Debt Settlement - How Nicole, a School Teacher With $55k in Credit Card Debt, Avoided Bankruptcy

Dec 21


Jesse Niesen

Jesse Niesen

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Why are so many people turning to debt settlement these days?According to a National Debt Relief Survey I conducted in 2006 with over 10,000 people wh...


Why are so many people turning to debt settlement these days?

According to a National Debt Relief Survey I conducted in 2006 with over 10,000 people who had requested help with their credit card debt online after searching Google,Debt Settlement - How Nicole, a School Teacher With $55k in Credit Card Debt, Avoided Bankruptcy Articles most people carrying significant debt said they were interested in debt settlement because they could finally get out of debt as fast as possible (and stay out), live debt free, save more money, invest for retirement, go on a nice "paid-in-cash" vacation, afford a college education for their children and many other reasons unique to their own situations...

What are your reasons?

Why is it important for you to be debt free?

Is "debt settlement" right for you?

Maybe, maybe not. 

Let's take a closer look to discover if debt settlement is the best option for you...

I'm about to tell you a short story to illuminate how debt settlement can be the best choice for certain people. It's important to discover for yourself if debt settlement is right for you, BEFORE you talk to a pushy sales person trying to enroll everyone and their mother, including you, into debt settlement programs these days. 

This story will help you see clearly if debt settlement can truly "save your day", as well as avoid the common mistakes most people make.


Nicole was a wife and mother of a 20-month-old baby girl, living in Virginia, making $27,000 a year as a school teacher and renting her home.

Nicole had financial problems; carrying over $53,000.00 in high interest credit card debt.  Her husband Steve had lost his job.  The couple charged up the credit cards to survive on Nicole's small salary alone while Steve looked for work.  Before Steve began working again, they fell behind on the credit card payments. 

All the debt was in Nicole's name.

Of course, the credit card companies were quick to jack up Nicole's interest rates to 20-30%, with most accounts at 29.99% interest (pure insanity).  This also caused the monthly payments to jump up to an amount the couple could no longer afford, even when Steve began working again.

What did Nicole do?

Fortunately, she AVOIDED bankruptcy, and got on the affordable fast-track to freedom from serious amounts of overwhelming debt.

I'll share the details of "how" she did it below, but first let's look at a bit of interesting history...

You see, Nicole had previously enrolled in a Credit Counseling program, making monthly payments of $1,425.00, which she couldn't afford.

The credit counselor who enrolled her after going through her budget actually said to Nicole, with a straight face, "Can you live on negative-$80 a month?"

What a joke!

But it wasn't funny...

Nicole dropped out of the program 2 months later, deeper in debt with even further damage to her credit.

Since dropping out of Credit Counseling (very common), Nicole had been saving up her money to pay an attorney $1,800 to file Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, because she did not qualify for a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy under the new "creditor friendly" Bankruptcy Reform Act passed in October of 2005.

Can you imagine?

Remember, she only made $27k a year as a school teacher, rented her home and had fallen behind on $53k of high interest credit card debt due to her husband's job loss... but she still didn't qualify for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy (where the debt is wiped out), only for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy (where she must repay a portion of the debt).

Wait until you see the "portion" of the debt she would have had to pay back if she had filed bankruptcy, but first you've gotta hear this...

Nicole was scheduled to meet with her bankruptcy attorney on a Thursday evening, but by chance she happened to see a certain "debt guru" on a TV Talk Show earlier that same day discussing options for getting out of debt, including debt settlement.  On a whim, she called for a free debt relief guide.

After learning how credit works and about all of her options to get out of debt, Nicole canceled her appointment with the attorney to file bankruptcy and instead she faxed in all of her current credit card statements and budgeting worksheet to see if she qualified for a debt settlement program.

Guess what happened?

Nicole found a better way!

I'll show you the details in a moment, but first let's look at what she avoided...

Nicole nearly filed Chapter 13 Bankruptcy (public record). She would have paid $800-$1,000 A MONTH for 60 months, on top of $1,800 in fees for filing bankruptcy. That's a total cost of nearly $50k-$62k to eliminate her $53k of credit card debt on a 5 YEAR, court-ordered repayment plan. (As quoted by her bankruptcy attorney)


Plus, the crippling affect of a bankruptcy would have remained on her credit report for another 7 years AFTER the date of her discharge... for a total of 12 years of major credit damage.


Instead, Nicole learned how she could eliminate her $53,000.00 of credit card debt for a total cost of about $34,280 in just 36 months with payments she could afford of only $995 a month.

You may want to READ that AGAIN!

Nicole discovered she could avoid the shame and long-term damage of bankruptcy, save more money for her and her family than any other option available (including bankruptcy or credit counseling) and debt free in just 36 months (no longer be a slave to credit card debt).

She no longer had to throw thousands of dollars a year down the toilet on interest charges.

Nicole eliminated the extreme stress she had been feeling when she didn't know what to do or how she would ever afford to get out from under an overwhelming amount of debt and out-of-control monthly minimum payments she simply couldn't afford. 

Best of all, "Seeing the light at the end of the tunnel" and waking up every day feeling relief from heavy debt stress helped Nicole and Steve have a better marriage, be better parents to their young daughter and focus on their income and budgeting to get out of debt ASAP, saving as much money as possible in the process.

These results are nothing special and are typical of what can be done through debt settlement.  In fact, many debt settlement clients are debt free even faster, averaging just 28 months.  People with lump sums and high debt amounts usually experience the best results.

If you're in financial hardship like Nicole was, then take a look at ALL of your options to get out of debt, including debt settlement, but BEWARE of anyone offering only one solution:  Just like the bankruptcy attorney Nicole spoke with, or the credit counselor who enrolled her in a program she couldn't afford, also watch out for anyone offering only debt settlement. 

Work with a professional who offers all options to get your out of debt, who will look out for your best interests instead of trying to sell you their solution.