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Is Bankruptcy The Only Answer?

Jan 31, 2008
When you've lost your job or are staring at high medical bills you can't pay, you may start thinking about a way to end it. For many people, bankruptcy is the only way out. However, it may not be the only answer for you.

Depending on the size of your debt, the amount of your assets and the size of the family, you may not need to file for bankruptcy. Even if you do, all of these things will help determine what type of bankruptcy is best for you. Chapter 7 may look the most appealing but you may gain more by filing for Chapter 13.

Many debtors are willing to work with debtors who approach them and try to work things out. They may offer you a period of time where you don't need to pay, so you can get everything under control. However, most creditors are not as willing to help you without giving you a load of stress.

Sometimes the reality that you need to file for bankruptcy is something you must accept. There is nothing you can do about it. However, if you do want to think about filing, you will benefit most by seeking out a good bankruptcy attorney to help you with the process.

When debt pile up and monthly charges demand more than income, it may be time to consider filing a bankruptcy case before your financial life really gets out of hand. While a person's self-esteem may suffer from filing for court protection under the laws of bankruptcy, there are also circumstances that may force the decision.

Most people live their lives within their means and practice the use of credit responsibly. Occasionally, some life changing experience will alter their intentions to make good on promises to repay their debts such as a job loss or medical problems and before they know it the bills have piled up. Attempting to keep up with the bills can be admirable but when the time comes that it is no longer possible looking into filing a bankruptcy case may alleviate a lot of undue stress.

There may still remain a certain stigma among people that if they file for bankruptcy they are admitting to being a failure at controlling their spending. What many fail to recognize is that sometimes situations beyond their control may place them in a financial dilemma. If it is a problem that continues after filing a bankruptcy case, they will want to take steps to help them treat their credit more responsibly.

One thing to remember is that once a bankruptcy case has been filed it becomes part of the public record. While there are few people who actually look through these records for information, the basics of the case will be available for review.

Although by and large filing for bankruptcy no longer has the social stigma attached to it as perhaps it did in times gone by, there is a curious phenomenon some debtors have found: when filing for bankruptcy, company is plentiful - but not always desirable. Under the heading of "misery loves company," there are those filers who will band together and sympathetically swap stories about how they were made to take this drastic step.

Sometimes this kind of company may be found in well-meaning support group settings while other times it may be a number of friends that come to cheer up the debtor. Do not misunderstand: bankruptcy is an often traumatic event and having friends to be supportive goes a long way to helping you keep your sanity and sense of self worth intact, but there are times when those who are too well meaning with in effect hinder you from moving on.

This of course refers to those who will rob you of the ability to take responsibility for your actions and see the mistakes you made for what they really are: mistakes that must not be repeated. Failure to heed the lessons learned from such a bankruptcy will lead to a repeat or at least to a failure to heal the damaged credit and might once again find you in dire financial straits. Surround yourself with those who will reaffirm your sense of well-being and self esteem, but who will also offer help with working out a budget, sticking to the budget, and will not tempt you with offers of "retail therapy" to make you feel better about yourself.
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