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the Upsolve Team

the Upsolve Team

Upsolve is fortunate to have a remarkable team of bankruptcy attorneys, as well as finance and consumer rights professionals, as contributing writers to help us keep our content up to date, informative, and helpful to everyone.


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Articles written by the Upsolve Team

How To Win Against Wakefield AND Associates

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 28, 2024

If Wakefield and Associates contacts you to collect a debt, make sure they’ve validated the debt before you decide what to do next. If they can prove the debt is valid but you disagree with the amount, you can dispute it. If you agree you owe that amount but can’t pay in full, try to negotiate a settlement to pay less. If Wakefield and Associates sues you, you must respond to their lawsuit even if you’re still negotiating the debt to avoid negative consequences.

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How To Win Against 11 Charter Communications

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 28, 2024

11 Charter Communications is in charge of debt collection for Charter Communications Inc, better known as Spectrum. After confirming that you have an unpaid debt with Spectrum, you can negotiate a debt settlement with 11 Charter Communications to clear the debt. If 11 Charter Communications files a debt collection lawsuit against you, you can respond on your own by filing an answer form.

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How To Deal With Northstar Location Services

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 28, 2024

Northstar Location Services LLC (a part of The Northstar Companies) is a legitimate debt collection agency that collects consumer debts. If Northstar contacts you, you need to validate the debt to ensure it is legitimate. After you confirm the debt is real and yours, you have a couple of options for moving forward with Northstar. You can dispute the debt (especially if you find inaccuracies or disagree with the specified amount), or you can negotiate to settle the debt. If you negotiate to settle the debt, you pay a portion of the total amount owed.

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How To Deal With Revco Solutions

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 23, 2024

Revco Solutions is a consumer debt collector and primarily collects past-due medical bills for its clients. In some cases, they also collect other types of consumer debt. If Revco Solutions contacts you, ask them to validate the debt before you do anything else. If they prove the debt is valid, you can decide how to proceed. You can dispute the debt, pay it in full, or negotiate the amount down.

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How To Win Against Central Portfolio Control

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 22, 2024

If Central Portfolio Control contacts you, they probably bought a debt they believe you owe. Before paying anything, you need to validate the debt to confirm that it’s legitimate. If it is, figure out how much you can pay and begin debt settlement negotiations. If Central Portfolio Control is suing you for unpaid debt, you need to respond — even if you’re in the middle of settling the debt — and follow court procedures.

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How To Win Against FBCS

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 22, 2024

FBCS is a third-party debt collector, so if they contact you, they’re probably trying to collect on a debt account. Before you pay anything, have FBCS validate the debt and confirm its details. Then you can decide what to do next. If you disagree with any aspect of the debt, you can file a dispute. If you agree you owe the debt and want to pay it, you can pay it in full or try to settle the debt for less than the full amount. If FBCS sues you, you’ll need to respond to the lawsuit.

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How To Win Against Radius Global Solutions

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 22, 2024

Radius Global Solutions LLC is a debt collection agency. If they’re contacting you, they probably bought one of your accounts from a creditor and are now attempting to collect the debt. Before you pay, make sure the debt is legitimate. If it is, try to negotiate a debt settlement to pay less than you owe and get the account settled. If you ignore Radius Global Solutions and their collection efforts, they may file a lawsuit against you. If they sue you, respond right away.

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How To Deal With Aldous & Associates

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 16, 2024

Aldous & Associates PLLC is a legitimate law firm and debt collection agency that focuses on consumer debts in the health and fitness industry as well as telecommunications and property management. If Aldous & Associates contacts you, you’ll first want to validate the debt. Once you’ve confirmed that the debt is yours, you’re in control of how you want to move forward with Aldous & Associates. Rest assured, you have options. You can dispute (challenge) the debt if there are any mistakes or you don’t agree with the amount, or you can negotiate to settle the debt by paying only a portion of the total debt owed. You get to decide which approach works best for you and your financial situation.

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How To Deal With United Collection Bureau Inc.

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 16, 2024

United Collection Bureau Inc. (UCB) is a legitimate debt collection agency that focuses on consumer debts. If UCB contacts you, the first thing you need to do is validate the alleged debt. After confirming the debt is yours, you can decide how to address the situation with UCB. You can dispute the debt if there are inaccuracies or if you disagree with the debt amount, or you can negotiate the down amount down by offering a debt settlement.

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How To Deal With RMP Services

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 16, 2024

Receivables Management Partners LLC (RMP Services) is a legitimate debt collection agency focusing on medical debt. If RMP Services contacts you, the first thing you’ll want to do is validate the debt. Once you verify that the debt belongs to you, you can choose how to deal with the collection agency. The main options you have are disputing the debt (if the information is incorrect or you disagree with the debt amount) or negotiating to pay a lower amount.

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How Can I Get Free Legal Aid Help To File Bankruptcy?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated February 10, 2024

Legal advice can be very helpful as you navigate the bankruptcy process, but not everyone can afford to hire an attorney to help them. That's where legal aid comes in. Legal aid organizations offer free or low-cost legal help to certain individuals. Eligibility is often based on income, but sometimes age, veteran status, or other factors come into play as well. This article will describe what legal aid is, how to find out if you qualify, and what it's like to work with a legal aid organization.

