Start My Answer

How to Settle a Debt in Rhode Island

Dena Standley | December 27, 2022

When you settle your debt in Rhode Island ^^

Summary: Having an outstanding debt in Rhode Island is not the end of the world. Debt settlement can help you pay off the most urgent debts and help you manage your financial situation, getting you back on track for a better financial future. If you’ve been sued for debt in Rhode Island, you can still settle the debt with these three steps: 1) respond to the lawsuit with an Answer, 2) make a settlement offer, and 3) get the agreement in writing. SoloSettle can help you settle your Rhode Island debt fast and efficiently.

Rhode Island citizens have multiple debt settlement companies that can help consumers get out of debt. Legitimate companies use proven methods that are legal and supported by the government. They operate under strict laws to ensure consumers are not scammed.

When you choose debt settlement to manage your debts, you initiate contact with the creditor and offer to pay a small percentage of what you owe. After they respond with a counteroffer, you can increase your offer by a small margin and wait for their response. Once an agreement is reached and paid off, they will report the debt as settled to the credit reporting agencies and dismiss any lawsuits against you.

In this article, we will give you detailed information on how to go about the debt settlement process in Rhode Island and what you need to know to ensure the entire process is successful and adheres to state debt settlement laws.

Follow these 3 steps to settle a debt in Rhode Island

Delinquent accounts are a huge setback for creditors. Often, they would rather settle for less than lose all their money. If you've missed payments for several months, this is the perfect opportunity to make a settlement offer.

However, if you've received a lawsuit, you may have no option but to initiate a settlement. The alternative can mean the creditor receiving authorization to garnish your wages or access to your bank account. Follow these steps to avoid such an outcome:

  1. Respond to the debt lawsuit with an Answer.
  2. Make a settlement offer to start negotiations.
  3. Get the settlement agreement in writing.

Below, we’ll break down each of these three steps in detail. If you don’t like reading, you can watch this video to learn more instead:

1. Respond to the debt lawsuit with an Answer

Filing an Answer informs the court that you are aware of the lawsuit and are ready to appear in court to defend yourself. If you fail to send an Answer, the court continues with the case and may decide in favor of the creditor or debt collector. Hence, file the Answer before initiating the negotiation process.

According to Rhode Island laws (RI Gen L § 33-23-1), you have 20 days to file an Answer, or you may lose the case automatically when a default judgment is entered against you. This can lead to wage garnishment and seizure of your property, so it’s very important to respond on time.

To draft your Answer, respond to each of the allegations listed against you in the Complaint document. In Rhode Island, you can use three ways to respond: admit, dent, or deny for lack of knowledge. As a precaution, do not admit to all the allegations, even if they are true. Force the creditor or collector to prove their case in court.

Next, list your affirmative defenses. The defenses you give can help your case if the creditor wants to continue with the case in court. SoloSuit’s Answer document lightens the task for you by drafting your Answer for you. You can customize the Answer to apply to your case and debt situation.

Responding to your debt lawsuit will buy you time to reach out about settling the debt.

Respond with SoloSuit

Get Started

2. Make a settlement offer to start negotiations

Once you have filed the Answer and confirmed receivership, choose the most favorable method to negotiate for a settlement. The do-it-yourself approach is good if you have excellent negotiation skills, while hiring a debt settlement company ensures you do everything exceptionally well with the help of experts. Factors to consider before sending an offer are:

  • How much can you afford to pay off? Avoid making a settlement offer if you don’t have enough money saved for negotiations. The creditor may not take you seriously if you have to ask for time to get the money. Cut back on expenses for several months if you need to save enough money to settle the debt.

  • How much will the creditor or collector accept? If you give a creditor an extremely low settlement amount, they are likely to reject it and would rather try their chances in court. Ideally, an original creditor accepts between 60–80% of the original debt, while a debt collection agency that bought the debt might take between 10–60%. A settlement company can give you the best percentage for negotiations.

Taking all the above into consideration, the average consumer reaches a debt settlement agreement of 50% of the original debt value when working with a debt settlement company.

In our experience, a 50% settlement isn’t always easy to get. Try sending your first offer at around 60%. You might say something along these lines:

“I see you’re suing me for [$__] for [case number]. I don’t have that kind of money and I don’t agree with the amount. But I do have [$__] that I can pay within 30 days to settle the debt in full. Let me know if you accept.”

You may go through several rounds of counter offers before you reach an agreement.

If you can’t afford to pay off a large percentage of the debt right now, you can explain your financial situation to the creditor or collector. If you can demonstrate financial hardship, they will likely work with you.

SoloSettle negotiates a settlement for you.

