An economy that is still in recovery mode from a near collapse and the limited employment opportunities for an aging population has contributed to a rise in seniors filing bankruptcy over the past few years.
The great American wealth elimination has hit seniors that are dependent on their fixed social security income especially hard. This has caused many older adults to use their credit cards for basic necessities like groceries and gas. In fact, a University of Michigan study found that two-thirds of seniors filing bankruptcy indicated that credit card debt was the primary reason.
While those under fifty have time to rebuild their savings, people at or near retirement age do not have that luxury. Since many seniors can no longer depend on the income appreciation of their retirement accounts or their home, some are seeking relief from their mounting debts and protection of their remaining assets through bankruptcy. According to the Consumer Bankruptcy Project, the number of bankruptcy filings among senior citizens between the ages of 75 and 84 skyrocketed more than 400%!
Bankruptcy protection can give seniors the breathing room they need to live their remaining years within their means and be better prepared for unforeseen circumstances in the near future. While bankruptcy is not for everyone, if you or someone you know is a senior citizen facing a financial hardship, consult with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer to determine if filing for bankruptcy is a viable option.
The holiday season comes but once a year, yet its monetary effects can be detrimental to your credit. For consumers surrounding Fort Worth, TX, it’s not uncommon to exceed a holiday budget. In a country surrounded by consumerism and the encouragement to buy, buy, buy—it can be difficult to curb spending. All of this generosity can leave you not only with a hole in your bank account, but also a huge balance on your credit card statement.
Make sure all the extra spending doesn’t linger over you throughout 2013; formulate a plan as quickly as possible.
Consider the following steps offered by Forth Worth bankruptcy lawyers to help resolve overspending.
First, stop your spending. Did you charge all of your holiday gifts? Put away those credit cards immediately! Some people go as far to throw them in their freezer, so that they are still available, but not accessible. If you feel like you may continue to use them, cut them up while there is a balance – after all, you can always request another one. Whatever you decide to do, don’t add to the balance of your card – work on resolving it, which starts with a spending freeze.
Second, it’s time to get calculating. Accept the credit card balances in front of you and be proactive. Document your balances and calculate—with the interest rate—what your payments will be. Figure out how much it would cost to pay everything off in 3 months, 6 months, or even 12 months. This might result in the extra motivation you need to resolve your debt quicker.
Third, break down your budget. After you figure out your monthly payments, it’s time to start making cuts to unnecessary spending. Consider other cost-effective measures, like taking a look at low interest credit cards that offer a zero balance transfer, as this can lower your payments.
Finally, start a plan for the next holiday season. As any Fort Worth bankruptcy lawyer will tell you, “don’t repeat your mistakes”. Plan ahead for the upcoming holiday season with a thorough budget and plan to avoid overspending and stick to this goal.
For more information on how to alleviate post-holiday debt and make wiser spending decisions in the future, contact a Fort Worth bankruptcy lawyer.
When it comes to filing for bankruptcy, the information you are required to disclose is immense. The bankruptcy courts require a large amount of information from you. You aren’t just disclosing your debts and your primary financial information—it is much more involved than that. That’s why working with bankruptcy lawyers in Fort Worth will be extremely helpful to you. Bankruptcy lawyers Fort Worth will be able to assist you and prepare you for the questions you will most likely need to answer in the Statement of Financial Affairs, or as most bankruptcy lawyers refer to it, the “SOFA”.
Now, let’s dive under the cushions of your bankruptcy SOFA and review some questions and information you should be prepared for.
Income from employment or operation of a business
Any income that you have received year-to-date, as well as any income made during the previous two years, will be required for you to disclose. This income is used to show what type of income you’ve been making, as well as letting the court know of any changes.
Income other than employment or operation of a business
Any other income that you bring in, outside of your standard employment income is going to be required to be disclosed. Whether that is Social Security payments, retirement distributions, gifts, tax refunds, rental income, inheritance, and more. ANY other cash you have coming into your household needs to be disclosed.
If you sustained any losses from a fire, theft, gambling, or any other kind of injury or casualty during the last year prior to you filing for bankruptcy will need to be reported. If you have a question about whether or not something should be included, ask your bankruptcy lawyers in Fort Worth.
Repossession, voluntary returns, foreclosures
If you have any types of voluntary returns, repossessions, or foreclosures that have occurred during the last year, you are going to need to disclose them. This helps to clue the bankruptcy court into the big picture of your financial situation. It also lets them know of any assets that are no longer in your name.
Lawsuits and garnishments
If you have been party to any lawsuits in the last 12 months, you will need to disclose that information. This is to inform the bankruptcy trustee if you will be expecting to receive any kind of pay out in the future due to a lawsuit. Along the same lines, if you have had your wages garnished or had other property seized by creditors, you’ll need to list those, as well.
