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Every state in the United States has its fair share of consumers who are unfortunately in debt. Being new and inexperienced with credit card usage and spending beyond one’s means can easily lead to this problem. In the state of Indiana, in spite of its residents having an average credit score of 726, this is no exception. Although consumers who live in Indiana have on average a considerable better credit score than the national average of only 689, there are still those who struggle with debt and are in need of help in the form of debt relief. Here is a review of debt relief programs in Indiana.

The average amount of credit debt Indiana residents have is $4,577. This is also better than the national average, which comes in at $4,879 per borrower. Likewise, the home ownership percentage in the state is also better at 74.9, meaning that only one quarter of Indiana residents do not own homes. However, as of December 2013, the unemployment rate was 7.3 percent, making the state the 32nd worst in the country in that regard.

Debt Relief Companies

Finding the right debt relief company is very important. Never go with one that claims to bring fast results because those are probably scams that will give you more headaches than relief. Research a few different debt relief companies and ensure that they are accredited by the Better Business Bureau. It’s important to note that a truly reputable company will let you know up front that there is no “quick fix” for settling your debt and that it will charge a fee for its services, usually a percentage of your total settled debt once it has successfully delivered debt settlement services to you.

Debt Settlement

There are a number of debt relief programs available to consumers in Indiana. One of the best services for settling your debt with your creditors once and for all is debt settlement. It is the best option for consumers who are heavily in debt and can foresee no other way to pay back their debt short of filing for bankruptcy, which should only be used as a last resort. With debt settlement, your total amount of debt is lowered, usually with the omission of the interest, so that you can make one lump sum payment to pay it back.

Debt Consolidation

Another option available in Indiana is debt consolidation. This is a service in which you are paired with a professional consolidator who will negotiate with your creditors after thoroughly examining your bills and any pertinent documents related to your debt. The consolidator will devise a plan for consolidating all of your debts into one single payment, making it less of a burden for you to pay back what you owe. There are also debt consolidation loans that can make it easier for you to pay back your creditors.

Credit Counseling

It is not uncommon for consumers in Indiana who owe debt to be directed to a service known as credit counseling. In general, credit counseling agencies are nonprofits that will pair you up with a counselor who will work with you and go over your finances. The counselor can help you by creating a debt management plan, also known as a DMP, that essentially lowers your total amount of debt so that you would be better able to pay it back. The counselor will send the DMP to your creditors to go over. In most cases, creditors are willing to accept the reduction of the total debt simply because they want to be paid back. Additionally, the counselor can negotiate with doctors if there is a medical debt.

Statute of Limitations in Indiana

It is important to note that there is a statute of limitations for which credit card companies can bring about legal proceedings against a consumer who owes them a debt. In general, this is relegated to the maximum amount of time that an individual has been delinquent on their payments. This varies depending on the state, but in Indiana, the statute of limitations is six years. In other words, if you are a consumer who owes a considerable amount of debt to your creditors and cannot pay it back within that time frame, the credit card company can no longer legally sue you for its money beyond that time.

Overall, you have plenty of options for debt relief in Indiana. It is important to explore all that are available to you so that you can be on the road to becoming debt free.