The podcast version of this article can be found above. Other episodes can be found here or where you listen to podcasts.
About 2 months ago, I started getting tons of calls (like 3 or 4 per day) from people who had gotten a letter from the SBA which stated that they need to contact the SBA to arrange for payment within 60 days, otherwise the file would be referred to the US Treasury for collection. I normally get maybe 2 to 3 calls a week from people who got this letter, but now I was getting 20 people a week asking about my services with regards to submitting an SBA Offer In Compromise. Before I explain the reason for the explosion in cases, a few comments:
- If you got this letter, please, for the love of all that is holy, DO NOT wait until the last minute. In most cases, if the file goes to Treasury, it will NEVER settle. People have told me that their ill-informed attorney or advisor told them to wait it out, and eventually they would be able to settle for a small sum. WRONG! If you got this letter, your best chance to settle is BEFORE is goes to Treasury.
- Just because you got a letter from the SBA does not mean that you will necessarily be dealing directly with the office that sent the letter (Birmingham sends the letters). In some cases, they will direct you to Little Rock. In some cases, you will deal directly with Birmingham. And yet in come cases, they will send you back to the lender. A tangled web, right? the amazing part is that each office has their own nuances and will impact how much you can actually settle for. I mention all this for one main reason: I want to show you that this stuff is highly dependent on knowing lots of critical little tidbits. And guess what, I’ve got ’em!
Anyway, back to the reason why all these letters went out in the first place. In the course of one of my settlements, I was dealing with a guy at the SBA that I have dealt with many times before, and he told me that all the letters were basically a goof. All the files were SUPPOSED to already be at Treasury, but nobody really knows why they weren’t. So in order to get all the files to Treasury, they issued 60 day letters from SBA to thousands and thousands of old files. This is why people who’s businesses closed 5 years ago are now hearing from SBA. THIS IS A GIFT FOLKS, DON’T WASTE IT. While you are at it, hire a super duper workout guy who has years of experience handling situations EXACTLY like yours. Like Nike says, Just Do It!