Alternatives to Bankruptcy
Options to Avoid Filing For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Filing for bankruptcy is oftentimes thought of as an "option of last
resort". Although debt relief through bankruptcy might be available
in certain situations, it doesn't necessarily mean that it is the
best option. Individuals should carefully consider if any available alternative
debt relief options exist that can help avoid filing bankruptcy.
When working with a lawyer experienced in multiple areas of debt relief,
you might find solutions that could help avoid filing for bankruptcy alltogether.
Alternatives to bankruptcy include the following options:
Attorney assisted debt negotiations could result in a settlement to repay
a reduced amount in full satisfaction of the debt. When debts are successfully
settled, it could obviate the need to file bankruptcy. When feasible,
this can be an attractive alternative to bankruptcy. Our office only offers
assistance with negotiations on debts that are already in default, and
for situations where the borrower has experienced genuine hardship. Furthermore,
for a negotiation to potentially culminate into an actual settlement,
the borrower must have access to a reasonable amount of funds to pay back
a settlement on the debt.
Just because you're being sued, it doesn't mean that you actually
owe the amount being claimed, or that you owe anything to the Plaintiff
bringing the case. You are entitled to fight your case and have your "day
in court". The Plaintiff bears the onus of stating their case sufficiently.
Through the discovery phase of litigation, the Plaintiff can be compelled
to disclose the promissory notes, account statements, application for
credit, payment history, and other applicable information pertinent to
the case. By analyzing the evidence, your defense attorney can look for
weaknesses in the Plaintiff's claim to use for your benefit.
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If your debt is old, or if you don't recognize the banks name or the
balance being claimed, you may be concerned about whether you actually
owe it. There are laws that allow you to dispute the validity of the debt
and to request additional information regarding the account. Of course,
you wouldn't want to file for bankruptcy just to discharge a debt
that may not be valid.
Our office represents consumers with respect to disputing account information
that is not recognized. Upon receiving a demand for validation, a collection
agency is required to cease further collection attempts until the account
is verified. For some borrowers facing collection on false or erronous
debts, this could be a powerful tool to potentially avoid filing for bankruptcy.
It is important to understand that erroneous and outdated information can
sometimes appear on credit reports. Someone looking at their credit report
might be alarmed to see a significant amount of debt, and as a result,
may feel compelled to file bankruptcy. An attorney experienced in analyzing
credit reports can identify whether an account is beyond the applicable
statute of limitations for lawsuits, and can also determine when the item
will be deleted from the credit report due to age. This analysis can give
important insight into the details of the debt, and can help a lawyer
make a determination as to whether bankruptcy may be avoided. Furthermore,
items that are beyond the legal period for credit reporting can be deleted
through a dispute process with the credit bureaus.