Start My Answer

How to Settle a Debt in South Carolina

Dena Standley | January 11, 2023

Dena Standley
Legal Expert, Paralegal
Dena Standley, BA

Dena Standley is a seasoned paralegal with more than 20 years of experience in legal research and writing, having received a certification as a Legal Assistant/Paralegal from Southern Technical College.

Edited by Hannah Locklear

Hannah Locklear
Editor at SoloSuit
Hannah Locklear, BA

Hannah Locklear is SoloSuit’s Marketing and Impact Manager. With an educational background in Linguistics, Spanish, and International Development from Brigham Young University, Hannah has also worked as a legal support specialist for several years.

How it feels to settle a debt in South Carolina ^^

Summary: If you’ve been sued for a debt in South Carolina, you can still settle the debt before going to court. You should respond to the lawsuit, send a settlement offer, and get the settlement agreement in writing. Debt settlement will get your case dismissed and give you a financial restart. SoloSettle can help you with all these steps and more.

Many South Carolina citizens have avoided filing for bankruptcy through debt settlement. Creditors and debt collectors who accept debt settlement often want to close delinquent accounts to improve their portfolios. Others want to get a small margin of the revenue rather than lose the whole amount.

Consider debt settlement if you still have an income stream. You can plan to save around 60–80% of your entire debt amount. Afterward, approach the creditor through a debt settlement company or on your own and offer to pay off the debt.

In this article, we will cover how to help you get the best settlement deal in South Carolina.

Follow these 3 steps to settle a debt in South Carolina

Compared to other debt management options, debt settlement allows you to get out of debt faster. Working with a debt settlement company, it usually takes around 2–3 years to settle all your debts, while debt consolidation takes 5–9 years. Debt settlement can also be a better option than bankruptcy because you decide how to manage your finances instead of the court doing it for you.

Follow these steps to settle your debts when you receive a debt collection lawsuit in South Carolina:

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

Below, we’ll explore each of these steps in detail. Don’t like reading? Check out this video instead:

1. Respond to the debt lawsuit with an Answer

Most South Carolina debt lawsuits end in a default judgment against the consumer because they ignore the lawsuit or do not know they must file an Answer with the court. As a defendant, filing your Answer is mandatory before beginning the settlement process.

When you get sued, you should receive a Complaint document that lists all the allegations the creditor or debt collector has made against you. You must respond to each claim in one of three ways: admit, deny or deny due to lack of knowledge. Lawyers recommend that you deny as many claims as possible to force the creditor or collector to prove their case.

Next, you must list your affirmative defenses. These are reasons you shouldn’t be held liable for the debt and can help your case if the creditor rejects your settlement offer. But more often than not, they would rather settle than go to court.

In South Carolina, you have 30 days to file an Answer to a debt lawsuit before you lose automatically by default judgment. With this kind of judgment, creditors and debt collectors can garnish your wages and seize your property. This is why it’s so important to respond to the case; it helps you avoid default and gives you time to work out a settlement agreement.

SoloSuit can help you draft and file a South Carolina Answer in minutes online.

Respond with SoloSuit

Get Started

2. Make an offer to start negotiations

Once you have filed the Answer and confirmed it is in the South Carolina court records, choose a settlement method that suits your needs. You can do it yourself, hire a debt settlement company, or work with SoloSettle (which combines the two methods). Consider the following factors as you decide:

  • Determine how much you can save to offer the creditor: Avoid approaching a creditor if you do not have a lump sum saved to make an offer. They could say no to the request when you ask for more time to make a down payment. If you lack funds, plan how to cut back on expenses until you save a considerable amount.

  • Calculate how much the creditor can accept: Approaching the creditor with an extremely low offer can cause them to say no to the settlement request. Begin with a reasonable amount that will pull them in. Generally, original creditors settle for 60–80% of the debt owed, while a collection agency that has inherited your debt can accept between 10–60%.

Once you’ve decided how much you can pay off, send a settlement offer to your creditor or debt collector. You might say something like:

“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.”

SoloSettle sends and receives debt settlement offers for you.

3. Get the settlement agreement in writing

Countless consumers have been deceived by debt collectors who promised to close accounts after a settlement agreement but failed to keep their promise. They often request you pay the balance so that they honor the commitment they made during negotiations. To avoid this trap, ensure you get the settlement agreement in writing.

The agreement should include your debt account details, the amount the creditor accepted as full payment, the promise made after making payments, and any relevant laws to make the agreement valid. Use this debt settlement sample as a guide to ensure you include all vital information.

Now, let’s look at an example of how to settle a debt in South Carolina:

Example: Danny, who lives in South Carolina, is being sued by Dynamic Recovery Solutions for an old credit card debt of $5,000. He uses SoloSuit to respond to the lawsuit and file an Answer before the 30-day deadline. Next, Danny takes a closer look at his finances to calculate how much he can afford to pay now to settle the debt. With SoloSettle, Danny sends his first settlement offer at 60% of the debt amount ($3,000). After a few rounds of negotiations, Dynamic Recovery Solutions accepts a settlement of 70% of the debt ($3,500). Danny saves some money and feels ready to start over financially.

