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I Owe Money and I Want to Set Up a Payment Plan With a Creditor. What Should I Do?

Authored By: Mobilization for Justice, Inc.

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I Owe Money and I Want to Set Up a Payment Plan With a Creditor. What Should I Do?


Most People Want To Pay Their Debts. But Is A Payment Plan The Right Answer For You?

There are a few important considerations before you decide to make a payment plan. Ask yourself the questions below:
  • Do you only have income and assets from government or disability benefits? If so, it is likely that none of that income or those assets can be taken by a debt collector to pay a private debt, for example, credit cards, cell phones or medical services. In other words, even if the company sues you and wins, it will not be able to take your benefits. Look at the list at the end of this fact sheet or seek assistance from an attorney or social worker to figure out if all of your income falls into this category. If you make payments with those monies voluntarily, you cannot get them back.
  • Can you really afford to make payments? If you think that you will not be able to pay for rent, food, utilities, medicine or other necessities, we suggest that you do not agree to make payments. You are often worse off if you agree to make payments and then fail to make them than you would be if you never agreed to make payments.
  • Is the debt the creditor is asking you to pay back your debt? Do not be pressured into paying a debt that you do not owe. If you are not sure if the debt is yours, ask the creditor for more information about the debt by writing a letter.
Last Review and Update: Dec 09, 2016

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