BOCA RATON, Fla., Aug. 13, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Odds are, you owe money. This year, outstanding consumer debt in the United States exceeded $4 trillion for the first time, according to the Federal Reserve – with Americans collectively owing 26 percent of their incomes to credit card, student, auto and other personal loans.
It's a precarious situation for many Americans. One health issue or job loss and you could literally be stuck paying off your debt for the rest of your life.
Chantel Grant of GM Law Firm, LLC, a national firm specializing in consumer debt issues, knows this scenario well. "We work with clients every day who are deeply in debt – many facing lawsuits, garnishments, bank levies and property liens and all living in fear, not knowing how to negotiate or even communicate with their creditors," Grant said.
If you're in debt, here are five things Grant suggests you consider:
- WHERE TO START? If your debt feels insurmountable, you'll probably benefit from a skilled consumer debt attorney. (Beware non-attorney debt settlement companies, which can entice with advice to stop paying off debts but often are not acting in consumers' best interests and usually won't help you if you're sued by a creditor.)
- WHAT WILL A LAWYER DO? A consumer debt attorney can analyze your situation, offer practical advice and represent you in the event of a lawsuit. They also can leverage consumer protection violations, like the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, in order to dismiss or lower your debt.
- YOUR LEGAL OPTIONS: In general, overwhelming personal debt leads to either a payment, a lawsuit or bankruptcy. A thorough legal analysis from a skilled consumer debt attorney will provide clarity on your best options.
- WHAT HAPPENS IN THE EVENT OF A LAWSUIT? If a creditor sues you to collect a debt, an attorney can defend you in the suit. Likewise, if a creditor violates the law in its efforts to collect from you, an attorney can advise on next steps.
- TAX CONSEQUENCES: Be aware that most canceled debt is taxable according to the IRS, so whatever is owed can increase your tax liability. Your attorney can give you clarity on the tax implications of any debt resolution.
For more information on these and other questions you may have about resolving your debt, visit GM Law Firm at www.gmlawfirmllc.com. GM Law Firm is based in Boca Raton, Florida, at 1515 S. Federal Highway, Suite 105.
For Immediate Release
Contact: Jennifer Goddard Combs
SOURCE GM Law Firm