I have $21,000 in credit card debt with high interest and I can only pay minimums. I was laid off from a job of 6 years in August. I was given severance pay until the end of Oct and started a new job Nov. 1st. I make about $10,000/year less now. My husband makes even less.
I cannot pay the credit cards that are due after Nov. 15. I have been current until now. I was contacted by Freedom Enrollment Advisors or Actify Solutions about invalidating the debt. This appears to mean not paying the debt and passing on any collection information on to them. They try to get necessary information from the debt collectors which 97% of the time the debt collectors cannot provide. I am very sceptical and feel they are saying what I want to hear.
1. Can I file bankruptcy only on the credit card debt (3 cards) that I owe? I have no house note and one car payment. I have a child starting college in the Fall of 2018.
2. I have a 401(k) with approximately $70,000. Is that money considered when filing bankruptcy? Can they make me use 401(k) money to pay off the cards or deny bankruptcy because of the 401(k)?
3. Have you heard of this debt agency? Or do you think it is one of many scams?
I was not familiar with Freedom Enrollment Advisors so I went to their site at freedomenrollmentadvisor.com and clicked in the BBB Accredited Business logo on the bottom of their site. – Source
When you click on it it takes you to a BBB page for Actify Solutions. – Source
One reason that comes to mind is it is the same company. If not, then is Freedom Enrollment Advisors might just a front end marketing arm of Actify Solutions?
The domain name for Freedom Enrollment Advisors is registered to:
Registrant Name: Jon Snow
Registrant Organization: NA
Registrant Street: 27595 Brookside Lane
Registrant City: San Juan Capistrano
Registrant State/Province: CA
Registrant Postal Code: 92675
Registrant Country: US
Registrant Phone: +1.9499434225
Registrant Phone Ext:
Registrant Fax Ext:
Registrant Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The State of California has no company registered to do business under the name Freedom Enrollment Advisors.
I’ll leave it to you to check out the companies however you want to from this point. Here are a couple of guides to help you do that.
- The Ultimate Consumer Guide to Checking Out a Debt Relief Company Before You Sign On the Line
- How to Check Out a Business or Company to Avoid Getting Scammed or Ripped Off
I applaud your desire to seek additional information. It would be a mistake to shop from a solution first because we first need to figure out what the situation is and apply the right tool to use.
Debt validation is a tool to use on some debts. For example, if you had a National Collegiate Student Loan Trust loan I would urge you to validate that specific debt.
If you have a debt with a major bank then it’s not a good strategy unless you wait through defaulting and then hope the loan gets sold off to a debt buyer who can’t find the necessary information to validate it. Sometimes asking for validation is just an invitation to get sued.
As you can see, validation can be a good tool for the right debt but it is not an across the board solution, in my mind. A better approach is when the right debt is validated, other debts get settled, and still others you might want to keep or pay.
Ultimately though, bankruptcy is always the first option to consider because it is the least expensive and fastest way to get a fresh start. Those who file bankruptcy do better than those who don’t, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Bankruptcy has some tremendous options. Your debt situation would be resolved in about 90 days for around $1,700. You can immediately begin to rebuild your credit quickly. You would also be able to get back to saving and building your emergency fund quickly.
Nobody can tell you what the right solution is for you. What people should do is give you information to help you understand what the different solutions mean for you. From that, then you can make your choice on what you want to do.
To get the ball rolling, take a look at my Get Out of Debt Calculator.
Before you leap at any solution I would urge you to speak with a local bankruptcy attorney for free and understand what bankruptcy would mean for you.
To answer your specific questions:
1. If you file bankruptcy you will need to list all of your creditors. If you wanted to carry a card through bankruptcy you could arrange that but discuss it with your bankruptcy attorney.
2. Don’t touch the protected 401(k). Leave it alone. That money needs to be protected and grow towards your retirement when you will need it most.
3. I’ve never heard of Freedom Enrollment Advisors and I have had a rash of questions recently about Actify Solutions.