Personal bankruptcy is a big step for many people, and it is a legitimate tool that helps people get out from under a mountain of debt. Many borrowers successfully build their credit after filing bankruptcy, and continue on with success in their financial lives. Read on to find out more about personal bankruptcy, and what it means to you financially.
Many people do not know that student loans are not dischargeable debt under bankruptcy laws. Do not go into your bankruptcy thinking that your student loans will be discharged, because only in cases of extreme hardship are they considered. If the job you received from pursuing your degree will never allow you to pay off your debt, you may have a chance, but it is highly unlikely.
If you are trying to rebuild credit after filing for bankruptcy, you should apply for secured credit cards. These can help you establish credit, but you have to make sure that they are one of the companies that report to the major credit bureaus, since all of them do not.
Do not feel embarrassed or guilty about filling for bankruptcy. Many people fear that they will be treated as second class citizens after they declare themselves bankrupt. However, this is not the case. The option to ‘declare yourself bankrupt’ was developed by the government to enable assistance to be given to people who find themselves overwhelmed with debt and in need of a fresh start. Last year, over 1.4 million people filed bankruptcy and the majority of them are now living a happy, debt-free life. So, there is no need for you to be afraid of bankruptcy stigma.
Make a detailed list. Every creditor and debt should be listed on your application. Even if your credit cards do not carry a balance at all, it should still be included. Loans for cars or recreational vehicles should also be included on your application. Full disclosure is imperative during this part of the bankruptcy process.
Before you make a final decision to file for bankruptcy, look into all the options that are available to help your financial situation. If you are buried under credit card debt, it can help to check out a debt-consolidation, or home-equity loan if you qualify. You can also try negotiating smaller payments on your debt until, your finances are better in control. Bankruptcy is always an option, but if you can alleviate your problems in another way, you will be able to avoid a major hit to your credit history.
Once you have filed for bankruptcy, do not discontinue payment on secured loans. These loans are the ones for your car or your home. Even if you are not receiving paper bills or statements on these accounts, make the regular payment on time, each month. These are likely the possessions you do not want included from the bankruptcy.
Gambling losses are another thing that must be listed on your application for bankruptcy. Any monies lost twelve months prior to filing must be disclosed. Failure to disclose could cause you to face perjury charges. If you are found guilty, you could face time in jail and dismissal of your petition.
Start taking calls from bill collectors. You may have been avoiding calls from bill collectors, but if you are filing bankruptcy you may need to speak to them. You need to have all of your debts laid out so that your lawyer can get to work involving them in your case. If you don’t include a debt, it will not be discharged, and you will still have to pay it.
See what the value is on your home. If you are upside down on your mortgage, you may be able to eliminate your second mortgage. The main guideline for this is that your home must be worth more than what you owe on the first mortgage. This could really help your financial situation by relieving you from that large second mortgage payment each month.
Be weary of creditors once you have filed for bankruptcy. These companies think because you have filed for bankruptcy, you cannot file it again for a long time. You are not risky to lend to. By accepting loans from these companies, you are putting yourself at risk for more financial turmoil.
A good personal bankruptcy tip is, to be careful up until the time that you file for bankruptcy. If they see that you’ve just been driving the debt up higher, and higher to take advantage of the system, they’ll probably prevent you from filing for bankruptcy altogether. Don’t let this happen.
Don’t get into bankruptcy with a false sense of security. Be aware that once you’ve filed personal bankruptcy, it is public. Just because it involves personal financial information does not mean that it involves personal privacy. It immediately becomes public information. Anyone and everyone can see everything about your finances, if they chose to search for it.
Many times people feel forced into filing for bankruptcy. They do not know that debt settlements are available. If your debt is much greater than your income, you could be a candidate for a debt settlement. Many times credit counselors can negotiate with banks and credit card companies to reduce the amount you owe, so that you do not have to file bankruptcy.
If you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, (the sort where you agree to pay off some of your debt) it’s a good idea to hang onto the financial counselor or lawyer who helped you file. You will still be dealing with your creditors following your bankruptcy, and they will often start to demand additional funds. Professional expertise can be invaluable in defending yourself from these extra financial burdens.
Filing personal bankruptcy can provide you with a safe haven from creditors and bill collectors. Navigating your way through bankruptcy to a debt-free life can help get you on the road to a more positive financial future. Personal bankruptcy is not for everyone, but it is worth investigating to see if it makes sense for you.