HELPS in THREE MINUTES
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do you have old debt you can't afford to pay? WE CAN HELP.

We'll contact you to discuss your situation.

Thank you for your information.

Need immediate help? Call 855-435-7787 to speak to a HELPS representative.

HELPS, A Resource to Legal Aid and Attorneys

HELPS represents lower income seniors and disabled persons who owe debt they can’t afford to pay in order to stop collector harassment and educates how they can maintain their financial independence.

HELPS Mission Statement:

“Working to bring peace to the lives of senior citizens and disabled persons.  HELPS represents lower income seniors and disabled persons who owe debt they can’t afford to pay in order to stop collector harassment and educates how they can maintain their financial independence.“

What we do

  • We represent seniors and disabled persons receiving federally protected social security, pensions, disability and VA benefits  under the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act on an ongoing basis, as their attorney in order to receive collector contact.  

  • HELPS clients can always call us if they are worried, frightened, or if they have questions.  Financial hardships and worries are especially taxing for vulnerable senior citizens.  We provide thoughtful support to our clients and encourage them to contact us whenever they have concerns. Being a resource in times of need is part of our service to our clients.  Clients are sent a quarterly newletter, “Bringing Peace”  focused on helping seniors maintain their financial independence.

  • We educate seniors and disabled how they can maintain their financial independence.

Are there any qualifications to receive HELPS assistance?

  • HELPS does not have an income requirement to qualify for our services.  Over half the seniors or disabled persons  we help have incomes over 125% of the poverty level.  

  • We help people in all 50 states no matter where they live.

  • The only qualification is that a person’s income be federally protected such as social security and pensions and they have old debt they cannot afford to pay.  We turn no one away that needs our help.  Many seniors are referred to other resources who do not need HELPS.

Is there a cost?  How is HELPS funded?  

  • HELPS, like many Legal Aid organizations has a suggested sliding scale for services.  Approximately one third receive our service for free.  Higher income seniors might pay $20-$40 monthly for one year then a reduction to half that after one year.  Lower income seniors either receive the service for free or for between $5-$10 per month. After several years the suggested fee is either waived or reduced to $5 per month.  Our primary source of support is from monthly fees paid by clients.  No one is ever declined service because they are unable or later become unable to pay.  

  • HELPS does not seek or accept referral fees when clients are referred to anyone for any other service.  Tax returns for HELPS are available upon request.  

Areas where HELPS can possibly  be a resource for other Legal Aid Organizations

  • While HELPS provides a “cease and desist” letter to anyone,  many seniors have difficulty dealing with collectors themselves and  need an attorney to accept collector contact.  HELPS provides an attorney to call if scared or worried with no restrictions- now and into the future.  

  • We can assist persons that may not qualify for Legal Aid because of excess income or residency.

  • We provide letters to potential landlords for any senior whether a member of HELPS or not explaining that the senior’s income is protected, cannot be garnished and available to pay rent.  This is done to save wasted application fees and ease the ability of seniors in finding a rental.

  • Assistance in obtaining uncollectable status with the IRS.

  • Assistance with applying for income contingent repayment of student loans and applying for discharge of student loans for disabled persons.

  • Assistance  with 1099c notices from the IRS and educating regarding form 982 for seniors that are insolvent.

  • Volunteers to  advise seniors about section 8 housing and qualifications.

  • HELPS will talk immediately with any person at any time regarding a potential scam.

  • HELPS will educate seniors about debt settlement companies and where debt settlement was entered unnecessarily, will do a joint call to cancel that service and assist in securing a refund paid to the senior.

  • HELPS educates and assists seniors and disabled persons about state tax debt owed and the fact that their income is protected from state tax collectors.

  • Providing information to veterans and spouses of veterans regarding underutilized veteran benefits, specifically Aid in Attendance.  HELPS assists in completing the application and navigating the process.  

  • Explaining  a reverse mortgage and referrals to qualified professionals that work with seniors with lower incomes, higher debt and difficulties in qualifying  for a reverse mortgage.  HELPS is not paid any money for any referral it makes to any professional for this or any other service.

What does HELPS not do? HELPS does not represent persons in court, file bankruptcies or engage in debt settlement or resolution,  draft wills and provide “legal advice.” Where necessary  HELPS will assist by referring clients to a local attorney or organization for pro bono assistance for a particular problem.

Some Bar Association publications about and by HELPS:

http://nwlawyer.wsba.org/nwlawyer/march_2017/?pm=2&u1=friend&pg=32#pg32                                                                 

http://www.osbar.org/bulletin/issues/2016/2016October/html5/index.html?page=30&noflash  

http://azlawhelp.org/articles_info.cfm?mc=26&sc=131&articleid=381.

https://www.utahbar.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/2017_edition_01_jan_feb.pdf






Learn More about Issues Facing Senior Citizens and the Services HELPS provides.

Peace of Mind
These HELPS clients were dealing with harassing debt collectors and anxiety over old Debt. HELPS provided a solution to their financial worries.