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How Does a Debt Management Plan Work?

PostPosted:Mon May 17, 2010 12:29 pm
by tonyparker05
A debt management plan is an informal debt management arrangement between your creditors and yourself. You agree to pay what you can reasonably afford towards the debts you owe. This agreement is usually kept in place until the debts are paid off in full. In return your creditors may agree to freeze interest and other charges provided you stick to the agreement.

The arrangement process is handled by a debt management company. They work with you to put together your proposal to your creditors. After they send the DMP proposal to your creditors, they will deal with the responses received. Your creditors may accept your proposal, reject it, or propose changes. The debt management company will discuss any proposed changes with you so that you may decide whether to accept them or not. An example of a potential modification might be if a creditor believes you have allowed too much or too little to cover your household expenses.

Once agreement has been reached with your creditors you will make a single monthly payment to the debt management company. They will distribute that DMP payment to your creditors on your behalf, and deal with any correspondence or calls.

Fees and Costs

Bright Oak Debt Management, like other debt management companies, retains the first month’s payment to cover the costs of negotiating the agreement with your creditors.

Thereafter a management fee of 15% of future payments would be charged to cover the costs of receiving your payment, paying your creditors, and any contact with you and your creditors.

Summary of Debt Management Advantages

* Creditor pressure is removed.
* No need to deal with collections letters and calls.
* A reduced monthly payment giving you financial breathing space.
* Your regular living expenses are taken into account, ensuring your personal and family needs are covered.
* Homeowners remain in their home provided any mortgage payments are kept up.
* Avoids the stigma of bankruptcy.
* Generally no need to inform an employer.
* Interest and charges may be stopped or reduced.

Some Potential Disadvantages

* Debt management reduced monthly payments will extend the period taken to repay your debts.
* Charges by the debt management company may extend the period taken to repay your debts.
* As an informal agreement it’s possible your debt management creditors could later change their mind about an agreement.
* Some creditors may wish to make a note on your credit history that you have entered into a debt management plan.