3. Get the settlement agreement in writing

When you have reached an agreement, getting the settlement agreement in writing locks in the deal. Some debt collectors are known to scam you, accepting an offer verbally and then sneaking behind your back in court to continue with the case. Without a written agreement, the creditor may be tempted to break their promise and ask you to pay the balance so that they can withdraw the court case or update your credit report.

To remain on top of the negotiation process, always ask for a written settlement agreement. If the debt collector refuses, do not give them your money until you have agreed on terms and have it in writing. Here’s a debt settlement example, so you know what to look for.

SoloSettle is the easiest way to settle your debt

SoloSettle is a web tool for consumers needing help with the entire debt settlement process. Generally, it helps you reach a settlement agreement with creditors on your terms. The tool provides a structured process that allows you to send and receive offers from debt collectors.

Additionally, it drafts the offers for you, protecting you from dishonest collectors. The legal language included also protects your rights, and the creditor will be reluctant to bully you into accepting their demands. Once you reach an agreement, SoloSettle will ensure you get a settlement agreement that includes all the vital information.

Let's look at a real-life scenario.

Example: Kelly had a credit card debt of $17,200 with HarborOne Bank. He received a lawsuit letter from them and preferred to settle the debt out of court. As Kelly searched online, he found SoloSettle, which helped him make an offer using their professional and customizable documents. After several negotiations, he agreed to pay $10,320 (60%). SoloSettle helped Kelly manage the paperwork and pay off the debt, keeping his financial information private and safe.

Rhode Island debt settlement laws can protect you

Debt settlement laws and Rhode Island Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prevent debt management companies from taking advantage of distressed consumers looking for a way out of debt. It contains laws that control how much they can charge, the promises they can make, and how to handle consumers respectfully. For example, under the fees and charges section (RI Gen L § 19-14.8-23), the guidelines state that debt settlement companies should not:

  • Receive any payment until they enter into a signed contract with the debtor
  • Charge more than $50 as a consultation fee
  • Charge a monthly fee exceeding $10
  • Charge upfront fees without initiating a settlement deal with the creditor

If the settlement company you're working with violates these laws, report them to the consumer protection division in the attorney general's office.

Additionally, the Federal Trade Commission has recently amended the Telemarketing Sales Rule to expand debt settlement regulations to all debt relief organizations and companies. All 50 states, including Rhode Island, are governed by this Rule as it relates to debt settlement practice.

Under the new Rule, any company that provides debt relief services, namely debt settlement companies, cannot:

  • Charge upfront fees. Debt settlement companies cannot collect any fees from a consumer before the debt has been effectively settled or otherwise resolved.
  • Fail to disclose certain information about its services before a consumer enrolls in the program. This includes how much the service costs, how long it takes to see results, how much money must be saved before a settlement offer is made, consequences that may occur if the consumer fails to make payments on time, customer’s rights, and other important terms.
  • Misrepresent their services. No false or unsubstantiated claims can be made regarding a debt settlement company’s services.

What’s the best debt settlement company?

When a debt settlement company gives you a deal that’s too good to be true, you should not trust them as the best company to work with. A legitimate company will not lie to you about your debt situation and will implement a plan to get you out of debt before asking for money. Consider working with the following settlement companies:

  • SoloSettle: This company allows you to settle a debt of any amount and does not require higher debt values like other debt settlement companies. In addition, it has legal defenses built into the app that you can use to block lawsuits if the creditor threatens you with one.

  • National debt Relief: This company gives you a free savings estimate and does not charge upfront fees or force you to work with them after assessing your situation at no cost.

  • This organization has been in business for over forty-five years and has a record of helping consumers become debt free without filing for bankruptcy.

  • New Era Debt Solutions: The experts here give you a free debt analysis and recommend the most favorable plan to get you out of debt quickly.

Choose the best method to contact the debt collector

Part of the debt settlement process involves communicating with the creditor until you come up with an offer that pleases both parties. To achieve this, use a method you are comfortable with and one that will give you results. Choose one of these methods to communicate with creditors.

  • Phone: A conversation over the phone can get you a settlement deal, but you won't have proof of the interaction unless you record the conversation. The chances of the creditor going back on their word is high. Luckily, Rhode Island is a one-party consent state, meaning you can legally record the phone conversation (RI Gen L § 11-35-21).

  • Mail: This method ensures you have a paper trail of the negotiation process. However, the process takes longer unless both parties use certified mail to hasten the process.

  • Email: Most debt settlement companies prefer this method because it instantly yields results. You can have a settlement deal within minutes or hours if you use the correct email.

