No one likes to stare down a pile of bills month after month. When these bills begin to outnumber the money in your bank account, you may have to choose between paying them or having enough gas to get to work.
What happens if you have too much debt and can’t afford the bills? Often, getting behind on one or two bills may spell disaster. With interest rates rising and late fees, the minimum due may skyrocket, leaving you in a bind. The choice to file bankruptcy may come after a lot of thought and consideration, but no one can force you to do so. Discover what happens to debt if you do decide to go the bankruptcy route.
The Pros and Cons of Bankruptcy
Bankruptcy may prove the answer to your debt dilemma. Regardless of the chapter you file under, you should get substantial debt relief. Chapter 7 is for people who have little or no way to pay back the money owed to creditors. Chapter 13 establishes a payment plan between you and the creditors. Once all payments are made, the bankruptcy is discharged and the debt is erased. The biggest pro in filing bankruptcy is getting out from under debt. It allows you the ability to start over and build better financial habits. The drawback is if you did not learn not to make the same mistakes, you might find yourself back in debt years later.
Not Every Debt Qualifies
While bankruptcy resolves many of the debts you may be dealing with, some debts do not fall under the court’s purview. Some examples include:
- Back Pay for child support
- Federal income tax shortfalls
- Federal student loans
These accounts cannot be resolved through bankruptcy as they cannot be discharged. While you may have a chance to negotiate more favorable repayment terms with these entities, a court will not erase them.
The Immediate Benefits of Filing Bankruptcy
If you are behind in paying debts, your phone is likely ringing off the hook. Collection agencies are known for their habitual and harassing tactics to guilt or scare you into paying. However, if you genuinely can’t pay, simply telling them that won’t make it stop. The only surefire way to get collectors off your back is by declaring bankruptcy. When you start the court process, all creditors receive a notice telling them what you have done. They must then stop trying to contact you and go through the court process to attempt to recover.
Bankruptcy may give you a second chance at reigning in your financial situation. Speaking with a lawyer, like a bankruptcy lawyer from the Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie, & Wood, will prove beneficial in getting you on the path for debt resolution.