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Legal Aid partnering with Upsolve

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 10, 2024

Screen individual who calls for the following ten criteria. If they pass, let them know they can go to Upsolve.org to produce their paperwork and file their forms. If you have attorney resources, you can let the individual know that after they’re done preparing their forms with Upsolve, they can come back to you to get the forms reviewed.

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The Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated February 9, 2024

In Florida, you have even more protections from unfair collection practices than you would in other states. The Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA) works with the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act to help limit phone calls, threatening letters, and other types of unfair actions from collection agencies and other types of debt collectors. It protects Florida consumers and gives them the right to sue debt collectors that have violated the FCCPA. Keep reading to learn more about the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act and your rights under federal and state consumer protection laws.

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How To Deal With Pressler, Felt & Warshaw LLP

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 9, 2024

Pressler, Felt & Warshaw LLP is a debt collection law firm that represents creditors, debt collectors, and debt buyers. Pressler mostly collects consumer debts, like past-due credit card debt. They may initially contact you to collect a debt or to notify you that they filed a lawsuit against you. If Pressler, Felt & Warshaw reaches out to you, the first thing you should do is validate the debt. This guide explains how to do this and discusses your other options, such as disputing the debt or negotiating a debt settlement.

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How To Deal With MBA Law

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 9, 2024

MBA Law is a debt collection business that focuses on collecting medical debt. They usually start the process by mailing letters or notices to individuals with unpaid medical bills. If you receive a letter from MBA Law, validate the debt before you do anything else. If the debt is valid, you can then decide to pay it, contest it, negotiate a debt settlement, or ignore it (not recommended). Read on to learn more about these options and what they mean for your finances.

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How To Deal With Midland Funding LLC

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 8, 2024

Midland Funding LLC is a legitimate debt collection agency that focuses on consumer debts under their parent company, Encore Capital Group — a major debt buyer. If Midland contacts you, you should first validate the alleged debt. Once you verify that the debt belongs to you, you can choose how to deal with Midland. Your main options are disputing the debt (if the information is incorrect or you disagree with the debt amount), or negotiating a settlement so you end up paying a portion of the debt.

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How To Deal With Wakefield & Associates

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 8, 2024

Wakefield & Associates is a prolific debt collector in the United States that specializes in collecting medical debts. If Wakefield & Associates contacts you, the first thing you should do is validate the debt. This article explains the validation process and discusses your available options, like filing a dispute, negotiating a debt settlement, or ignoring the debt (which isn’t recommended).

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How To Deal With Cavalry SPV I LLC

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 8, 2024

Cavalry SPV I LLC (Cavalry Portfolio Services LLC) is a legitimate debt collection agency focusing on consumer debts, like credit card debt. If Cavalry SPV I LLC is contacting you, the first thing you’ll want to do is validate the debt. Once you verify that the debt belongs to you, you can choose how to deal with Cavalry. The main options you have are disputing the debt (if the information is incorrect or you disagree with the debt amount) or negotiating a settlement to pay less than you owe and resolve the matter.

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How To Deal With Harris & Harris

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 8, 2024

Harris & Harris is a legitimate debt collection agency focusing on consumer debts — specifically healthcare, government, and utility debt. If Harris & Harris contacts you, you should first validate the alleged debt. Once you verify that the debt belongs to you, you can choose how to move forward. The main options are to dispute the debt (if the information is incorrect or you disagree with the debt amount) or to negotiate a settlement so you end up paying a portion of the debt.

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How To Deal With Radius Global Solutions

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 8, 2024

Radius Global Solutions LLC is a legitimate debt collection agency that focuses on consumer debts. If Radius Global Solutions contacts you, validate the debt before you do anything else. Once you verify that the debt is yours, you can choose how to proceed. The main options you have are disputing the debt (if the information is incorrect or you disagree with the debt amount) or negotiating a settlement.

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How To Deal With CCS Offices

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 8, 2024

CCS Offices is a debt collector that focuses on consumer debts, including unpaid healthcare invoices and credit card bills. If CCS Offices contacts you, don’t panic. Given how the debt collection business works, there could be a mistake or error. The first thing you should do is have CCS Offices validate the debt. If they do, you can decide to dispute the debt, negotiate a debt settlement, or do nothing. Read on to learn more about these options and what they mean for you.

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Understanding a Bank Levy and What You Can Do if Your Account Is Frozen

Written by Attorney William A. McCarthyLegally reviewed by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 2, 2024

If a creditor or debt collector sues you for an unpaid debt and they win, they may be able to get a court order for a bank levy. This allows them to take funds you owe directly from your bank account. Most creditors will have to jump through some legal hoops to do this, but some government agencies can levy your bank account without first getting a court order.

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How To Deal With DCM Services

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated January 26, 2024

DCM Services is a third-party debt collection agency that focuses on estate debt. They go after unpaid bills of people who have died by contacting their relatives. If DCM Services is contacting you, refrain from giving them any information until they validate the debt. Initially, they may be reaching out to identify the personal representative of the estate. Since DCM Services purchases debts from original creditors and lenders, they often have incorrect or incomplete information. If you think you rightfully owe DCM Services and are unable to pay, you should consider hiring a lawyer. This form of debt collection, especially with medical bills of the deceased, is a legally gray area, so it’s advisable to get professional help.