How to get debt relief in Rhode Island

You can experience debt relief using three main methods; debt settlement, consolidation, and bankruptcy. It is vital to learn more about the other two methods before deciding how you will manage your debt. The following article will give you all the information you need on debt relief in Rhode Island. You'll also find a list of organizations that can help.

SoloSettle can help you settle your debt

Helping consumers become debt free is our ultimate goal at SoloSuit.

SoloSettle, powered by SoloSuit, is a tech-driven debt settlement solution that empowers you to settle your debt on your own in a few simple steps.

SoloSettle’s software sends and receives settlement offers for you. SoloSettle takes care of all communications with the creditor or debt collector, and once an agreement is reached, manages the documentation and payment for you.

Here are some reasons that SoloSettle is different from other debt settlement companies:

  • You can settle debts of any size with SoloSettle. Many debt settlement companies require you to have a debt over $15k.
  • SoloSettle actively attempts to settle your debt, whereas many debt settlement companies take a more passive role, waiting for settlement offers to come to them.
  • SoloSettle is offered by SoloSuit, a trusted brand and a legitimate company. Many traditional debt settlement companies are actual scams.
  • SoloSettle has legal defense built in with SoloSuit. While settling, you can use SoloSuit to block lawsuits if you need. Most debt settlement companies don’t provide legal defense; if you’re sued for a debt you are on your own.

If you’re still not convinced, this review from a real SoloSettle customer might change your mind:

“I'm very thankful for SoloSettle. Having a third party negotiate the settlement was instrumental in resolving this case and saved me from two giant headaches: 1) I didn't have to deal with the plaintiff's lawyer and 2) I didn't have to go to court. I also love that the payment was processed through SoloSettle. I was nervous about sharing my personal financial data with the other side, but SoloSettle protected that for me. I hope I never get sued again, but if I do, I would use SoloSettle again in a heartbeat.”

Settle your debt in Rhode Island with SoloSettle’s help.

FAQs on debt settlement in Rhode Island

What should I include in a debt settlement agreement?

  • Your details as they appear on the debt account
  • How much you settled on paying
  • The promise the creditor made in exchange for the payment
  • Citation of relevant laws
  • Signature of both parties

How do I become debt free with debt settlement in Rhode Island?

Debt settlement helps you become debt free by enabling you to pay off a debt for less than you originally owed. For some consumers, coming up with the entire amount may be challenging, and settlement is the only way out. Additionally, debt settlement can help you save money for paying other debts.

Are debt settlement companies in Rhode Island legitimate?

Not all debt settlement companies are legitimate. Some want to scam you for the little money you have left. Others make extreme promises to convince you to deposit the money then they disappear after you make several payments. Ensure you investigate any company you want to hire for settlement online.

What is SoloSuit?

SoloSuit makes it easy to fight debt collectors.

You can use SoloSuit to respond to a debt lawsuit, to send letters to collectors, and even to settle a debt.

SoloSuit's Answer service is a step-by-step web-app that asks you all the necessary questions to complete your Answer. Upon completion, we'll have an attorney review your document and we'll file it for you.

>>Read the FastCompany article: Debt Lawsuits Are Complicated: This Website Makes Them Simpler To Navigate

>>Read the NPR story on SoloSuit. (We can help you in all 50 states.)

How to answer a summons for debt collection in your state

Here's a list of guides for other states.

All 50 states.

Guides on how to beat every debt collector

Being sued by a different debt collector? Were making guides on how to beat each one.

We have answers

Join our community of over 40,000 people.

You can ask your questions on the SoloSuit forum and the community will help you out. Whether you need help now are are just look for support, we're here for you.

Get Started

Win against credit card companies

Is your credit card company suing you? Learn how you can beat each one.

Going to Court for Credit Card Debt — Key Tips

How to Negotiate Credit Card Debts

How to Settle a Credit Card Debt Lawsuit — Ultimate Guide

Get answers to these FAQs

Need more info on statutes of limitations? Read our 50-state guide.

Why do debt collectors block their phone numbers?

How long do debt collectors take to respond to debt validation letters?

What are the biggest debt collector companies in the US?

Is Zombie Debt Still a Problem in 2019?

SoloSuit FAQ

If a car is repossessed, do I still owe the debt?

Is Portfolio Recovery Associates Legit?

Is There a Judgment Against Me Without my Knowledge?

Should I File Bankruptcy Before or After a Judgment?

What is a default judgment?— What do I do?

Summoned to Court for Medical Bills — What Do I Do?

What Happens If Someone Sues You and You Have No Money?

What Happens If You Never Answer Debt Collectors?

What Happens When a Debt Is Sold to a Collection Agency

What is a Stipulated Judgment?

