The sad fact is that many Americans become so deeply in debt that they must file for bankruptcy. Many of these bankruptcies weren’t the result of reckless spending, but because of financial hardships. A number were low-income people who simply didn’t have enough money saved to deal with unexpected major expenses such as the loss of a job or a serious illness.
Bankruptcy filings in the U.S. have steadily increased over the past century, and especially so from 1980 to 2005. In fact, they hit an all-time high in 2005 with more than two million cases filed. While fewer people filed in 2016, there were still 794,960 bankruptcies filed that year.
There have been many articles written about this topic. For example, if you search that term, you’ll get over 14,000,000 results. Unfortunately, attorneys hoping to find clients wrote many of these articles. Some are just advertisements for companies selling debt relief, while others are just explanations of the term.
Finding trustworthy information about bankruptcy can be hard. Fortunately, one good source for articles exists: the National Debt Relief blog. Our blog includes numerous articles dealing with all facets of Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. We have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and have been in business for many years, helping thousands of Americans achieve debt relief.
Here is a rundown of our top 10 articles on bankruptcy with links to the full articles. Reading these articles before filing could save you a lot of money and many sleepless nights.
1. How to Know if You Should Declare Bankruptcy
A bankruptcy will have a dramatic effect on your life, as it will stay on your credit report for up to 10 years. The problem is that there are no concrete rules for determining if you are a good candidate. A bankruptcy is a “nuclear” option because its consequences are so severe. It will have financial and emotional consequences, and you need to consider what it would do to your future. The article suggests that it would be good to get credit counseling first, as a debt management plan might be a better alternative, and it certainly wouldn’t have consequences as severe as a bankruptcy. Click here to read the entire article and learn more.
2. The Hard, Cold Facts about Bankruptcy
Did you know that our founding fathers felt so strongly that people should be able to get a fresh start that they wrote it into our Constitution? Of course, bankruptcy should be your last resort due to its far-reaching consequences. This article explains the two types: Chapter 7 and a Chapter 13. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy will have the most serious consequences. One of the worst is that it will stay on your credit report for 7-10 years. It’s important to understand that the law requires you to get credit counseling within 180 days before you file for bankruptcy. Other options are available that you should consider besides bankruptcy, and this article lists several of them, including debt settlement. To learn more about it as well as the differences between a Chapter 7 and a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, click on this link and read the entire article.
3. Bankruptcy and What You Need to Know About its Six Biggest Myths
The best thing about a bankruptcy is that it provides a fresh start. However, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy won’t eliminate all your debts. It will discharge most of your unsecured debts, such as credit card debts and medical bills, but it can’t discharge federal student loans, alimony, or child support. The second myth about bankruptcy is that you can spend recklessly before you file and then refuse to pay back the money. If you try this, you could actually end up in trouble, as courts often rule this as fraud. A third myth is that your credit is toast, forever. The fact is that you could get your credit rebuilt in just a year or two. Two other myths debunked are that a bankruptcy is a cure-all and that you can file only once. To learn how many times you can file for bankruptcy, and why you shouldn’t think of it as a cure-all, click on this link and read the entire article.
4. Wiping Out Student Loan Debt through Bankruptcy: The Pros and Cons
Millions of people struggle to repay their student loan debts. Many are stuck with more than $50,000 in student loan debts, and some people in their 50s still owe on their student loans. Several reasons exist for this. The biggest of these is the increased cost of going to college, coupled with the fact that it’s so easy to get student loans. A sad fact is that there’s no way out. The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 changed the law so that people can no longer discharge student loan debts through bankruptcy. As this article points out, the people hardest hit are those who bought into the idea that everyone should have a college degree. They went to school for a couple of years, learned it wasn’t for them, and then dropped out. They were left stuck in debt and without a degree to show for the money. Fortunately, options exist for people stuck with a pile of student loan debt. This includes a federal loan repayment program that could at least ease your burden. Click on this link to learn about it and about other options.
5. The Top Eight Things You Need to Know About Bankruptcy
If you have a huge amount of debt and can’t see any way to repay it within the next few years, then filing for bankruptcy could be a good option. However, you shouldn’t run off to an attorney until you know the most important aspects of it. For example, two types of personal bankruptcies are available. One of them, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, won’t discharge all your debts. In some cases, it won’t even discharge all your unsecured debts. This article also discusses the documents you will need to have when you file, and that you need to understand what a bankruptcy will do to your credit score. However, it’s possible to rebuild your credit score after. Click on this link to read the complete article and learn how to do it.
6. How Are Debt Consolidation Loans Handled in Bankruptcy?
When you decide it’s time to climb out of debt, it’s important to take a hard look at options such as a debt consolidation loan. If you’re unfamiliar with this type of loan, it’s where a company buys all your unsecured debts. You then have just one payment to make per month. One of these loans can be very helpful if you have a number of different debt-related accounts. As this article reveals, you can get a debt consolidation loan from a number of different sources. However, what happens to the loan if you were to file? This depends on whether you choose a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you choose a Chapter 7, the debt consolidation loan is subject to discharge (eliminated) because it’s an unsecured debt. It’s a good idea to hire an attorney if you decide to go in this direction. Click this link to learn why this is true, and to learn more about the bankruptcy process.
7. 10 Tips for Getting Back in the Game after a Bankruptcy
There’s a certain amount of shame in declaring bankruptcy, plus the stain it leaves in your credit file. Things you can do to get back on track after include learning to pay cash for everything and making sure you pay all your bills on time. In addition, as this article reports, you need to create a budget and keep an eye on your credit reports. You should also get a secured credit card, for which you deposit a certain amount of money and then charge on the card until its balance reaches zero. You then refill the card and keep doing it until you’ve used it for a year. It would also be good to reestablish your credit by getting a line of credit through a bank where a savings account secures it. Try to nurture long-term relationships, and never buy a car unless it’s necessary. Click on this link to read the entire article, and to learn why you need to remember the human touch. If you follow the tips in this article, you should be able to get back in the game quickly.
8. Avoid Bankruptcy: Lessons You Can Learn from Athletes
If you file, you’re in good company. Many professional athletes have also faced bankruptcy. This article reveals a few reasons why. First, it’s because it’s sort of like winning the lottery. When an athlete suddenly earns millions of dollars, he often doesn’t know how to handle it, especially with new friends coming out of the woodwork. