Hello, Dan here

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      Dear Group:

      I’m Dan. I was hoping some of you might have some suggestions on how

      I can best deal with my debt. I am very confused, and am scared.

      I had $50k in credit card debt before becoming disabled a few years

      ago, drastically effecting my income. Long story short: My

      creditors, 9 of them, were not interested in helping make it easier

      for me to pay down the debt on terms I could afford, and today, that

      $50k is now over $91k with penalties, vicious interest rates, and

      attorney fees.

      A year ago, to avoid a nervous breakdown, I hired an attorney to

      handle this for me as I was really on the verge of losing my mind. He

      very quickly settled one $9k debt for $3500 (about 38% of the

      escalated debt, and closer to what I originally owed). Since then,

      we’ve had some contact, but I’ve come to realize that he has done

      nothing more than settling that one debt, and judgments and missed

      deadlines have been rolling in.

      In a panic, I had a consult with a bankruptcy attorney today, ready to

      file for bankruptcy just to have this misery over, but he advised I

      would not qualify due to a little more equity in my home than I am

      allowed. He agreed to take my case but advised that I could likely

      settle my debts directly with my creditors and achieve the same

      results that he or another attorney would. And so I guess this is

      what I’m going to try to do.

      Does anyone have any advice on how to deal with these creditors or

      their collection people. I am on permanent Social Security

      Disability; my income is and has been less than my expenses, and I do

      not intend to sell my home any time in the near future as I will

      likely not qualify for another mortgage given the circumstances and my

      now-poor credit. My only “cash” asset is a retirement account with

      around $10k in it. However, I do have a sister who is willing to lend

      me some cash if I can settle with these creditors, and 30-35% of the

      $91k is about what this loan will cover. Is it reasonable to expect

      any of them to settle for that?

      I also am considering using a debt consolidation service, despite that

      I have not heard positive things in general about them. The reason I

      am considering this is because I would rather take the loan from my

      sister and put it toward getting my ailing house into good repair, and

      use whatever is left over to invest and pay down the debt with the

      income it would produce.

      Thank for listening, and much Gratitude in advance for your help,

      Dan

      PS: One more question: My original attorney had told me that the

      creditors who have liens on my home will not be willing to make

      settlements, but the attorney today told me this is not true. Does

      anyone have experience with this? Thanks again..Dan.

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