A debt lawyer is a legal practitioner who helps people collect, pay or write- off debts. These are the three basic services debt lawyers provide:
Debt lawyers help you collect debts owing to you. Small business owners and professionals often need a lawyer who can run after other businesses, customers and clients who owe them money for professional fees or for goods and services supplied. They run after people who owe you money and ask them to pay the money owing to you. If your debtors fail or refuse to pay the amounts due to you, a debt collection lawyer can file a complaint in court to force your debtors to pay the debt with interest and penalties.
Debt relief lawyers pay off debts for you. As a business owner or professional, you may owe money to suppliers and other businesses that provide you with goods and services. When you fail to pay what is owing to your creditors, you may get what is called a letter of demand, asking you to pay what you owe plus interest, penalties and other charges. A debt settlement lawyer can negotiate on your behalf with your lenders. They can ask your lenders to restructure a loan, to give you more time to pay your loans or, if you are in financial distress, they can negotiate to reduce the amounts you pay or ask that you pay in installments.
Debt lawyers can file bankruptcy proceedings for you. Debt lawyers can help you commence bankruptcy proceedings. There are different types of bankruptcy proceedings and the rules for bankruptcy are different on the federal and state level. They can help you prove that you are unable to pay your debts as they fall due. They can help liquidate your assets. Liquidation means properties such as real estate, jewelry, paintings, cars, stock certificates are sold off and turned into cash. The cash will then be used to pay your creditors.
What services can you expect from a debt lawyer? On your behalf, debt lawyers can:
- Write to your creditors or debtors.
- Write to government agencies such as the IRS.
- Fill up forms for submission to bankruptcy courts.
- Submit financial records (profit and loss statements, etc.)
- Find assets owned by your debtors
- Attach liens on assets owned by your debtors to be used to pay off debts owing to you.