Debt Relief Scams
A lot of Americans are now swimming in debt. Making monthly payments, settling late fees, talking to debt collectors while having the fear of repossession or bankruptcy in your head – this is a lot to take. Now with many banks and lending institutions failing around us, and With how finances affect a person’s life, some people are simply desperate to climb out of debt. Sometimes, this desperation drives people into bad choices and makes them fall victim to scams. This happens a lot with debt relief.
There are a couple of different ways to go about the process of debt settlement if you find yourself trying to manage huge debt or several accounts. One way to try to settle your debt is personally. The other way is to find a reputable debt settlement company. Debt management companies can help you get your out-of-hand credit reduced to a more manageable amount; sometimes as much as by a 60% reduction. But finding a debt settlement program is not a walk in the park and you need to make sure you are finding a legitimate company and not a scam.
The first thing you have to bear in mind is not to trust all the things that you found on a certain debt relief firm’s website online. Marketing the company is a normal thing for profit oriented companies and some would do everything to make an impressive overview of the company including going beyond of what they can only actually do. In the case a company offers for a free counselling, you have to make a back ground check if it’s really true.
Debt reduction companies have gotten a lot of bad press in recent years. Stories about people who sign up with a non-profit debt relief company and get ripped off are all too common.
So, if you’re losing sleep over credit card debt what should you do?
Do your homework. Because not all non-profit debt relief companies are scams and not all will rip you off. In fact, many of these companies are legitimate and do help people get out of debt. But consumers are lured in by the word “non profit” and think that the service is free. Just because a company is “non profit” does not mean that it does not charge for their service. The problem is when consumers are charged and do not receive service. That’s where many consumers get ripped off. Payments from consumer are received by the debt relief company, and are not forwarded to their creditors.
Debt relief counseling has its set of negative factors or flaws. For instance the most common problem is illegitimate companies. A huge number of counterfeited firms are present on the internet. The way these companies promote their products, it is apparent to a certain extent that they are not legitimate. For instance, most of the scam firms convince the customers to pay them before the proceedings of the case begin. When the customer pays the company, he has no other option but to accept what is being offered to him through debt relief counseling.
First, it is important to know that there are legitimate credit counselors that can truly help you reduce your debt. But it is equally important to understand that not all credit counselors have your best interests at heart. Knowing the signs of a scam will protect you from ending up in even more debt.
Understand who you are dealing with
Many online companies use a PO Box for mailing purposes to help maintain their personal privacy, but legal companies will not have any problem in supplying a physical address to their potential customers. Therefore, those companies offering a debt relief program that refuse to give anything other than a PO Box may not be completely honest. There should also be contact information readily available on the site, together with a name, email address, and phone number.
If you really want to know how to deal with your credit card debt and avoid scams, you need to look to yourself. Instead of calling a company that promises to get you out of debt, call your credit card company. The best credit card companies will work with you to help you get your debt back under control. Some will lessen the interest or give you more payment flexibility so you don’t get deeper in the hole.