissed.
Please note that if you have been sued, it is urgent that you act quickly. You have a very short time period to formally respond to the lawsuit, usually 20 days. Failure to do so can result in a default judgment being entered against you and garnishment of bank accounts and wages.
Don’t let this happen to you. Call for a free consultation with an Arizona credit card debt settlement attorney.