If you are struggling with overwhelming debt, you may be confused about which debt relief options are available to you. If so, speaking with an attorney experienced in matters of debt relief may be a good idea. While it is possible that the best option for your particular situation is to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy or some other form of personal or business bankruptcy, it is also possible that the best option for your situation is far less intensive.

For example, if you only have a few outstanding debts and you have a reliable income, you may simply need to negotiate more reasonable payment plans with your creditors. If your debts are complex or creditors are harassing you, it may be best if your attorney negotiates on your behalf. Otherwise, you may be able to do the legwork yourself.

It is generally only a good idea to negotiate with your creditors if you have the means to begin paying back your debt in the near future. Oftentimes, creditors are willing to restructure debt payback with those consumers who are both willing and able to address their outstanding debts.

Before you sit down to negotiate, review what your outstanding debts specifically consist of and determine what you can afford to pay reliably. That way, if a creditor insists that you must pay a much higher amount than you can afford, you can politely thank the creditor, set up another time to touch base with your creditor about the debt and then discuss other debt relief options with your attorney.

Source: Credit.com, “3 Things You Need When Negotiating With a Debt Collector,” Michael Bovee, June 3, 2014