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Colorado residents: Beware of certain debt relief companies

Sometimes, when Colorado residents find themselves facing serious problems, all they need is a little assistance. This is certainly true for those deep in debt, who can use some help from others to be able to obtain debt relief.

Yet, those looking to eliminate debt should be careful of the offers for help they receive. Different types of companies exist that promise to help reduce or eliminate a person's debt, but many of these options carry other risks that can leave the person even worse off.

For instance, debt relief companies ask individuals to deposit money in order to use that money to pay down debt through settlements reached with creditors. But many of these companies are not reputable, as shown by warnings listed on the Federal Trade Commission website. Other companies might misrepresent what they can and cannot do, or charge high fees that leave the person paying more in the end than they otherwise would have.

Similarly, while debt consolidation may be an option for some individuals, the simplified monthly payments may come with an added cost. The consolidation is, after all, another loan that has consequences if the person is unable to repay it.

Accordingly, when individuals are looking at their debt relief options, one of their considerations should be filing for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy allows those with unmanageable debt to obtain a full discharge of their eligible debt. The process is a safe way to legally discharge debt, with a court overseeing the process and signing off on the debt discharge. To get the process started, individuals should meet with a bankruptcy attorney to determine if bankruptcy is right for them.

Source: Record Net, "Debt-relief firms have dubious record," Anya Kamenetz, Feb. 2, 2014

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