Monday, January 9, 2012

Settling An Account For Less

A client of Matthew C. Mullhofer Attorney came into his office the other day with a question in regards to settling a bill that he stopped making payments months ago. He wanted to settle the account for less than what he owed and wanted to know the best way to handle this, and if there would be any way to prevent this from affecting his credit report negatively.

Matthew C. Mullhofer advised him that whenever a person wants to try and settle an account for less than the amount owed, it is important to have the cash ready when you make the offer. Do not call the creditor and ask them what they will take. If a person is not ready to act, don’t waste time.

When making the offer, it should be done at the end of the month since this is the time most creditors and collection agencies are trying to close their books for the month. Mr. Mullhofer advised to have the cash ready and tell the creditor you can have the money them within 48 hours if they agree.

The most important part that Matthew C. Mullhofer Attorney advised his client, is to get a letter from the creditor where they state the amount they have agreed to accept as payment in full with no additional charges once they have received your payment. This letter should be signed, dated, and in your possession before you pay anything. If they refuse to give you this letter, don’t pay. Without this letter the creditors can later down the road state they never agreed to settle for a lesser amount.

When making payment, make sure to send it by certified mail or a means by which you can track the payment and make sure it arrived to its appropriate location. Always make copies of your payment to them and keep it for your records for at least 5 years.

Matthew C. Mullhofer Attorney advised his client to request they remove the entry from his credit report or at least report it as “paid” as part of the negotiation. Request that the entry state “paid” and not “settled for less”.

Please feel free to contact Matthew Mullhofer Attorney at (877) 246-2770, to discuss debt settlement or bankruptcy.

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