January 26, 2024
Whether you’re in a challenging financial place from income changes or high debt that has just become too much to bear...Read More >
When is the best time to start saving for retirement? The answer is simple: as soon as possible. But like most things in life, that is easier said than done. Given the job market, high student loan payments and other personal situations, the last thing young adults want to do is sacrifice a portion of their hard-earned paycheck for a retirement that is not happening for at least 30-40 years.
A recent Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article highlights how putting away even as little as $20 a month can compound and grow into much more by the time retirement rolls around:
As the article explains, saving money takes discipline and financial planning. Our financial expert, Matt Herron strongly believes the only way to acquire wealth is through saving and earning interest, not paying interest. So take advantage of your automatic deduction 401k plans to help save without effort. Additionally, avoid borrowing and taking withdraws from you retirement or 401k. Your 401k is not a checking account. Early withdraws and loans are expensive and will dilute your ability to compound money. If debt is keeping you from making your best effort to save call us to eliminate your debt and develop a plan to start saving your financial future depends on it.
A common question many of us face is whether to co-sign for a loan. Initially, co-signing a loan seems like a nice and supportive gesture. But helping a close family member or friend by co-signing can have major impacts on the future of your financial health.
Before you co-sign on a loan there are a few important things to consider:
Overall co-signing is a long-term commitment to take on someone else’s financial debt. This is where The Debt Doctors can play an important role in helping you to decide if you should co-sign or not. You can schedule a free consultation today and receive the guidance you need to make the best decision for your financial future.
There is a common misconception when it comes to bankruptcy. Over the years, the term has become synonymous with failure and financial ruin. This myth is simply not true. Ironically, we have found that when you are in financial distress, the damage you fear to your credit from bankruptcy has already been done as a result of your late and missed payments. Bankruptcy can provide you with a new financial beginning.
It’s amazing that a whole industry has been created by banks and credit card companies to take advantage of this overstated fear of bankruptcy. Debt consolidation, debt settlement and credit counseling are all essentially the same thing—a last ditch collection effort for people who should be considering bankruptcy.
Since there are so many reasons why bankruptcy is always the better option, we will discuss the key reasons in a two-part blog series.
We are Attorneys, Not Customer Service Representatives
The Debt Doctors at QuatriniRafferty are attorneys. We are required to adhere to a strict professional code of ethics. In addition, we must complete annual, continuing legal education. We also have the fiduciary responsibility to act solely in the best interest of our clients.
At the Debt Doctors we take our job very seriously. It is our professional responsibility to give you valuable advice. Our ultimate goal is to leave you in a better financial place than where we found you.
These standards do not exist with debt consolidation, debt settlement and credit counseling services. In most cases, their objective is to make money off of your debt and sell you a service that fails more often than it succeeds.
Bankruptcy is a Legal Remedy Provided to You Under Federal Law
Bankruptcy protects you from your creditors. As soon as you file for bankruptcy, a federal bankruptcy court issues an order called an automatic stay. This automatic stay prohibits debt collectors from calling you, suing you, taking your property and/or collecting debt by any other means.
Once you complete the bankruptcy process, you receive another court order called a discharge. The discharge order gives you permanent protection against collection of any and all debts which you incurred prior to filing the petition for bankruptcy.
Bankruptcy protection also offers you other powerful tools. These tools include:
The power of the federal bankruptcy court will give you certainty. If you are honest and deal in good faith you will know a definitive timeline of when you will be out of debt, assurance of a resolution to your debts and a favorable court setting to fight your creditors if they violate a court discharge order.
Debt consolidation, debt settlement and credit counseling do not offer you any of these protection tools. In fact, while you are in one of their plans, the creditors can still report negatively to credit reporting agencies, send you collection letters, and file a legal collection action against you that can result in the loss of property.
As you can see, bankruptcy is a powerful financial strategy that has many tools and protections. We will continue to provide the analysis of bankruptcy vs. debt consolidation, debt settlement and credit counseling in Part 2 of this blog series.
To get immediate advice during a free consultation contact the Debt Doctors now. Call 412 395 6001 or email us at [email protected].
The Wall Street Journal reported recently that The White House is looking into ways to help people who are burdened by insurmountable student debt to alleviate some of that stress through new bankruptcy options. Currently, neither federally backed or privately-issued student loans can be discharged in a bankruptcy, but through the Chapter 13 Process you can force an income based payment on your student loan servicer for 5 years.
The plan that the White House is exploring could go a step further than this. However, there are few things you should know about the plans that The Obama Administration is exploring, and points to consider if you have crippling student loans.
While a borrower may have ensured the benefit of their education, student loan servicers don’t differentiate between parents and students when collecting their debt. This measure would help to lessen the burden on parents that have co-signed for private student loans. However, be aware that filing a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy now for student loans can help protect co-signors from collection because the Court can enter an order protecting co-signors if one of the parties files a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy.
Unfortunately, while this bill may add some additional tools to our arsenal for managing student loans this relief may never actually pass the Republican controlled Congress.
Until we find out what is going to happen, there are still options; if you have federal or private student loans from creditors who are being overly aggressive, or if you can’t afford your student loan payments, or even if you just want some options, call us at 1-877-332-8369. We will give you a consultation and you can find out more about how the Debt Doctors can help you manage your student loans and help you prepare “for life after debt”.
This is a good view into how informal and in some case criminal the debt collection process is in America. Most people are afraid of Debt Collectors and their threats. What most people don’t realize is most of their threats have no basis. Additionally, a Debt Collectors worst nightmare is bankruptcy, because it can end the debt collection cycle for good and let you begin rebuilding your credit.
Article Written by Jake Halpern of the NY Times