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National Debt Relief review: Is it legit?

Some customers claim to have saved, while others say they were hit with steep fees.

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Our verdict

No upfront fees and higher-than-average savings make this debt relief company stand out from the competition — especially for those struggling with private student loan debt. But the program doesn't work for everyone, and some customers report they ended up in deeper debt than what they originally owed after using the program.

Best for: People in debt and facing bankruptcy as their only other option.

  • Offers 100% money-back guarantee
  • Works with some student loans
  • Low minimum of $7,500
  • May result in a lower credit score
  • Mixed customer reviews

National Debt Relief

Learn more and apply on National Debt Relief's secure site

How much can I save?

Clients who complete the program save an average of 30% to 50% of the debt they enroll in the program — including fees. But your savings depends on how much debt you have and how successful National Debt Relief is in negotiating with your creditors.

What you save also depends on finishing the program. Based on reviews on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website, some customers claim to have saved some money, while others claim they ended up paying more than the original debt they owed.

How much does National Debt Relief cost?

National Debt Relief typically charges 15% to 25% of the total debt you enroll over two to four years. However, your exact percentage depends on the amount you enroll and the state you live in.

What does this look like? To settle $10,000 of debt with an average interest rate of 15% over three years, you could end up with a total debt of $15,639.44 by the time you’re ready to negotiate.

Your fee would likely fall between $2,346 and $3,910.

Will National Debt Relief hurt my credit?

National Debt Relief only does a soft credit pull during the application process, which won’t lower your score. However, using National Debt Relief — or any debt settlement company — will harm your credit. The process requires you to stop paying your creditors while National negotiates your debts. And once settlements have been reached, your credit score may be negatively impacted by closed accounts or accounts marked as not paid in full.

That said, National Debt Relief has resources and tips to help you rebuild your credit after debt settlement. Read our guide on building credit for more ways to boost your score.

National Debt Relief details

Free quote or consultationYes
ServicesDebt settlement
Minimum debt$7,500
Average turnaround24–48 months
Fees15% to 25%
Types of debtUnsecured debts, including private student loans on a case-by-case basis
AccreditationsAFCC, IAPDA, BBB
Direct or third-party negotiationsDirect
State availabilityAvailable in 42 states

Before you sign up with a debt relief company

Debt relief companies typically charge a percentage of a customer’s debt or a monthly program fee for their services. And not all companies are transparent about these costs or drawbacks that can negatively affect your credit score. Depending on the company you work with, you might pay other fees for setting up new accounts or third-party settlement services, which can leave you in a worse situation than when you signed up.

Consider alternatives before signing up with a debt relief company:

  • Payment extensions. Companies you owe may be willing to extend your payment due date or put you on a longer payment plan.
  • Nonprofit credit counseling. Look for free debt-management help from nonprofit organizations like the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.
  • Debt settlement. If you can pay a portion of the bill, offer the collection agency a one-time payment as a settlement. Collection agencies are often willing to accept a lower payment on your debt to close the account.

How National Debt Relief compares to other lenders

Compare National Debt Relief’s rates, terms and features to other debt relief providers.

National Debt Relief logo

National Debt Relief

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Loan term

2 to 4 years

Loan amount

Starting at $7,500

Min. credit score


Freedom Debt Relief logo

Freedom Debt Relief

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Loan term

24-48 months

Loan amount

Starting at $7,500

Min. credit score


Accredited Debt Relief logo

Accredited Debt Relief

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Loan term

2 to 4 years

Loan amount

Starting at $10,000

Min. credit score


National Debt Relief reviews and complaints

BBB accredited Yes
BBB rating A+
BBB customer reviews 4.59 out of 5 stars, based on 1619 customer reviews
Trustpilot Score 4.7 out of 5 stars, based on 35,974 customer reviews
Customer reviews verified as of 04 January 2023

Many people have had positive experiences with National Debt Relief — although many reviews come with the caveat that they haven’t finished the program. The few negative reviews complain about fees and unexpected costs, which is unfortunately common among debt relief companies.

While some customers claim they only had to pay a fraction of their debt thanks to the company, others left reviews stating they ended up paying more by enrolling in National Debt Relief’s program. And some claim the company tried to keep the money they’d saved in their escrow account when they canceled their enrollment.

Is National Debt Relief legit?

National Debt Relief is a legitimate debt settlement company founded in 2009 and licensed to work with residents of 42 states as well as Washington, DC.

It’s among the most recognized debt settlement services in the country. It’s accredited with top industry associations, including the American Fair Credit Council (AFCC).

It’s also accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). And it hasn’t faced any issues with regulators — unlike some of its competitors.

Its website uses both McAfee and Norton security systems to protect your information from malware attacks and phishing. And your personal details are secured with industry-standard SSL encryption. You’re also eligible for 90 days of identity theft coverage worth up to $100,000 after you enter your information on the site.

Your monthly payments go to an FDIC-insured trust account with Global Client Solutions, a company that provides account management services to the debt relief industry.

National Debt Relief provides a service for those unable to handle their debt. But before you sign up, learn more about debt relief to see how it could affect your finances.

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4 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    JackieMay 1, 2019

    If decide to enroll in a debt settlement plan, can I keep one credit card active and make payments to avoid not having a credit card open for such things as rental car or hotel stay where credit card is mandatory?

      Default Gravatar
      nikkiangcoMay 2, 2019

      Hi Jackie,

      Thanks for reaching out to Finder!

      It’s helpful to know that if you want to settle your credit card debt, you can’t keep using your credit card. If you decide to stop making credit card payments, your creditor usually closes your account.

      Hope this clarifies!


    Default Gravatar
    LindaJuly 13, 2018

    I have no income what is the best way to get debt relief?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JhezelynJuly 20, 2018Staff

      Hello Linda,

      Thank you for your comment.

      There are two principal debt-relief options: debt settlement and bankruptcy. Both of these methods of debt relief will affect your credit score. Getting a debt consolidation loan or using a credit counseling service, might be one of your options as well.

      I am sorry to hear about you having no income. You may refer to the steps below on how to deal with debt without an income:
      – Create a Survival Budget
      – Prioritize Your Debts
      – Negotiate With Your Creditors
      – Explore Other Sources of Income or find a temporary work
      – Available public assistance programs may help
      – Debt Consolidation
      – Debt Settlement

      You may want to check our list of debt relief companies.


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