SoloSettle is the easiest way to settle your debt

Solosettle is an exceptional debt settlement web app that allows you to send and receive settlement offers. It helps you negotiate and reach a settlement deal while controlling the narrative. The app provides a structured process that drafts the offers and protects you from deceitful debt collectors.

Additionally, SoloSettle documents contain all the legal language needed to protect your rights and make you sound professional. After reaching an agreement, the app takes care of documentation and ensures your financial information is safe.

Let's look at an another example to illustrate our discussion so far.

Example: Becky received a lawsuit letter from Clear Credit for an $11,340 debt. She knew going to court may cost her more if they won. She chose to work with SoloSettle because she wanted to control the negotiation process while being protected from them by experts. Becky began the negotiation at $6,300 (55%). After several counteroffers, Clear Credit accepted $8,000 (71%). SoloSettle took care of the settlement agreement, and Becky made the payments when they gave her the go-ahead.

South Carolina debt settlement laws can protect you

South Carolina debt settlement laws under the consumer protection code have saved consumers from being taken advantage of by debt settlement companies. These laws dictate how these companies should charge, run the business, and educate consumers about debt. For example, a debt settlement company should:

  • Be licensed, and the employees undergo continuous training (SC Code § 37-7-105)
  • Not charge exorbitant fees
  • Not make unreasonable promises, thus deceiving the consumer
  • Ensure they issue a contract for every agreement reached (SC Code § 37-7-110)
  • Be ready to pay the penalty if they violate any of the outlined laws (SC Code § 37-7-118)

If a debt settlement company you work with violates these laws, report them to the consumer protection division in your attorney general's office.

What’s the best debt settlement company?

The best debt settlement company will plan with you how to settle your debt and recommend actionable steps to take. Further, avoid debt settlement companies that ask for a down payment before they begin working on a debt settlement deal. Consider working with the following companies:

  • SoloSettle: This company helps you settle a debt of any amount, unlike most debt collection companies that require you to have more than $10,000 debt. SoloSuit is a trusted company that has helped over 7,000 consumers deal with their debt. You can be sure you are not being scammed.

  • Golden Financial Services: This company starts by helping you calculate how much you may pay for debt settlement. Afterward, the experts help you work on how to save the money you need.

  • Debt Quest USA: Although their primary service is debt consolidation, Debt Quest also offers debt settlement services if you request that option or fit the program.

  • New Era Debt Solution: The specialist gives you a free debt analysis before you can commit to any program. There is no obligation at this stage.

Choose the best method to contact the debt collector

No one likes communicating with debt collectors because they leave you frustrated or angry. Your conversation this time may be better because you are offering them money. To ensure you have a fruitful discussion, choose one of the following communication methods:

  • Phone: Having a debt settlement discussion over the phone can bear results within minutes, but you may not have proof of the discussion unless you record it. Fortunately, South Carolina is a one-party consent state (SC Code § 17-30-20), and you can record the conversation.

  • Mail: Negotiation over the mail ensures you get the agreement in writing. However, the process takes a long time because of the days in between delivery. Use certified mail to confirm receivership and hasten the communication.

  • Email: This method is the most favorable for debt settlement because it's quick, efficient, and leaves a paper trail. Once you get the correct email address, you will probably get the negotiations and the agreement signed in no time.

How to get debt relief in South Carolina

Debt consolidation and filing for bankruptcy are other ways of managing your debt apart from debt settlement. To help you choose the method that suits your debt situation, check out the following guide on how to get debt relief in South Carolina. In addition to helpful information, you'll find a list of organizations that can help you manage your debt.

SoloSuit can help you settle your debt

We are committed to helping every consumer become debt free by educating them on debt matters and using our products to communicate with debt collectors. SoloSettle can help you get a reasonable debt settlement deal and be on your way to reducing your debt burden. Contact us today for more information.

Check out this review from a real SoloSettle customer:

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.

SoloSettle really saved me a ton of time and heartburn and kept me from having to be my own lawyer in court.

FAQs on debt settlement in South Carolina

What percentage of debt should I offer to settle?

If you are negotiating with an original creditor, offer between 30–50%, and they will probably counter the offer. Generally, most creditors accept between 60–80% of the original debt. However, if a debt collection agency has bought the debt, then offer between 10–30%. They often buy the debt for a fraction of the original amount and will be willing to settle for less than the original creditor.

Is it better to pay off an account or settle it?

Paying off your debt in full is always better because it doesn't affect your credit score as a settled entry does. Moreover, it is better to have a settled entry on your credit report than an unpaid status.

How long can a creditor in South Carolina pursue a debt?

A creditor can pursue a debt until the statute of limitation has reached (the debt expires). For instance, a mortgage in South Carolina has a statute limitation of 20 years, a credit card is three years, an auto loan is six years, and medical debt is three years.

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