If I’m on Social Security, Should I Sign Up With Pacific Debt?


Dear Steve,

I contacted ClearOne Advantage yesterday; they connected me with Pacific Debt. They supposedly have a good rating with BBB.

The reviews are good also, but I am hesitant to do this. (with so many scam companies today) Should I go with this company? I could not pay my credit cards as I am on S.S., but I can’t let myself do that.



Dear Penny,

You’ve got a lot going on here. Thank you for asking me your question.

Because you are on Social Security, you should get more answers about your options. I like the people at HELPS, a non-profit law firm that assists seniors and the disabled. Attorney Eric Olsen is the guy in charge at HELPS.

You allude to the fact you might be judgment proof if you are on Social Security. In that case, you may not have to make any payments on your debts. However, that gives you some pause, and you “can’t let myself do that.”

I understand that position. But that is an emotional reaction to a mathematical problem. The fact you reached out to a debt relief company tells me you are feeling some money pressure.

Worrying about dealing with debt on a limited income can cause people to get misdirected. Today’s goal is not to repair your financial past but to fix the future.

An important question is if you can afford to live on your Social Security income. You might have been using credit cards to help make ends meet and fill a shortfall.

So now, if you enter a debt relief program, other than a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you will be trying to make ends meet on only Social Security minus some payment to a debt relief company. That makes no mathematical sense. You will have less money available each month.

Consider this, if you entered a program with Pacific Debt, ClearOne Advantage, or any other settlement company and only paid a portion of what you owe, how can you justify that? Why would it be better to pay your creditors no longer and instead pay a debt relief company?

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Let’s approach this in stages.

First, you need to identify the problem you are trying to solve. For example, is it not enough money each month? Too much debt?

Then we can develop a plan of action using information and facts to create a plan to get you there.

Finally, you execute the plan to accomplish logical goals best using a well-planned strategy.

This approach will give you the best opportunity for a happy outcome.

I think you should talk to HELPS and find out what the reality is regarding your debt and Social Security.

You should find a reasonable local bankruptcy attorney and have a free discussion about what bankruptcy would mean for you. Bankruptcy is the fastest way to get a fresh start for the least amount of money.

Then you should consider all this new information and consider what Pacific Debt was suggesting.

If you are still confused and need to talk this all through with someone, I would suggest my debt coach friend Damon Day.


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

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Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

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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.
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6 thoughts on “If I’m on Social Security, Should I Sign Up With Pacific Debt?”

  1. When a person receiving Social Security and or a pension contacts a debt management company, like Pacific Debt or any number of other such companies they should be told that their income is protected. Because their income is protected they don’t need to pay debt they can’t afford to pay. They should be told their income is protected and available for their needs like food, medicine and housing. If they are not told this they are not being told the most important fact they should know. That company is not being truthful. The company does not have the best interest of the senior. I just got off the phone with a senior receiving $956 a month in Social Security. She pays $500 in rent but enrolled in a debt management company and has been paying them $250 per month for the last four months, leaving her $200 to live on. When she enrolled with this debt management company she was never told the basic fact that her income was protected. Instead out of fear she has been paying them, being placed in utter poverty. These companies may have perfect BBB ratings and reviews but their true nature is revealed if they withhold the most basic fact from a senior- that the seniors’ income is protected and safe.

      • I HAVE been paying my Capital One cards, one has less than $100.00 balance (Walmart) I also pay my Care Credit which is for medical/pharmacy. and the Amazon. If I pay all the others I will run out of money by end of month and some months on S.S. is 5 weeks.


        • The math says, stop paying your creditors and get mentally prepared for what might come next. Please talk to the folks at HELPS. They are inexpensive and will provide tremendous relief.


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