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Running a business can be extremely rewarding, but it also comes with many challenges. One of the biggest hurdles for many companies, especially small businesses, is managing debt. When cash flow gets tight, it can be tempting for business owners to rely heavily on loans, credit cards, and other financing to stay afloat. However, this strategy often backfires, leading to overwhelming debt obligations that become difficult or impossible to repay.If your Milwaukee business is facing more debt than it can handle, you have options. Consulting with an experienced business debt relief attorney can help you understand the legal solutions available to get your company back on track financially. This article provides an overview of debt relief strategies and professional guidance that Milwaukee business lawyers can offer if you’re ready to take control of your debt.

Common Causes of Business Debt

Before diving into debt relief options, it helps to understand what typically causes small and mid-sized companies to accumulate unhealthy amounts of debt. Some of the most common reasons include:

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  • Insufficient cash flow or reserves to cover operating expenses during slow periods
  • Investing too heavily in equipment, inventory, or other fixed assets
  • Poor budgeting and financial management practices
  • Unexpected emergencies like lawsuits or supply chain disruptions
  • Aggressive growth leading to overexpansion
  • Economic downturns and recessions lowering demand

Many of these factors are outside a business owner‘s control. But in some cases, debt stems from avoidable mistakes or lack of financial experience. Either way, once debt reaches unmanageable levels, it’s wise to seek help.

How Business Debt Relief Lawyers Can Help

Business debt relief attorneys have extensive experience guiding companies through debt reduction and restructuring. Their knowledge covers options within and outside of bankruptcy. Key ways they can help include:

  • Analyzing the full financial picture – They’ll review your business’s debts, assets, cash flow, and previous attempts to manage debt. This helps determine the most strategic options.
  • Negotiating with creditors – Your attorney can negotiate to lower interest rates, reduce total owed, or restructure payment plans. Creditors often see legal involvement as a sign you’re serious about addressing the debt.
  • Exploring non-bankruptcy alternatives – Debt relief lawyers know about options like debt consolidation loans, selling assets, or bringing in investors that could resolve debt out of court.
  • Navigating bankruptcy if needed – If non-bankruptcy options won’t work, business bankruptcy filings like Chapter 11 reorganization or Chapter 7 liquidation could provide a fresh start.
  • Overseeing implementation – They’ll manage details and communications with creditors to ensure the debt relief plan is properly executed.

The right business debt relief attorney provides both legal guidance and practical support throughout the process. Their involvement usually increases the chances of negotiating successfully with creditors.

Key Debt Relief Options for Businesses to Consider

If you hire a business debt relief lawyer in Milwaukee, they’ll explore all options and recommend a customized strategy based on your situation. Here is an overview of some common debt relief tools companies can use:

Debt Consolidation

With debt consolidation, multiple debts get combined into one larger loan, usually at a lower interest rate. This makes monthly payments and tracking easier. Debt consolidation loans can come from traditional lenders or online loan companies. A business debt relief lawyer can negotiate with lenders or creditors on your behalf to facilitate the most favorable consolidation loan terms possible.Pros:

  • Lower interest rate saves money
  • Consolidates multiple payments
  • May improve credit score over time by lowering credit utilization

Cons:

  • Closing costs and fees can be high
  • Miss just one payment and all debts default
  • Debts aren’t reduced, just restructured

Debt Settlement

Debt settlement involves negotiating directly with creditors to pay a lump-sum settlement that’s less than what you owe. Settlements typically range from 40% to 60% of the debt‘s face value. The creditor agrees to forgive the remaining balance, closing the account.Pros:

  • Settles debt for less than what’s owed
  • Creditors waive remaining balances
  • Avoids bankruptcy filing

Cons:

  • Damages credit until debts are settled
  • Debt relief companies can charge hefty fees
  • Savings depend on settlement terms

Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Chapter 11 allows businesses to restructure debts under court supervision. Owners keep assets and operations continue, but creditors must agree to repayment plans.Pros:

  • Stops collections and lawsuits
  • Cuts interest rates and payments
  • Discharges portions of what’s owed
  • Allows owners to retain control

Cons:

  • Complex process with court oversight
  • Expensive attorney fees
  • Debt payments continue for years
  • Significant damage to business credit

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

With Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a court-appointed trustee liquidates assets to pay creditors. Remaining debts are discharged, but operations must cease.Pros:

  • Wipes out eligible business debts
  • Stops collections and lawsuits
  • Allows a fresh start

Cons:

  • Closes the business permanently
  • Assets get sold off or surrendered
  • Very damaging to business credit

Questions to Ask Prospective Business Debt Relief Lawyers

If your Milwaukee business is struggling with more debts than it can handle, meeting with a business debt relief attorney should be a top priority. As you evaluate lawyers, here are some key questions to ask:

  • How many years have you been practicing business debt relief law? Look for at least 5-10 years experience.
  • Do you focus exclusively on business debt relief cases? Specialization is important.
  • How many Chapter 11 bankruptcies have you handled? Experience matters here.
  • What percentage of your clients’ debts do you typically get reduced or discharged? Track record is revealing.
  • What is your strategy for negotiating debt settlements with creditors? Get details.
  • What are your fees and what expenses will I pay throughout the process? Avoid surprises.
  • If bankruptcy looks likely, how can you help my business prepare? Planning is key.

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