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Massive credit card debt is very hard to get out of regardless of the interest rates. Unless your income is strong and you have a large amount dedicated to pay down this debt, then it could han over you for many years to come. Making the monthly payments is good for your credit, but the balances go little to nowhere. You can contact each card company and ask then to put you on a hardship repayment plan. They would cancel the card and drop the rate down and eliminate the fees so that you can concentrate on paying the balances. Not all of them cooperate as much as you would hope, but if you start talking about filing bankruptcy, then they usually start to listen a bit more. Anyway...depending on what you have in CC debt and other ebt, a mountain of debt may eventually push you to bakruptcy. Its a last resort, but something to consider if you cannot get your arms around this. Let me know...
Eric: As mentioned, we have spoken to both CC companies without success. I cannot fathom what justifies their raising our interest rate? Are there legitimate negotiators who can interceed on our behalf. No, we do not have the ability to reduce these balances significantly, especially at these draconian interest rates. The cards are frozen and each time we make payments on the principal amounts they lower our limits so the cards are basically useless. Thus closing them under a payment plan makes sense. The CC companies in this case are Chase and Mastercard.
Typically you would be dealing with a custermer service rep and they are trined to tell you no and give you little info. THey are required to tell you why the interest rate was changed, if asked. You need to ask to be transferred to the hardship dept or an ombudsman dept so that you may try to resolve this. Advise them you wish to work it out and if cannot, then you will file bankruptcy. Its more of a bluff at this point, but the idea is to get to the right person for assistance. They CAN help and work it out, but you have to press and be deliberate. Any third party person or entity you could hire would do just that.
Save time and money and do it yourself. You can also Google for some ideas on what has worked in negotiating high credit card debt. I hesitate to even steer you in the direction of third party help. In most cases, its a waste of time and money. The only true third party help would be hiring an attorney to help.
Also...typically the only way they could break the interest rates and raise them like that would be because of a missed payment. But you need to ask specifically and they are required to tell you.
I was told by our Banker that through Clark Howard I could recieve references to a legitimate debt resolution specialist. Thus far you have not given me anything subsatntive. Thus I am not satisfied with your service. Please release my CC pmt.
If all you are looking for is a reference to a third party service or person to negotiate, then that is not a problem. I was merely advising you to make every effort yourself first before you go that route. In otherwords...why pay for something you can do yourself. It seems that you have already located a resource to find the appropriate help through Clark Howard's website. I wish you luck. Nothing has been paid on this until you accept the answers.