What is the Deadline for a Defendants Answer to Avoid a Default Judgment?

Can a Judgement Creditor Take my Car?

Can I Settle a Debt After Being Served?

Can I Stop Wage Garnishment?

Can You Appeal a Default Judgement?

Do I Need a Debt Collection Defense Attorney?

Do I Need a Payday Loans Lawyer?

Do student loans go away after 7 years? — Student Loan Debt Guide

Am I Responsible for My Spouses Medical Debt?

Should I Marry Someone With Debt?

Can a Debt Collector Leave a Voicemail?

How Does Debt Assignment Work?

What Happens If a Defendant Does Not Pay a Judgment?

How Does Debt Assignment Work?

Can You Serve Someone with a Collections Lawsuit at Their Work?

What Is a Warrant in Debt?

How Many Times Can a Judgment be Renewed in Oklahoma?

Can an Eviction Be Reversed?

Does Debt Consolidation Have Risks?

What Happens If You Avoid Getting Served Court Papers?

Does Student Debt Die With You?

Can Debt Collectors Call You at Work in Texas?

How Much Do You Have to Be in Debt to File for Chapter 7?

What Is the Statute of Limitations on Debt in Washington?

How Long Does a Judgment Last?

Can Private Disability Payments Be Garnished?

Can Debt Collectors Call From Local Numbers?

Does the Fair Credit Reporting Act Work in Florida?

The Truth: Should You Never Pay a Debt Collection Agency?

Should You Communicate with a Debt Collector in Writing or by Telephone?

Do I Need a Debt Negotiator?

What Happens After a Motion for Default Is Filed?

Can a Process Server Leave a Summons Taped to My Door?

Learn More With These Additional Resources:

Need help managing your finances? Check out these resources.

How to Make a Debt Validation Letter - The Ultimate Guide

How to Make a Motion to Compel Arbitration Without an Attorney

How to Stop Wage Garnishment — Everything You Need to Know

How to File an FDCPA Complaint Against Your Debt Collector (Ultimate Guide)

Defending Yourself in Court Against a Debt Collector

Tips on you can to file an FDCPA lawsuit against a debt collection agency

Advice on how to answer a summons for debt collection.

Effective strategies for how to get back on track after a debt lawsuit

New Hampshire Statute of Limitations on Debt

Sample Cease and Desist Letter Against Debt Collectors

The Ultimate Guide to Responding to a Debt Collection Lawsuit in Utah

West Virginia Statute of Limitations on Debt

What debt collectors cannot do — FDCPA explained

Defending Yourself in Court Against Debt Collector

How to Liquidate Debt

Arkansas Statute of Limitations on Debt

Youre Drowning in Debt — Heres How to Swim

Help! Im Being Sued by My Debt Collector

How to Make a Motion to Vacate Judgment

How to Answer Summons for Debt Collection in Vermont

North Dakota Statute of Limitations on Debt

ClearPoint Debt Management Review

Indiana Statute of Limitations on Debt

Oregon Eviction Laws - What They Say

CuraDebt Debt Settlement Review

How to Write a Re-Aging Debt Letter

How to Appear in Court by Phone

How to Use the Doctrine of Unclean Hands

Debt Consolidation in Eugene, Oregon

Summoned to Court for Medical Bills? What to Do Next

How to Make a Debt Settlement Agreement

Received a 3-Day Eviction Notice? Heres What to Do

How to Answer a Lawsuit for Debt Collection

Tips for Leaving the Country With Unpaid Credit Card Debt

Kansas Statute of Limitations on Debt Collection

How to File in Small Claims Court in Iowa

How to File a Civil Answer in Kings County Supreme Court

Roseland Associates Debt Consolidation Review

How to Stop a Garnishment

Debt Eraser Review

Do Debt Collectors Ever Give Up?

Can They Garnish Your Wages for Credit Card Debt?

How Often Do Credit Card Companies Sue for Non-Payment?

How Long Does a Judgement Last?

​​How Long Before a Creditor Can Garnish Wages?

How to Beat a Bill Collector in Court

Not sued yet?

Use our Debt Validation Letter.

Out Debt Validation Letter is the best way to respond to a collection letter. Many debt collectors will simply give up after receiving it.

Let's Do It

It only takes 15 minutes.

And 50% of our customers' cases have been dismissed in the past.

"Finding yourself on the wrong side of the law unexpectedly is kinda scary. I started researching on YouTube and found SoloSuit's channel. The videos were so helpful, easy to understand and encouraging. When I reached out to SoloSuit they were on it. Very professional, impeccably prompt. Thanks for the service!" - Heather

Get Started