It seems that everytime I turn on the television, I see a commercial for “debt settlement” companies which promise to help you cut interest rates on credit cards, reduce the balance and consolidate payments. What they don’t tell you is that they charge substantial fees for these services (that’s how they afford such a large advertising budget) and that participation by your creditors is completely voluntary. It seems that frequently when i’m in court, somebody there has a motion for summary judgment pending against them on a purported “settled debt” and they just don’t understand why because they say ” I sent the payment to the debt settlement company.” The creditors are still free to pursue their legal remedies on the purported “settled debt” and they frequently do, which can lead to wage garnishment and judgment liens being placed on your property. Before you decide to invest significant time and money into a “debt settlement” program, speak to a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney to consider other options.