National Student Loan and Credit Report Debt Attorney
If you are considering debt settlement as a way to rid yourself of unwanted debt, you have at least two options: you can hire someone to do it or you can try to do it yourself.
Doing it yourself is almost always a bad idea. The old axiom: "the lawyer who represents himself has a fool for a client" applies to those who attempt to negotiate their own debt. Do you drill your own teeth? Do you cut your own hair? Of course not. You hire a professional because the result matters to you. It is the same with debt settlement. Even worse, your bank and credit card company have spent thousands of hours identifying the best methods to extract more money from you than you want to give them. Lack of knowledge in a negotiation is a very bad thing: people that try to do it themselves don't know what they don't know. Because all creditors are not the same (some will accept less than others and some will demand far more than people read about on the internet), a DIY debt settler will often accept offers that could have been far better and reject offers that will not get any better, often leading to litigation.
Using a lawyer to represent you in these situations makes the most sense from an overall financial standpoint. Because of a lawyer's experience and knowledge, an attorney can likely negotiate a settlement that is more advantageous to you. If you are sued by your creditor to recover a debt, an attorney can represent you and will likely still be able to settle the debt on favorable terms.
Using a lawyer also means that you have strong consumer protections. Most states have recovery funds for clients who are victimized by their lawyers. Most lawyers carry malpractice insurance to provide a recovery mechanism for clients who suffer loss because of lawyer error. Most lawyers, for as maligned as they often are in the press, adhere to a demanding code of ethics that require them to charge a reasonable fee and perform the service set forth in their agreement with their clients.
Lawyers also will require that they meet with you face-to-face. This allows each of the parties to get a feel for who will be working on their behalf. It also allows the prospective client to get a feel for the office environs and form an opinion about the professionalism of the lawyer.
Finally, there are non-lawyers who offer to do debt settlement work for consumers. Using a non-lawyer to debt settlement work on your behalf is likely a mistake. Non-lawyers do not typically carry malpractice insurance. If your non-lawyer debt settlement company, makes an error that costs you thousands of dollars, there is no insurance to compensate you for your loss. Non-lawyers are not regulated by a state bar association like lawyers. If they act unethically in connection with your representation, you are left only with a claim that can only be pursued through the court system or some government bureaucracy.
Non-lawyer debt settlement firms advertise the ease of engaging them. It can all be done over the internet, which is fine unless something goes wrong. Then, there is no place to go to complain, only a phone number and a service agent, often without authority to address your issues.
Worse yet, some creditors won't work with non-lawyer debt settlement companies. Based on their bad experiences, they simply refuse to negotiate with a non-lawyer debt settlement company.
Non-lawyer debt settlement companies have a financial incentive to encourage you to accept less than optimal settlements because federal law does not allow them to take a fee until the settlement is made. To get paid, they have to get you a settlement, any settlement. The settlement can be for far more than is possible with patience and tenacity, but an unscrupulous company will pressure a client to accept the bad offer so they can get their fee. Non-lawyer debt settlement companies, when compared to debt settlement lawyers, often cost their clients more in fees and settlements. You should choose the option that costs you less in terms of the sum of the fee and the settlements paid to your creditors.