Houston Business Debt Relief Lawyers: Negotiating Debt Settlements and Restructuring to Avoid Bankruptcy
Running a business is tough, especially when it comes to managing finances and dealing with debt. When debts start piling up, it can feel totally overwhelming. You may be missing payments, getting calls from creditors, or worried about bankruptcy. But working with an experienced Houston debt relief lawyer can help you take control of your business‘s debt and find solutions to avoid bankruptcy.In this article, we’ll discuss how a Houston debt settlement attorney can help restructure and negotiate your business debt. We’ll also talk about specific laws and legal strategies that a skilled lawyer can use to defend your business.
How Can a Houston Debt Relief Lawyer Help?
A business debt relief lawyer has extensive experience negotiating with creditors to reduce or restructure your debt. They act as your representative to work out settlements and alternative repayment plans that take the pressure off your business.Here are some of the ways a Houston debt attorney can help:
- Negotiate lower payoff amounts – Your lawyer can often negotiate with creditors to reduce the total amount you owe. This may involve getting late fees, interest, and other charges removed from the balance.
- Work out alternative repayment plans – Instead of paying a lump sum, your lawyer can try to work out installment plans or delayed payment schedules that are more affordable.
- Consolidate multiple debts – Your attorney may be able to work with creditors to consolidate multiple debts into one manageable payment.
- Reduce or remove interest rates – Your lawyer can negotiate to eliminate any additional interest or reduce very high interest rates that are crushing your business.
- Stop collection calls and lawsuits – Once you hire a lawyer, creditors usually have to deal directly with your attorney and stop harassing you for payments.
- Defend against lawsuits – If any creditors do sue your business, your lawyer can handle the litigation and try to get the cases dismissed or resolved favorably.
- Avoid bankruptcy – In many cases, a good debt settlement lawyer can resolve your debt situation without having to go through bankruptcy proceedings.
What Laws & Strategies Can Debt Relief Lawyers Use?
Business debt relief lawyers have a variety of laws and legal strategies they can use to defend your company against creditors and resolve debts in your favor. Here are some examples:
- Statute of limitations – Debt relief lawyers can determine if the statute of limitations has expired on any of your debts, which may prevent creditors from suing you to collect.
- Improper service of process – If a creditor sues you, lawyers look closely to ensure you were properly served notice of the lawsuit. Any defects can get the case dismissed.
- FDCPA violations – Debt collectors must follow fair practices under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Violations provide leverage to get debts reduced or eliminated.
- Breach of contract claims – If a creditor violates terms of your original credit agreement, that breach of contract can be used to negotiate a favorable settlement.
- Usury law violations – There are laws against excessive interest rates. Proving usury violations can result in debt balances being lowered.
- Collateral challenges – If creditors threaten to seize collateral like real estate or equipment, your lawyer can often fight it if the collateral basis is weak.
- Bankruptcy threats – Threatening to file Chapter 7 or Chapter 11 bankruptcy often brings creditors to the table to negotiate debt relief rather than face discharge of debt in court.
Step-by-Step Process for Debt Relief
So how does the debt relief process work if you hire a Houston business debt lawyer? Here is a general step-by-step overview:
- Consultation – Set up an initial consult with a debt relief attorney to discuss your situation and goals. Bring documentation of all debts.
- Review debts – The lawyer will thoroughly review your debts, creditors, your assets, collateral held, your payment history, etc.
- Legal assessment – Based on the debt details, your attorney will explain your options and legal defenses that may be available.
- Representation agreement – If you want to move forward, you’ll sign a representation agreement authorizing the attorney to act on your behalf.
- Documentation – Your lawyer will prepare documentation of debts, assets, income, expenses, and other evidence needed for negotiations.
- Negotiation strategy – Your attorney will develop a negotiation strategy tailored to your specific debts and creditors. This drives settlement discussions.
- Settlement negotiations – Your lawyer contacts creditors, explains their representation of your business, and begins settlement negotiations. Calls, letters, and meetings with creditors ensue as your lawyer advocates for you.
- Settlement finalization – As deals are struck, your attorney finalizes and executes the new repayment terms, often with your reduced debts in writing from creditors.
- Case resolution – If any creditors sue and won’t settle, your lawyer defends through litigation. The goal is resolving all your business debt issues and lawsuits through the negotiated settlements.
Examples of Successful Debt Settlements
To give you an idea of what‘s possible, here are some examples of successful debt relief outcomes from real cases:
- Medical clinic debt – $1.2 million in debt to multiple creditors reduced to $200,000 paid over 5 years.
- Restaurant equipment leases – All late fees waived, principal reduced by 30%, and repayment term extended from 3 years to 10 years.
- Retail store loans – Interest rates dropped from 29% APR to 4% APR and principal reduced by 40% through settlement.
- Tech startup debt – 7 creditors consolidated debt into 1 loan at 3% APR over 12 years, with all collection calls stopped.
- Printing company credit lines – All interest eliminated and principal reduced by 20%, repayable over 8 years.