Consumers Should Respond Carefully to Credit-Card-Debt Suits

All too often, the U.S. economic downturn has had devastating impact on individual households. In particular, in the face of job loss or other financial crisis, many people have had to turn to their credit cards to just get by.
And suddenly they can be even as much as tens of thousands of dollars in debt at astronomical interest rates, often behind in payments with huge late fees literally compounding the problem.
Credit-card companies are increasingly suing delinquent debtors in court in attempts to collect these debts, but reportedly the plaintiff creditors are not always crossing their t’s and dotting their i’s. Instead, evidence is emerging of a pattern of shoddy, inadequate or inaccurate paperwork being submitted as evidence in support of the lawsuits, as well as lax compliance with court and other legal procedures.
So credit-card debtors should not automatically roll over if they are sued, assuming that because the financial companies are big, that the companies are doing everything required in the legal proceedings.
Federal authorities are investigating these alleged practices, but in the meantime, it is in a defendant’s best interest to talk to an experienced consumer law attorney about the matter right away to protect him or herself legally and financially.
According to The New York Times, one New York judge estimated that about 90 percent of credit-card suits are “flawed.” Specifically, debtors need to be sure that the claimed amounts due, including interest and fees added, are accurate and correct, among other things. Sometimes an account holder might be sued even after having paid off the debt already.
The New York Times reports further that about 95 percent of these cases result in default judgments against the debtors after they do not show up to defend themselves.

Indiana residents: Think long and hard about debt relief solutions

Many Indiana residents are struggling with debts and trying to figure out how to not lose things like their cars and homes to repossession or foreclosure. This had led many to make bad financial decisions that end up doing more harm than good.
For example, many Indiana residents have no doubt heard of zero-balance credit card transfer offers. These zero-balance cards typically allow a person to transfer over a debt and not have to pay any interest on that debt for, in some cases, up to 18 months.
Some hear of a deal like this and decide to pay off their car with their zero-balance credit card. The idea being that as long as the car is paid off before the introductory zero interest rate periods is up, they will actually be saving money on interest charges.
The issue though is that while this may sound like a good idea in theory, in practice there are a number of red flags. The first being that if the car is not 100 percent paid off by the time the introductory zero interest periods is over, the interest charges will actually cost more than if the balance was never transferred.
On the flip side of this, if a person has enough money to be able to pay off the car on the credit card before the introductory rate is up, this person is most likely able to just write a check to pay off the car and never have to deal with transferring the balance and trading installment debt to revolving debt. Besides, changing debt from installment to revolving tends to negatively affect a person’s credit score.
In the end, the take home message is that while there are a lot of great theories floating around on how to take care of financial situations, it is important to talk with an experienced debt relief attorney before making any rash decisions.

Baby boomers struggling with credit card debt too

In our last post we focused on the fact that younger Americans are really starting to rack up credit card debt. And while this is certainly true, Demos, a policy research organization, found that Americans over the age of 50 are also really financially struggling with credit card debt.
One 62-year-old woman recently shared her story. After helping her daughters with college, some unexpected medical bills and getting a divorce herself, and also deciding to go back to school, she finds herself paying hundreds of dollars per month in credit card debt. However, these payments are mainly going to interest and she isn’t really seeing the overall balance of what she owes going down.
The study conducted by Demos shows she is not alone. Of those over the age of 50 who are considered low-to-middle class, those with credit card debt owed an average of $8,278. When looking at where this debt is coming from, half rely on credit cards for medical expenses and half use their cards for every day expenses, like groceries and utility bills.
In terms of paying down this debt, many have found it even harder in recent years. Due to the recession, after being laid off, many hard workers were not able to find jobs.
Fortunately, just like anyone else who is struggling with credit card there, there are often debt relief options that are available. These options can result in peace of mind, especially for those who are getting closer and closer to the retirement age.

Young Americans really racking up the credit card debt

Many Indiana residents know how credit card debt is. Either accrued over time due to poor budgeting, or relying on a credit card for necessary purchases, having credit card debt can be frustrating and frightening as many borrowers simply do not have the finances to pay back all that is owed.
Having credit card debt is certainly not limited to a specific demographic either. Rather, men and women and people of all ages are finding themselves in baffling financial situations.
According to one recent study, credit card debt among the younger generation seems to only be increasing. In fact, according to the university study, those born between the years 1980 and 1984 have, on average, $5,689 more in credit card debt than their parents did. Compared to their grandparents, younger Americans today have on average $8,156 more in credit card debt.
When looking at what is happening to rack up this debt, there are several factors all playing a role.
One is temptation. Many college students are inundated with credit card offers. For some, the temptation becomes too great. They cave-in and sign up for a credit card. A purchase here and a purchase there suddenly starts to add up, and before even realizing what is happening, these students end up racking up several thousands of dollars worth of debt.
Of course, with the current economy, one also has to wonder if recently graduated college students are finding themselves in the tough position of not being able to find a job after graduation. In those cases, there is no doubt that many start to rely on their credit card. This reliance can rapidly spiral out of control too.
When it comes to accrued debt, regardless of a person’s age, those with credit card debt should know that there are often debt relief solutions available. An attorney with experience handling debt relief can walk a person through those options.