While these are only some of the questions you should expect to be asked for the SOFA, it’s not all of them. For a more detailed listing of what you should expect to see, talk to bankruptcy lawyers Forth Worth. They can guide you along in the process.
You’ve taken the difficult, albeit necessary, step to improving your future financial situation and filed for bankruptcy. You’ve sought out the advice of an Arlington bankruptcy attorney, and that is just the first step in your process to getting back on the right financial track. You may think that now you’ve filed for bankruptcy and hired or consulted with a bankruptcy attorney Arlington, your duties are complete and you can leave everything up to your attorney. Not so fast. There are still areas of your bankruptcy proceedings that are going to be your responsibility.
Tell the truth.
Always be honest with your Arlington bankruptcy attorney. Sure there may be some financial details that you are embarrassed by or that you’d rather not discuss, but let’s face it, if you aren’t honest with your attorney, they can’t give you the best advice, and certainly can’t help you through the process. If you don’t feel comfortable discussing all your financial details with your attorney, maybe you need to seek out a different attorney with whom you will be comfortable discussing all your financial dealings.
Always be precise.
When it comes to earnings and spending and all things finances, you may feel inclined to round up or down, depending on the situation. When it comes to dealing with your bankruptcy and allowing for the process to play out as smoothly as possible for you, you need to be sure that you are exact as possible. Did you earn $54,376.73 last year? Then tell your Arlington bankruptcy attorney that, don’t tell them that you made around $54k. If you aren’t exact, it could end up costing you, which is certainly not something you want to happen with your bankruptcy.
Make the bankruptcy yours.
Your bankruptcy is not your bankruptcy attorney’s bankruptcy. It isn’t your neighbor’s, it isn’t your third cousin’s bankruptcy. This is YOUR bankruptcy. Treating it as such will go miles in ensuring that you make it through the process in the best shape possible. There are little ways that you can make this happen and really take ownership of your situation and your bankruptcy. If you’re given a week to provide a copy of your tax return to your bankruptcy trustee, don’t rely on your bankruptcy attorney Arlington to remind you to get this done. Make sure that you are on top of all of the details that you need to be on top of. This will only help you to facilitate the process and make it move as smoothly as possible. Let’s be honest, you are the one who will benefit, not your attorney.
If you have questions about how to handle your bankruptcy, contact an Arlington bankruptcy attorney to find the answers you are looking for.
The devastation, created by Hurricane Sandy, has crippled the entire Northeast. Subsequently, the damage has caused nearly all residents and business owners to establish a new standard of normalcy when it comes to their daily routines. Due to Sandy’s wrath, bankruptcy courts based in Manhattan are facing their worst crisis since the acts of terrorism on 9/11. Because Lower Manhattan is essentially paralyzed, both judges and lawyers are searching for available courtrooms so they are able to hold hearings as well as resolve cases that are already in progress.
Manhattan is home to the U.S Bankruptcy Court building – considered by many as the country’s headquarters for bankruptcy cases. Due to the destruction in Lower Manhattan, the operational situation is extremely dire to say the least. For many weeks, some courtrooms were closed, while those running were in a limited operational state. The courtrooms that were open lacked the necessities such as Internet, power, and telephone service. It went as far to note that judges were hosting court cases, dimly lit up by emergency lanterns; some cases were held with no lights at all. Many times, those who were giving testimony, had to repeat it, as there was no recording software available for use. With all of these interferences, court was taking longer and the whole process was becoming less effective, if anything.
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Because of these factors, it was recently approved that judges were allowed to go outside their traditional district in New York to hold hearings elsewhere – this was an effort made to reduce continual disruption in the court process. Judges are utilizing to courthouses that remained open in the es file explorer apk storm, to continue already started bankruptcy proceedings, as an attempt to downplay disruptions. Despite these efforts, it still remains extremely difficult to run a fully operational courthouse. The widespread transportation crisis is making it impossible for employees, jurors, and even witnesses to get to court.
With all of these obstacles, bankruptcy professionals are coming up with unique alternatives to assist with keeping cases on route. Through using technology and good rational, cases are being kept alive. Orders have arrived online even while courtroom doors are closed. Telephonic hearings are being used in order to allow key settlements to be resulted. Bankruptcy attorneys are banding together to make sure that collectively, their cases do not falter as a result of Sandy. Firms that generally do not work together or lack a partnership are opening their doors to firms that have been displaced as a result of the natural disaster. These outpourings of assistance are just a testament to the community of lawyers working to tirelessly continue their jobs, despite the obstacles at hand, to ultimately be successful in their ventures.