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What Is Debt Consolidation?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated January 24, 2024

Debt consolidation is when you combine multiple debts into one. The goal of consolidating your debt is to reduce your monthly payment and get a lower interest rate. It also simplifies your debt repayment, so you're less likely to miss payments each month. Debt consolidation loans and credit card balance transfers are two common types of debt consolidation.

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What Is Debt Consolidation?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated January 24, 2024

Debt consolidation is when you combine multiple debts into one. The goal of consolidating your debt is to reduce your monthly payment and get a lower interest rate. It also simplifies your debt repayment, so you're less likely to miss payments each month. Debt consolidation loans and credit card balance transfers are two common types of debt consolidation.

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Who Pays for Bankruptcies?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated January 23, 2024

When individuals find themselves in debt, bankruptcy can be a solution that gives you a fresh start. But when someone files for bankruptcy, who pays for it? Learn more here.

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Filing for Bankruptcy

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated January 23, 2024

Although filing for bankruptcy can be a difficult decision to make, it is also a solution that will release you from crippling debt. Learn everything you need to know here before you get started.

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REPAYE Plan 101

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 21, 2023

The Revised Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan (REPAYE Plan) is an income-driven repayment (IDR) plan for federal student loans. Borrowers who aren’t in default and have an eligible federal student loan can make payments under the REPAYE Plan. It requires you to pay 10% of your discretionary income, and the repayment period is 20-25 years.

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Debt Settlement Attorneys: How Can They Help?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 20, 2023

One way you can get debt relief is through debt settlement. A good debt settlement attorney can help you settle your debts. They should also be able to provide advice on other debt-relief options like debt consolidation, debt management, and bankruptcy. A debt settlement lawyer may be able to help you get a better overall settlement deal. Perhaps most importantly, they can help you avoid the stress of communicating with aggressive debt collectors. This article will explain debt settlement and the benefits of hiring a debt settlement attorney.

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When Will a Debt Collector Sue for Unpaid Debt?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 18, 2023

Though there's no standard timeline, you may be most at risk of a debt collection lawsuit after six months of not paying your debt. If you stop making timely payments on a debt, your creditor will first attempt to collect it by sending you notices of nonpayment. This may go on for several weeks before collection attempts intensify. Eventually, the creditor may charge off the debt to a third-party collection agency. If the debt collector can’t successfully collect the debt, you may be at risk of a lawsuit.

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California Debt Collection Laws

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 8, 2023

California has two important laws — the Rosenthal Act and the Debt Collection Licensing Act — that protect California residents against original creditor and third-party debt collector harassment and abuse. Californians also benefit from the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, which offers many protections and gives you certain rights. The statute of limitations for most consumer debt is four years in California.

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What Are the Pros and Cons of a Lease-To-Own Car?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 30, 2023

A lease-to-own (or rent-to-own) program allows borrowers to make installment payments on a vehicle over a period of time determined in the lease. Once all the car payments have been made, the borrower (the lessee) assumes ownership of the vehicle. These arrangements can particularly benefit borrowers who have bad credit and don’t qualify for traditional leases or car loans. That said, these agreements tend to be expensive, so it’s important to understand the terms of the lease-to-own contract before you enter into one.

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Should You Surrender an Unwanted Car in Bankruptcy?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 27, 2023

If you’re financing a car with a car loan, you’ll need to decide how to deal with it when you file bankruptcy. If the payments are too high or you simply want to get rid of the car and the loan, you can surrender the vehicle back to the lender and have the debt discharged as part of your bankruptcy case. Often, the lender will pick up the car or schedule a mutually agreeable place to meet. If they don’t, you may need to seek legal help.

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The Complete Guide To Medical Bills and Wage Garnishment

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 25, 2023

A healthcare provider can try to collect unpaid medical debts, just like any other debt collector might. A provider may even take legal action to garnish a patient’s wages if their collection efforts are ignored. Before a provider can take your wages, the facility or physician must sue you for nonpayment and win the case in court. If a healthcare provider wins a lawsuit against you, the court will award a judgment (court order) to the provider or its collection agent to garnish your wages. You may be able to avoid or stop a garnishment. Learn more in this article.

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How To Dispute a Debt You Don’t Owe

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated October 10, 2023

If you’re contacted about a debt you don’t owe, you’ll want to dispute it with the creditor or debt collector. Often these consumer debts are also incorrectly reported to the three major credit bureaus, so you’ll want to check your credit report, too. You can also send a dispute letter to the credit bureaus asking them to remove incorrect information. Here are the four basic steps to dispute a debt you don’t owe: 1. Ensure the debt collector has validated the debt. 2. Send a dispute letter (or the tear-off portion of the debt validation letter, which allows you to easily start the dispute process). 3. Check your credit report and send a credit dispute letter or notices of dispute to any reporting agency with inaccurate information. 4. Follow up if/as needed until the matter is resolved.

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Removing a Judgment from Your Credit Report

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 29, 2023

Having a judgment on your credit report will lower your credit score, sometimes significantly. In some instances, though, you can get this negative information removed from your credit history. As with any item on your credit report, you have the right to dispute any judgment on your report that you feel has been made in error or has already been resolved. If a creditor has entered a judgment against you, here’s what you’ll need to do to get it removed from your credit report.

