Debt relief companies targeting those with student loans
Debtors need to inform themselves about all of their options before working with companies promising to eliminate their financial problems.
During the most recent recession, many people went back to school in an effort to advance their careers in a new field. They believed that the pursuit of higher education would give them an advantage over other applicants. Some of these individuals took out loans to pay for their schooling, thinking that they would have a job waiting for them once they obtained their degrees.
Not everyone found work in their chosen field. After graduating, the loans started to become due. Those who were unemployed or underemployed had serious problems meeting their repayment obligations. Since student loans are generally not dischargeable in bankruptcy, some debtors feel as though there are very limited opportunities to eliminate these debts.
Many debt relief companies have begun targeting those who have student loans. Often, these companies purchase ads on the Internet. When people do searches looking for programs to assist them with their debt problems, the majority of the search results go to these debt relief websites. These companies make elaborate promises about their ability to eliminate or reduce debt, and charge debtors significant fees in exchange for their services.
In many cases, these companies do not deliver results to debtors, and the individuals end up in much more severe financial trouble. To make matters worse, many of the programs that these companies use to try to reduce debt are available for free to debtors. They simply do not realize that the companies are charging them these excessive fees for free services until it is too late.
The debt relief companies have drawn increased scrutiny from the federal government. In Illinois, several of these companies have been sued by the state's Attorney General for their predatory practices, but this has not brought an end to the issue. When one company shuts down, there are seemingly two more to take its place. Debtors still find themselves struggling to regain control over their situation.
What you should do if struggling with financial concerns due to student loan debt
If you find yourself having problems making ends meet due to student loan payments, there are options available to you. Speak to an experienced bankruptcy attorney to learn more about what can be done in your specific situation.
It is important that you have these conversations as soon as possible, as any delay will only make your problems worse. The longer you wait, the more difficult it can be to deal with these issues. Your attorney can help you find the right choices that will allow you to experience a more positive financial future.
At Illini Legal Services, we offer a free, no-obligation consultation to each of our clients. During your consultation, we will take the time to listen to your financial concerns and assess your case and individual situation. We have five locations to serve you. Contact us today for help!
Illini Legal Services is engaged in the private practice of law and is not a public legal aid agency. We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.