Indiana Bankruptcy Lawyer Has His Doubts About Debt Settlement Agencies

December 13, 2011 11:26 pm Published by

“When someone promises to ‘eliminate your debt’ I can only guess that they are one ofdoubt three things: a bankruptcy attorney, a sugar daddy, or someone who is convinced they have magical powers,” says financial planner Ken Clark, author of The Complete idiot’s Guide to Getting Out of Debt.

I couldn’t agree more. My 25 years’ experience as a debt consolidation lawyer offering bankruptcy services in Indiana have made me extremely leery of debt settlement agencies in general.

Last week alone, at least four couples and individuals came into to the Zuckerberg bankruptcy law offices to seek help filing personal bankruptcy in Indiana.  After months of working with a debt settlement agency, the very sad fact is that every one of these people was unsuccessful in staving off bankruptcy.  By waiting, each had spent a lot of money in debt settlement fees, all with the goal of avoiding bankruptcy.  That money is gone, along with some of their options, and the result is that the only viable path for them to regain their financial independence is – and always was – seeking relief under the new bankruptcy laws of Indiana!

“Although some organizations offer valuable assistance, they’re also allied with creditors and have an institutional bias against bankruptcy, even when it’s in your best interest,” claim James P. and John M. Caher, authors of Personal Bankruptcy Laws for Dummies, adding that "Although credit counselors may appear to be independent, many are on creditors’ payrolls, so their interests are at odds with yours. Debt consolidators, offering to replace your many monthly bills with a single “low-interest, easy payment loan,” make you believe you can get out of debt by borrowing more money.

It’s so ironic, all of us good lawyers for bankruptcy in Indiana who work in the Zuckerberg bankruptcy law offices agree, that just when someone is in the worst possible frame of mind to make an informed decision among all the different kinds of financial help being offered, is precisely when they’re forced to make that very decision!  What results, as my Columbus bankruptcy lawyer colleague wryly remarks, is that people arrive at our office with creditors literally breathing down their necks!   You know how there are shelters for battered women? Well, sometimes  our office has the feel of a shelter for battered debtors!

Can debt really be “settled”, consolidated, reduced, and “eliminated” the way some of these ads are promising? I’d like to remind Bankruptcy in Indiana readers of one important fact:

ONLY lawyers can offer legal advice, and ONLY legal advice can help debtors deal with wage garnishment, help stop foreclosure, and defend judgments.


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This post was written by Mark Zuckerberg

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