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How Much Does Credit Repair Cost?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 29, 2023

While a credit repair service cannot do anything that you can’t do yourself, it may be more convenient for you to enlist their help. Just remember that the cost of credit repair varies depending on the borrower’s circumstances, what type of debt they have, and what blemishes they have on their credit report. Read more to learn how to repair your credit yourself, what the benefits might be of hiring a credit repair service, and how to find a reputable one if that is the route you end up taking.

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Can I Lose My Tax Refund if I Default on Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 29, 2023

Yes, unfortunately your tax refund can be taken (garnished) if you’ve defaulted on your federal student loan. Federal student loans are guaranteed by the U.S. government, and the government has power over tax refunds. Only federal student loan borrowers are subject to tax garnishments. Private student loan holders can have their wages or bank account garnished, but the private lender cannot garnish your tax refund and must take extra steps, such as going through the courts, to order a garnishment. In this article, we explain the student loan tax garnishment process and give you some tips on how to keep your tax refund money safe from garnishment.

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California Repossession Law

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 29, 2023

California law permits cars to be repossessed after one late or missed loan payment. Cars may be repossessed after missed insurance payments as well. There is no legally required grace period, and the repossession company doesn’t have to give you notice that they are repossessing your car.

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PACER Guide: How To Get Your Court Notices Without an Attorney

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 29, 2023

PACER stands for Public Access to Court Electronic Records. It’s a system to access case information, the docket, and the documents filed in a particular case electronically.

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What Is a Judgment and What Do I Do About It?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 29, 2023

A judgment is a court order. If a creditor obtains a debt-related judgment against you, it allows them to recover the debt. Consumer and personal debt from medical bills, car loans, credit cards, back rent, student loans, IRS debt, child support, and other overdue financial obligations can result in a judgments if you get sued for the debt and the creditor wins the lawsuit. These judgments can be structured as a monetary judgment or a judgment lien against property. Filing for bankruptcy can help you prevent, pause, or even stop, certain judgments, including wage garnishments and bank account levies.

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Debt Lawyers: Who Are They & What Do They Do?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated September 21, 2023

As a consumer, you have certain legal rights and protections. These rights extend to your interactions with debt collectors and collection agencies. If you’re being harassed by a debt collector, you can hire a debt lawyer to help you understand and defend your rights. These attorneys can also help defend you against debt collection lawsuits. If you just need help figuring out what to do about overwhelming debt, a debt settlement lawyer can explain your debt relief options and help you pursue them successfully.

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What To Do if a Debt Collector Is Calling You at Work

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated September 19, 2023

Debt collectors can call you at work unless and until you tell them to stop calling. Under federal law, debt collectors and creditors are prohibited from contacting borrowers at work once they have reason to know that a borrower's employer doesn't permit these kinds of calls. The law does allow for other collection tactics, so it is important to know your rights concerning debt collection communications.

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Stop Debt Collectors With a Cease and Desist Letter (+ Template)

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated September 19, 2023

A cease and desist letter is a formal written request that you send a debt collector telling them to stop contacting you about a debt. Once the debt collector receives a cease and desist letter, they must stop further contact save for one final call to tell you what actions they intend to take. While sending a cease and desist letter is a good way to stop debt collectors from harassing you, it doesn’t make your debt disappear. If the debt is valid, the debt collector may choose to take legal action to recover the debt.

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Consequences of Not Paying Student Loans: Explained

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 12, 2023

Federal student loan payments are set to resume in October 2023. If you can’t make your student loan payments your credit score, employment opportunities, and emotional well-being can all be affected. This article explains the consequences you may face if you don’t make your student loan payments and proposes some strategies to deal with student loan debt when you can’t make your monthly payment.

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Is an Income-Contingent Repayment Plan Right for You?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 12, 2023

The Income-Contingent Repayment (ICR) Plan is one of four income-driven repayment options for federal student loans. It’s the only one of these four options that parent PLUS borrowers can utilize, which is one of the main upsides, if you have that kind of loan. The ICR has the longest repayment period of any income-driven plan at 25 years. This allows for lower monthly payments for borrowers but, the total amount paid over the loan's lifespan, including interest, is generally higher compared to other plans.

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What’s the Best Student Loan Repayment Plan for Me?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 11, 2023

The best student loan repayment plan is the one that works for you, your goals, and your financial situation. To figure out your best option, do your research and consider the pros and cons of each plan. (Hint: Consider whether the monthly payment will be affordable and also how much interest you’ll pay over the life of the loan.) Then sign up for the plan that makes the most sense for you. The good news is that the federal government provides a lot of flexibility to borrowers, and you can change your repayment plan anytime. There are four types of federal student loan repayment plans. Most borrowers stick with the 10-year Standard Repayment Plan or choose an income-driven repayment plan. Though they are less common, Graduated Repayment Plans or Extended Repayment Plans offer a smart option for some borrowers.

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4 Income-Based Repayment Options for Federal Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 11, 2023

There are four different income-driven repayment plans for student loan borrowers that received federal student aid. The IBR Plan, the SAVE Plan ( formerly the REPAYE Plan), the PAYE Plan, and the ICR Plan. They each have different eligibility requirements and potential benefits compared to the standard repayment plan.

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Want To Get Rid of Student Loans? Try These 6 Ideas

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 8, 2023

If you feel like you’re drowning in student loan debt and need help managing or getting rid of it, you’re in luck. In this article, we rounded up six potential options to deal with overwhelming student loan debt, including loan forgiveness programs, loan discharge programs, loan settlement options, repayment plans, refinancing options, and bankruptcy.

