Hello, Dan here

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      Dan,

      It is hard to come back after finaciall difficulties. After

      getting all the accounts settled you might want to take a break

      for about a year and then start the long climb uphill to

      resestablish credit. The sooner you do this the better it will

      be for you in the long run. Leins and judgements stay on the

      credit report for 10 years (as I understand it) even though they

      are paid off. Defaulted student loans also will haunt you the

      rest of your days. Can’t get them off. If you are paying an

      attorney expect him to give you at least a bi-weekly update even

      if he just calls and says I’m waiting for returned calles but in

      truth you’ll get just as far as he will.

      The only reason to have an attorney to handle this is to keep

      you from doing the work. But believe me most times you can get

      further than the attorney. It is hard to tell the customer (even

      one that owes them money) that they won’t settle it. Collections

      cost money to the company. It’s better to get something than to

      get nothing.

      Now the important part is to learn something from all this. It’s

      hard to get out of debt so if it is not life essential don’t use

      credit to buy. We bought our son a car at an auction (I have

      bought 1 new car in my 42 years of life and won’t do that

      again). I pay cash for 95 percent of my purchases. The only time

      I use a credit card is on the internet (when I order a part or

      some specialty item) then a check goes out the next day. Or

      college tuition which get’s paid back before the next symester.

      (the school charges more for financing than American Express) I

      am assuming that the majority of your creditor that you are in

      default with are credit card companies. They are the easiest to

      work with. They will have a special department for you to speak

      with all you have to do is call the number on the card and ask

      to speak with the default department.

      If it is student loans it could be even worse (they will

      attached all your property and they will seize the property.

      They can force you into bankrupcy which their debt will not be

      removed. You can’t get out of that one. But you could set up a

      new schedule of payment that better fits your current budge.

      If it is places like phone companies, cable companies ect you

      will just have to dwindle down the amounts. Cell phone companies

      will usually settle for half of the bill plus a cancellation fee

      but it will depend on how you paid before.

      Make a list of all the creditors you need to contact. Get phone

      numbers and account numbers and start making the phone calls. It

      will be uncomfortable but it can be done. If you find resistance

      that is when I would involve a credit counciling service or an

      attorney.

      Take care

      Good Luck

      Donna

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