Debt Problems: What Help Can I Get with My Debt?

Debt Problems: What Help Can I Get with My Debt
 If you are in debt, you have many ways you can get through it. With help, you can get out of the situation and with patience and time, things can get much better.


Tip: Don’t pay anyone anything until you get more information and paperwork to go over and confirm that you really owe money.

If they are harassing, rushing, threatening or abusing you, you can file a complaint against them right away.


Option 1

You can ask if they can lower your interest rate or any extra fees you have to pay. This way, you are not paying too many extra charges on the top of what you already owe the company. It helps to be honest when you call about your situation and ask. They may be able to lower it for you. If you are in the military, check with your local Armed Forces Legal Assistance office. You may qualify for a lower interest rate right away.


Option 2

You can work out an easier plan for you to pay back the money. You can work this out directly with the company you owe money to or with a debt collector or debt collecting agency. It helps to be honest when you call and explain that you want to pay, but are not be able to pay as much as they would like right now and you would like a better plan. They may be able to work out a way for you to pay only what you can afford to pay each month.


Option 3

You can pay for all your debts through (1) service or agency (called debt consolidation). This way, if you owe a lot of different companies, you don’t have to pay each one separately. You can just pay (1) collector or agency just (1) payment each month  which will cover all of your debts. You may also be able to get help lowering your payments. This can make it all less stressful and so much easier to deal with. Just be sure to check that all of the companies you owe are getting your payments. 


Option 4

You can work out a deal or settlement and agree to pay less than what you really owe. There are companies and agencies that off this option but be careful. They usually have a lot of requirements in order for you to do it and you can even get scammed. You can avoid getting scammed by speaking with a credit counselor or financial advisor near you for advice. If you live in New York City, you can get financial counseling here.

Option 5

You can pay the lowest amount you need to pay each month (called the minimum payment). By doing this, you won’t have to pay so much each month. As long as you pay the lowest amount you need to pay each month, you won’t have to worry about ruining your credit score. The bad part about doing this is that you will end up paying more than you what owed at first by the time you’re through paying off your debt. This is because they will charge you a lot of extra fees (from interest charges).


Option 6

You can borrow money to pay off all of your debt right now and pay back your lender later. Some people find this helpful because it gives you more time to get and save money for you to pay back your debt, without having so much pressure on you right now. The person or company who lent you the money may or may not charge you extra for borrowing from them. It’s a good idea to know when they will want you to pay it back and if they will charge you extra fees.


Option 7

Have no money to pay your debt? You can file for bankruptcy. You’ll need a lawyer or legal aid. You may or may not lose your property (like your house or car). It depends. If approved by a judge, your debt will be forgiven and cleared. Your credit score will go down and you’ll need to build it back up slowly, but you will be able to start new with no debt. If you have problems with your bankruptcy, you can report it right away.



More Help…

✧ Guides: Dealing with Debt, Coping with Debt, Settling Credit Card Debt and Debt Relief or Bankruptcy

Support groups: Free and low-cost credit counseling services (national), Get Free Financial Counseling (New York City), Suicide Prevention Lifeline and I’m Alive (safe online chat)


Talk to your doctor or health care provider for more information.

If you don’t have a doctor or insurance, you can get help at a health center near you.


cell phone

Call (800) – 273 – TALK (8255) for 24/7 caring support and emergency help with difficult feelings or emotions.

Call 2-1-1 for 24/7 help finding programs, services and all kinds of help near you.



Dealing with Debt. United States government web site. Accessed June 2, 2017.

Page last reviewed: June 2, 2017
Page last updated: June 2, 2017

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