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Can You Get Student Loan Forgiveness if You Drop Out?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 7, 2023

Most people go to college with hopes of getting a degree and creating a good life for themselves. Unfortunately, unforeseen hardships — often financial — lead many students to drop out before they finish their degree. If that’s you, know that you have options to deal with your student loan debt! You may still qualify for student loan forgiveness programs like Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF), or loan forgiveness after paying on an income-based repayment plan. If you need a temporary repayment pause while you find work or figure out your next steps, you can apply for forbearance or deferment.

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8 Effective Strategies To Lower Your Student Loan Payments

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated September 6, 2023

If you’re worried about how you’re going to make your student loan payment once the repayment pause ends this summer, it’s good you’re planning ahead and doing some research! You have many options to lower your student loan payment, including: 1. Signing up for an income-driven, graduated, or extended repayment plan 2. Enrolling in autopay 3. Refinancing or consolidating your student loans 4. Applying for deferment or forbearance 5. Requesting a temporary payment decrease or deferral (if you have a private student loan)

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10 Options if You Can’t Make Your Student Loan Payments

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 6, 2023

If your student loans are coming due and you can’t afford the payments, don’t panic. This article explores 10 strategies to help: 1. Apply for an income-driven repayment plan. 2. Refinance your loans. 3. Seek financial counseling. 4. Increase your income and/or lower expenses. 5. Consolidate your loans. 6. Set up automatic payments. 7. Request student loan deferment. 8. Apply for student loan forbearance. 9. Negotiate with your lender. 10. File bankruptcy to erase student loans for good.

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Why Do I Keep Getting Calls About Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 6, 2023

If you’re a student loan borrower, you’re probably used to receiving phone calls, letters, emails, and text messages about your student loan debt. While some of these are legitimate messages from federal loan servicers, many are scams. If you're getting calls about student loans and you don't have any loans, that's a good sign it's a scam. Below, we go into detail on how to spot/prevent a scam. Bottom line? If it seems too good to be true, it's most likely a scam.

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Where Do I Find Out How Much I Owe in Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 1, 2023

If you want to go back to school, finance a house, manage your debt, or file for bankruptcy, you’ll want to find out how much you owe in student loans. It might feel like you need a degree in finance to keep track of your financial aid, but we’re here to help! Below, we detail how to figure out your federal and private student loan balance, how to manage your student loan debt, and what to do if you cannot stay on top of your student loans.

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Guide to Extended Repayment Plans & Managing Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 1, 2023

An Extended Repayment Plan is a student loan repayment plan that allows borrowers to lower their monthly payment amount by stretching repayment over 25 years. To qualify, you must have Direct Loans or Federal Family Education Loans (FFEL), and your loan balance must be at least $30,000. You can choose from fixed payments or graduated payments in an Extended Repayment Plan. You will not be eligible for Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) if you enroll in an extended plan.

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Student Loan Forgiveness Programs for Nurses

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 1, 2023

Becoming a nurse takes dedication and lots of education, which means it’s likely you have at least some student loan debt. Luckily there are several specialized student loan forgiveness programs to help nurses erase their student debt. The most popular and well-known forgiveness program is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF), where borrowers pay an income-based monthly payment for 10 years and then have their remaining debt forgiven. But there are other forgiveness programs as well, including the Federal Perkins Loan program, the Nurse Corps Loan Repayment Program, the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Program, the NHSC Rural Community Program, the National Institute of Health Program, and more. Below we detail the different student loan forgiveness options as well as the qualifications for each specific program. Take a look!

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What Is a Time-Barred Debt?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 30, 2023

A time-barred debt is one where the creditor has missed the deadline to legally bring a claim against you in court. Unfortunately, debt collectors may still try to contact you about old debts that are time-barred by the statute of limitations. But there are ways to deal with these debt collectors. Read this article to learn more about how to tell if your debt is covered by a statute of limitations and what to do if you’re contacted by a creditor that is trying to collect a time-barred debt.

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Can You Remove Collection Accounts From Your Credit Report?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 30, 2023

If you have a debt sent to collections, it will be recorded on your credit report and hurt your credit score. Sometimes collections accounts are incorrectly reported or reported on old debt. If there are errors regarding collections accounts on your credit report, you have the legal right to dispute them and have them removed. This shouldn't cost you anything. You can also write a goodwill letter to ask the creditor or collection agency to remove the collections account from your report. This isn’t guaranteed to work, but it won’t hurt to ask. If the information about the collections account is correct and current, you can’t have it removed from your credit report. Be aware that so-called credit repair companies that offer to clean up your credit report for a fee may be a scam.

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Student Loan Forgiveness for Healthcare Workers: The Ultimate Guide

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 29, 2023

There are many programs designed specifically for healthcare workers to receive student loan forgiveness. Most serve specific types of healthcare workers and have other requirements around the length of time you work in healthcare and where you work. Consider each of these factors as you look at your options. If you’re struggling to pay your loans, you can also consider applying for a loan deferment or forbearance or switching to an income-driven repayment plan to help make your monthly payments more manageable.

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What Is the Standard Repayment Plan for Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 29, 2023

Standard repayment plans are available thanks to several different repayment option choices. These plans include extended, graduated, income-contingent, and income-based. All of these options provide borrowers with the ability to lower their monthly payments or extend the term of their loan thereby keeping their payments low.

