How to Get Debt Relief in Oklahoma
Sarah Edwards | August 08, 2023
Edited by Hannah Locklear
Summary: If you're struggling with debt in Oklahoma, SoloSuit can help you find the relief you need.
It's easy to get into debt. It's harder to get yourself out. If you're a resident of Oklahoma, you can take advantage of laws and regulations that protect you from aggressive debt collectors. You also have access to debt relief options that can help you get your finances back on track and put you on a trajectory to repair your credit.
Oklahoma debt collection laws can protect you
First, it's important to understand the statute of limitations for debt in Oklahoma. This is the time period in which a creditor or debt collection agency can sue someone for debt. The length of time can vary depending on the type of debt you owe. Here are the limitations based on common debt types:
Statute of Limitations on Debt in Oklahoma
|Deadline in Years
This means that medical, credit card, auto loan, and student loan debt all have a statute of limitations of just five years. After this period expires, debt collectors are no longer legally allowed to contact you regarding your debt, nor can your original lender sue you to collect. Along with Oklahoma state laws, the federal government has rules and regulations to help protect consumers.
Know your rights under the FDCPA
Frequent phone calls from debt collectors can be a hassle, especially if they contact you on your cell or work line. Knowing your rights can also protect you from crazy debt collectors.
Debt collection agencies are regulated by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, which prohibits debt collectors from:
- Calling you before 8:00 AM or after 9:00 PM
- Calling you more than once per day
- Continuing to pursue you after a cease-and-desist notice
- Speaking with your friends regarding your debt
- Declining to validate your debt
If a debt collector violates these terms, you can report them to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) using their online platform or by calling 877-382-4357. You can also report the collector to the Consumer Financial Protection Board (CFPB) through their website or by calling 855-411-2372.
Get credit counseling
The National Foundation for Credit Counseling can point you toward other agencies that will assist you with debt collectors and help you develop better financial habits. Some of these services are available for free, though some specialized services may come at a cost.
Take advantage of Oklahoma debt relief programs
The state of Oklahoma provides debt relief and other programs to help those struggling to manage their finances. These programs include:
Not all of these programs can provide direct assistance with your debt, but they can provide valuable financial help that can get you back on your feet and allow you to set a budget that prevents you from getting further into debt.
Outside of these Oklahoma services, you might consider several other ways of handling your outstanding debt, including debt consolidation, refinancing, balance transfer credit cards, and even bankruptcy. Now, let's break each one of these method down a little bit further.
Consolidate your Oklahoma debt
With debt consolidation, you roll multiple debts together into one unified account. The advantages are simple:
- You may qualify for a lower interest rate
- You may extend your loan term, making it easier to make monthly payments
However, if you don't have good credit, you may have a harder time obtaining a favorable loan term or interest rate. Additionally, extending your loan term often means you'll spend more money on interest in the long run, so be sure that you're actually saving money by pursuing these options.
Consider refinancing options
Refinancing means you'll replace your existing loan with a new one. Ideally, this means you'll replace your current loan with a loan that offers a better interest rate or smaller payments.
However, like debt consolidation, your credit will play a major factor in your eligibility for the best terms. And any time you extend your loan, you risk paying more because of the increased interest.
Use a balance transfer card
Some credit card companies offer a low-interest introductory period for new users. If you have good credit, you can open a credit card account, then transfer your debt to this low-interest credit card. Make sure that you're able to pay off this credit card debt before the introductory period expires. Otherwise, you'll only compound your debt.
How to file for bankruptcy in Oklahoma
As a last resort, consider filing for bankruptcy. Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows you to keep your assets but creates a three-to-five-year plan for you to repay your debts. In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your assets are sold to repay your debts.
For assistance in this process, the Northern District of Oklahoma and the Oklahoma Bar Association offer a list of attorneys who can help you navigate the bankruptcy process and see if you qualify.
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