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What you said was partially true but is somewhat a broad generalization. 1st USA sends a letter to clients accepted in a debt management program that says you can't use any other credit while you are in a consolidation but they can't force you to close accounts that are with other banks and the other banks are certainly not going to close your accounts as long as you are current. The most important issue to be addressed when consolidating credit card debt is how the accounts are closed prior to the proposal process from the consolidator. What shows up on your credit report depends on your particular mix of creditors because they vary in their policies. For example if you consolidated Fleet, Wells Fargo and Bank of America and closed out the accounts before they recieved the proposals from the consolidation company, credit counseling will not show up on your credit report. If you consolidated Providian and Citibank the Providian account would be reported as credit counseling and Citibank in most cases would not. You must be very careful in choosing a consolidator because most of what is on the internet are scams. The easiest clue as to whether a consolidation company is honest is to see if they say you can include the I.R.S or student loans in the plan. Quite simply if they do say that, THEY ARE A SCAM and trying to inflate the size of your payment because the first payment is a retainer. The bottom line is that there are ways to do this while minimizing any damage to your credit that begins before you start the program and who you choose to handle it for you.

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