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5 Solid Steps for Negotiating With Debt Collectors

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 25, 2023

If your debt has been turned over to a debt collection agency, negotiating with that debt collector may seem intimidating. But in many cases, negotiating with creditors or lenders isn’t as hard as you may think. To successfully negotiate a debt settlement agreement: - Verify the debt and debt collector - Know your rights - Review your finances and develop a plan - Start negotiating the settlement and be prepared for counteroffers - Get the agreement in writing

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Yes, Your Paycheck Can Be Garnished if You Don’t Pay Your Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 23, 2023

If you fall behind on your student loan payments, the lender may garnish your wages. This means that a portion of your paycheck will be withheld by your employer and sent directly to your loan servicer to repay your debt. Wage garnishment can have a significant impact on your finances and make it difficult to meet your basic living expenses. However, you have options available to avoid default and wage garnishment, such as loan consolidation, income-driven repayment plans, and loan rehabilitation. It's important to understand your rights and options when it comes to repaying your student loans to avoid wage garnishment and other negative consequences.

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If I Go To Grad School, Can I Defer My Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 22, 2023

In many cases, you can defer your undergraduate student loans if you go to grad school. When you defer a loan, you aren’t responsible for making the monthly payments for a period of time. Interest on the loan may continue to accrue though.

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The Complete Guide To Disputing Student Loans on Your Credit Report

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 22, 2023

Some student loan borrowers find errors on their credit report. So, it’s a good idea to get in the habit of checking your credit report from each of the big three credit reporting agencies — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — at least once a year. Luckily, you can get your credit report for free, without impacting your credit score. You also have the right to dispute inaccurate information on your credit report and have it removed. Let’s review what to check for and how to deal with inaccuracies.

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What Is the Statute of Limitations for Debt?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated August 17, 2023

Statutes of limitations are state laws that limit the time a debt collector has to bring a lawsuit. After the statute of limitations has passed, debt collectors can still sue you, but the statute of limitations is a strong defense in a debt collection lawsuit. The length of these laws can vary tremendously by state and by the type of contract you made for the debt (oral, written, etc.).

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Private Student Loans and Wage Garnishment

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 16, 2023

Defaulting on the payment of your private student loans can negatively affect your credit score and result in other undesirable consequences. One is wage garnishment. A private student loan lender can even levy or take money from your bank account. Thankfully, there are solutions that can help you avoid these challenges and even provide debt relief.

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Student Loan Garnishments And Hardship

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 16, 2023

If you default on your student loans, you risk having your wages, taxes, and Social Security benefits garnished. Your credit score will also suffer. To avoid a student loan wage garnishment, or to reduce the amount that will be garnished, you need to take action. You can do this even after you’ve defaulted on your student loan. In this article, we’ll help you learn how to manage student loan wage garnishments, so you can avoid adding to your financial troubles.

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Who Can Garnish My Wages?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 16, 2023

Many types of creditors have the right to file a complaint in court for unpaid debt. Wage garnishment laws give creditors the ability to withhold money from your paycheck, but not all creditors are required to go to court before they can garnish your wages. This article will explain what wage garnishment is, who can garnish your wages, and how bankruptcy can help stop wage garnishment.

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What Are Disposable Earnings?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 11, 2023

Did you know that creditors have the right to seek a garnishment order against you if you fail to repay your debt? This article will give you an overview of what income may be garnished under the law and how to avoid and/or stop garnishment actions by filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case.

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Rebuilding Credit After Bankruptcy (A Guide)

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 11, 2023

A bankruptcy does not destroy your credit forever. Instead, following some simple tricks and taking advantage of the various credit repair tools can help you build a stronger credit report and higher credit score after filing for bankruptcy.

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Rebuilding Credit After Bankruptcy (A Guide)

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 11, 2023

A bankruptcy does not destroy your credit forever. Instead, following some simple tricks and taking advantage of the various credit repair tools can help you build a stronger credit report and higher credit score after filing for bankruptcy.

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Bankruptcy Basics: What Is Bankruptcy & How Do I File?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 10, 2023

In a nutshell, a bankruptcy case is a legal course of action that puts your debt behind you so you can get a fresh start. This article will give you a short explainer on bankruptcy basics, including what types of cases you can file, how to file bankruptcy, and what to expect from the bankruptcy process.

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What Is Bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 10, 2023

Bankruptcy is a legal tool to obtain debt relief and get a fresh start. Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy are the most common types. This article explores consumer bankruptcy basics, the different types of bankruptcy, and the bankruptcy process overall.

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What Is My Bankruptcy Discharge Date?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 9, 2023

The ultimate goal of bankruptcy is to get a discharge order, which wipes out debts like credit cards and medical bills. Along with your bankruptcy case number, keep your discharge date handy in case you’re contacted about a debt that was discharged.

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How Much Debt Do I Need To File for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 9, 2023

Bankruptcy laws don't specify a minimum debt requirement to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. As long as you qualify to file and meet all the requirements, you can file Chapter 7 and have your dischargeable debts wiped away.

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How to Pay Off Credit Card Debt When You Have No Money

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 9, 2023

There are a number of strategies to put in place when you find yourself in credit card debt. Common advice includes tightening your budget, prioritizing your highest-interest accounts and negotiating with creditors. But those strategies only work if you actually have some money to put toward paying down your credit card debt. What are you supposed to do if you truly have little to no money to put toward your debt?

