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The Coastal Credit Solutions Advisor Recommended Debt Settlement. – Jeff

“Dear Steve,

I owe more than $16,000 to credit card companies — Capital One, BoA, Chase — got behind and further behind — and am now trying to figure out what to do.

I want to pay what I owe but some of this is late fees, higher interest, etc. My biggest problem is at this point I simply can’t afford to pay each of them what they want in minimum payments.I have not contacted any of the companies at this point because I don’t know what to say. I did work out a payment plan with Chase at one point, but it istoo high.

I talked with a Coastal Credit Solutions advisor who recommended debt settlement,. I am considering whether to use their service …. but everything I read on the internet makes me leery of any of these groups. The appeal is they say they can consolidate it into one monthly payment.

Is there a way to negotiate a debt settlement and a payment schedule myself through letters to the card companies (I can’t afford a lump sum payment at this point). I would prefer to deal with this in writing if possible since I feel I’m less likely to get talked into something I really can’t afford.



Dear Jeff,

Thank you for contacting me.

I’d never visited the Coastal Credit Solutions site before so I took a look around. It certainly is an attractive site and I’m happy they publish their business address.

I’m concerned the advisor recommended debt settlement for you. Since you can’t afford the minimum payments now, and you probably don’t have $8,000 at hand to begin to settle these debts now, starting a debt settlement plan is going to toss you into turmoil. It will land you in collections and hurt your credit report and credit score. You may even be sued during the process and it could result in a big tax bill for you from the forgiven debt.

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But don’t take my word for that, even Coastal Credit Solutions says so on their site.


Coastal Credit Solutions


While the little video spokesmodel on the site says most debt solutions are a low or no cost, I find it very hard to believe there would be no cost for debt settlement services. So how much did they tell you they would cost?

I was very surprised to see that they apparently are not the actual service provider but a referral agency. Their graphic on their process page actually says “Our Credit Advisor will help you prepare and package all the paperwork required by the financial service provider.”


Coastal Credit Solutions


Since they may not be the actual company that would provide you with debt settlement services, companies in this position have a vested interest selling you into the program and will most likely get a commission from making that sale.

I did have to chuckle when I saw their client login went to another related company I wrote about just this morning. It must be my GNUSA day. See my post “Have You Heard of the National Debt Crisis Center? – Eric“.

So, if you are going to review all of your options then you need to find a local bankruptcy attorney and make an appointment for a free consultation. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy would allow you to pay what you can afford, would prevent you from being sued, would not result in any tax liability, and would instantly stop all collections efforts.

Seriously, Jeff, even though you might be afraid of bankruptcy or talked out of considering it, it certainly seems like the pros address your needs and it is worth serious consideration.

If you have any documents from Coastal like a client agreement I’d love to see it. You can upload it here.

Please update me on your progress by posting updates here in the comments section of your question. I’m very interested in how this works out for you.

P.S. Be sure to read ‘The Secret of Surviving Through Difficult Economic Times. What I Learned On My Journey‘.

About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.


  • Thanks Steve. It is a big decision.

    I appreciate all your input. I feel somewhat better about this now than I did yesterday. I reckon that’s a start.

  • Steve, Michael

    I’m appreciate your advice, help. I have sent some information on my situation to the CRN network via the website … I’m not that sure I WANT to do this myself, I just know it has to be done and I don’t want to be scammed.
    I’ll also call an attorney.

    Oh, and Steve, I figure my credit is already pretty bad due to being behind and over the limit, so I don’t expect to come out a winner on that end. But I don’t want to be sued, etc.
    I want to pay. I just want to be able to do it and still have enough left to buy gas, keep my transportation running, etc.

    Thanks again — I’ve bookmarked this site. Wish I’d found it months ago.


    • Jeff,

      You know, there is nothing that says you can go bankrupt and get all the legal protections it affords and still repay what you want to, to your creditors to accomplish some inner goal.

      The irony is that at this point Jeff filing bankruptcy will probably increase your credit score since it will put an end to the current negative activity, instantly.


  • Jeff,

    You can certainly be successful with debt settlement on your own. In fact, you may experience quicker and better savings results by doing this yourself than by paying out to a service provider.

    Depending on the balances with each of the 3 creditors you listed and your ability to aggressively access the money necessary to fund settlement offers, you could have 2/3 wrapped up inside of 6 months. I realize this may sound unfathomable to you, but you should know that 2 of your 3 creditors often offer very favorable reductions with terms of 3 months to pay the reduced amount.

    You mentioned being behind and then further behind. When did you last make payments to each creditor?

    I appreciate your being sketchy with using the telephone to accomplish your settlement goal, but using a letter writing approach (especially ones advocated on some websites I have seen) can backfire. My point here is; The Phone Is Your Friend.

    Steve in his response has identified that CCSA is a middle man for whoever they ultimately will refer you to. There is a cost to being the middle man and that cost is passed on to you. Unfortunately, middle men (and women) are looking for the best return on their time and resources and are all too often going to lead you to something that benefits them the most, not you.

    You are approaching your predicament the right way by seeking out information and answers to questions. If you have not consulted with a bankruptcy attorney (or 2) you should. Understanding the details of all options available will help assure that you ultimately are making the right choice in handling your financial challenges.

  • Steve
    Thanks for the advice. I appreciate it. I would like to find a way to pay what I owe without declaring bankruptcy — perhaps by working out a settlement on my own.
    However, getting a lawyer who can help me figure this out might be the best route.


    • Jeff,

      Just be aware that even working out a settlement on your own will still have all those negative aspects of debt settlement. Are you prepared to trash your credit and go into collections and face being sued to settle your debt?


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