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QUESTION 1:

I've heard that making one half of my minimum payment twice a month pays off my card debt quicker. Is that true?

ANSWER:

Yes. Interest accrues on a credit card everyday that you carry a balance on the card after the date payment is due on the card. By paying half of the minimum amount due before the date payment is due, interest is not accruing on the amount you paid. By paying twice a month, you are essentially reducing the interest you are paying in the long run and paying off the balance sooner.

QUESTION 2:

How do you lower your credit card payoff amount when you are in good standing with your credit card company? I tried and they said I have to be in default before they would negotiate with me.

ANSWER:

Often it's only those people that are deep in debt and have defaulted on a debt who are eligible to settle for less than the amount owed. By staying current with your creditors and making payments each month, you are protecting your credit and maintaining good credit. This will help you in the future when you want to obtain additional credit.

QUESTION 3:

My husband, an active duty Marine, and I have credit card debt. I'm concerned that our debt will affect my husband's military rank. How do we move forward?

ANSWER:

Because your husband is an active duty Marine, you and your husband may be entitled to exercise your rights under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). The SCRA provides numerous protections to members of the military engaged in active duty as well as the military member's spouse.

The SCRA allows active duty military personnel and their spouses to reduce interest rates on credit card debt to 6% during the time of active duty service as long as the debt was incurred prior to the military personnel entering active duty. In order to take advantage of this provision, you need to provide written notice to each credit card provider requesting the interest rate be reduced as required by the SCRA. You will also need to provide a copy of your husband's military orders calling him to active duty.

QUESTION 4:

Can debt collectors continue to try to collect a debt after the statute of limitations period has expired?

ANSWER:

The statute of limitations dictates the amount of time within which a lawsuit may be filed against a consumer to collect a debt. Each state has its own statute of limitations, and the time frame may be different if the contract creating the debt is in writing, is verbal, or if the debt is a credit card debt or other kind of debt. Statutes of limitation start running usually on an account's last activity. Statutes of limitation may also stop and can be revived, depending on state law, with a partial payment or a written promise to repay the debt. In addition, the statute of limitations is often suspended if a consumer leaves the state, resides within the state under an assumed name, or is incarcerated.

According to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), when the statute of limitations has expired, a collector may continue to request payment on the debt, but the collector cannot threaten the consumer with legal action because the collector can no longer sue the consumer for the debt.