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Discharge vs. Dismissal: What's the Difference?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 9, 2023

When filing bankruptcy for the first time, many people get confused about the different terms lawyers and courts use. Two words that frequently confuse first-time filers are “dismissed” and “discharged.” This article explains each term, what the differences are, and when lawyers and the court are most likely to use them when referring to your case.

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What Does a Bankruptcy Discharge Do?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated August 9, 2023

A bankruptcy discharge is a court order that wipes out certain debts like credit card debts and medical bills. Once you receive a discharge, you're no longer legally obligated to repay the debts that were discharged. Some debts, like those that are secured by collateral, can only be discharged if you give up the collateral. In Chapter 7 cases, dischargeable debts will be eliminated in a matter of months. In Chapter 13 cases, the filers must complete their 3-5 year payment plan before their dischargeable debts are eliminated.

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What Does a Bankruptcy Discharge Do?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated August 9, 2023

A bankruptcy discharge is a court order that wipes out certain debts like credit card debts and medical bills. Once you receive a discharge, you're no longer legally obligated to repay the debts that were discharged. Some debts, like those that are secured by collateral, can only be discharged if you give up the collateral. In Chapter 7 cases, dischargeable debts will be eliminated in a matter of months. In Chapter 13 cases, the filers must complete their 3-5 year payment plan before their dischargeable debts are eliminated.

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How To Dispute or Reduce Expensive Medical Bills

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 9, 2023

Even if you have health insurance, deductibles, copays, and non-covered services can add up quickly. Without health insurance, medical bills become unmanageable fast. Some people don’t realize you can negotiate medical bills. Also, billing mistakes can lead to overcharges. Here are some tips for dealing with expensive medical bills: - Compare your itemized bill to your insurer’s explanation of benefits - Ensure you were charged for the correct services and dispute errors - If your insurer denies a claim for services that should be covered, appeal the decision - Ask for financial assistance from the provider and explore community resources - Negotiate your medical bills by offering payment - Know your rights around surprise medical bills - Don’t use credit cards to pay medical bills (to avoid mounting interest/fees and consequences to your credit)

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How To Deal With Debt Collectors (When You Can’t Pay)

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 9, 2023

If you’re being contacted by debt collectors for a debt you simply can’t repay, it’s important to know your rights to protect yourself from harassment and validate the debt. Once you know the debt is valid, look into your debt relief options. Getting a free consultation with a nonprofit credit counselor can help you understand your options and make a plan to deal with your debt.

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How To Stop Collection Calls: A Comprehensive Guide

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 9, 2023

If you have debt you’re struggling to manage, you don’t need the added stress of irritating collection calls. Keep reading to learn how you can stop debt collection calls from interrupting your life.

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Does Bankruptcy Clear Judgments?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 8, 2023

When a creditor or debt collector gets a judgment against you, it's dischargeable as long as the original debt was dischargeable. The question becomes a bit more complicated if the creditor gets a judgment lien on your property. Here’s how it works.

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Can I File Bankruptcy Even Though I’m Unemployed?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 8, 2023

If you’re unemployed and your only source of income is unemployment benefits, you can still file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. To file Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you need a steady source of income, and unemployment benefits aren’t likely enough to cover the requirements for Chapter 13. While it’s possible and common for people to file Chapter 7 while unemployed, you’ll want to consider the timing of your case.

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What are Priority Unsecured Debts?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 8, 2023

We usually hear debts divided into two categories: secured and unsecured. A debt is secured if the lender has a security interest in some property and can take that property if you don’t pay. But, in bankruptcy, there are other important distinctions. Some unsecured debts get special treatment. In this article, we’ll explain the different types of unsecured debt, and what it means when a debt has priority.

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How A Personal Bankruptcy Lawyer Can Help You Erase Debt

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 8, 2023

A personal bankruptcy lawyer can help you erase debts or you may choose to file bankruptcy on your own. Depending on the complexity of your situation and the type of bankruptcy you file, hiring a personal bankruptcy lawyer can be a great investment.

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Bankruptcy for Senior Citizens

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 8, 2023

Filing any bankruptcy can be a complicated process but filing bankruptcy as a senior citizen can be especially challenging. This article will discuss when bankruptcy may be right for seniors, the types of bankruptcy and debt relief alternatives to filing for bankruptcy.

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What Does Bankruptcy Mean?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 8, 2023

Bankruptcy is one of those words that everyone’s heard but many don’t really know what it means. Especially with so many high profile bankruptcies in the news these days, it can be hard to figure how bankruptcy can actually help a regular consumer. Let’s take a look at what bankruptcy means and how the different types of bankruptcy enable you to take back charge of your finances.

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Is Filing for Bankruptcy Worth It?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated August 8, 2023

Filing bankruptcy gives you immediate protection from your creditors and a financial fresh start by wiping out certain debts like credit card debt, payday loans, and medical debt. If your wages are being garnished or credit card companies and payday lenders are harassing you to collect payments you can't afford to pay, filing bankruptcy may be the best way to get permanent relief. But if most of your debts are non-dischargeable, filing bankruptcy may not be worth it.

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Can a Repo Man Enter a Locked Gate?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 3, 2023

If you've fallen behind on your car payments, you've probably started getting phone calls from the bank about a repossession. The good news is, the repo man can't legally enter a locked gate or garage without your permission. But, a repo agent may legally enter your yard, driveway, or other private property if nothing is blocking their access. Keep reading to learn more.

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Repossession: The Basics

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 3, 2023

Repossession is when a lender takes back property that was used as collateral for a loan. If you’re behind on your car loan payments, you could suddenly lose your car, boat, appliances, or furniture without warning through repossession. On top of that, having a repossession on your credit report will hurt your credit score. Read this article to learn more about the repossession process and how you can get back on track.

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How To Pay Off Collections: A Complete Guide

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 1, 2023

Here's how to pay off a debt in collections: Step 1: Know Your Rights Step 2: Respond to the Debt Collector or Collection Agency Step 3: Verify the Debt Step 4: Check the Statute of Limitations in Your State Step 5: Review Your Budget & Make a Payment Strategy Step 6: Get Your Agreement in Writing Step 7: Check Your Credit Report If you're struggling to repay several debts, it may be time to look into Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Filing Chapter 7 stops all collections activities (thanks to the automatic stay) and can erase most types of consumer debt.

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Bankruptcy Issues Same-Sex Couples Face

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated August 1, 2023

So long as a couple is legally married, they can file bankruptcy together. And same-sex married couples who file bankruptcy are treated just like heterosexual married couples. They have the same right to file bankruptcy jointly and the same responsibility to list their spouse’s income and any community property in their bankruptcy forms.

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How Can Bankruptcy Help You With Foreclosure?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 1, 2023

Filing for bankruptcy will stop foreclosure proceedings temporarily due to the benefits of the automatic stay. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy may allow you to keep your home by allowing you to make up your past-due payments via a 3-5 year repayment plan.

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How Does Debt Settlement Affect Your Credit Score?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 1, 2023

Debt settlement allows you to pay off a debt for less than the total you owe, but it can lower your credit score. If you compare the permanent benefits of getting rid of a debt burden against the temporary negative aspects of a lower credit score, you might find that debt settlement is a good option for you. If you’re interested in settling your debt, keep reading to learn how debt settlement affects your credit score and whether debt settlement or a different debt relief option is the best for you.

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Your Credit Score Is Not Ruined Forever After a Bankruptcy Filing

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 1, 2023

Bankruptcy is a useful debt relief tool. It can give you a fresh start when unpaid debt becomes unmanageable. Sadly, many people attach a stigma to filing bankruptcy and fail to see its advantages and benefits. Instead, they focus on the notion that bankruptcy will forever ruin their credit. But this is just one of the many myths of bankruptcy. It often causes people to put off filing, which only delays bankruptcy’s benefits. While your credit score is affected by bankruptcy in the short term, we’ll discuss how your credit score is not permanently ruined by filing bankruptcy.

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Should I Pay the Debt Collector or the Original Creditor?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated August 1, 2023

If you’re able to do so, pay the original creditor before your debt goes to collections. Having a debt sent to collections will damage your credit score and may limit your options for repayment. In most cases, the original creditor will offer better repayment options than a debt collector will. However, if your debt has been sold to a debt buyer and the original creditor no longer owns it, you’ll need to pay the collection agency to clear up the debt.

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How It Started… One Upsolver’s Quest To Discharge Her Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated August 1, 2023

One Upsolver who is actively in the process of seeking a discharge of her student loans has shared parts of her journey with us. While her incredibly detailed outline will soon be turned into a guide of sorts, we thought it might be helpful to give others an idea of where she started.

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The Complete Guide To Refinancing Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated July 28, 2023

When you refinance your student loans, you take out a new loan and use it to pay off your existing student loans. There are pros and cons to refinancing: The biggest pro is that you may get a lower interest rate or be able to reduce the amount of your monthly payments. Reducing your interest rate means you pay less over the long run. Lowering your payments each month can help you stay on top of your debt if you’re struggling. If you have federal loans, the biggest drawback to refinancing is that you’ll lose certain benefits like access to student loan forgiveness and economic hardship programs. Regardless of the type of loans you have, you’ll need a good credit score (or a co-signer with a good score) to get approved for a student loan refinance and get a good interest rate.

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Student Loan Rehabilitation: How To Get Out of Default

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated July 28, 2023

Student loan rehabilitation is one way to get your federal student loans out of default status. If you’re currently trying to get student loan relief but aren’t eligible for any programs because you’re in default, student loan rehabilitation may be exactly what you need for your fresh start. To get your student loans rehabilitated and out of default, you need to contact your loan servicer, create a payment plan, complete the required paperwork, and make a certain number of monthly payments.

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Debt Relief: What Are the Options & How Do They Work?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated July 28, 2023

If you have debts that you’re unable to pay, there are several options that can help you to get back on your feet. These options range from filing bankruptcy to creating some sort of payment plan that prevents debts from charging off or having creditors sue you and garnish your wages. Here we will look at some avenues to help you manage your debt.

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IRS Wage Garnishment Procedures

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated July 28, 2023

If you owe the IRS unpaid taxes, they might collect on the debt by putting a garnish on your wages and collecting their money directly from your paycheck. Learn about the rules they must follow when garnishing wages, including how much of your income is exempt from garnishment and how much notice they are required to give you. Also, find out what you can do to stop a wage garnishment that's already in place.

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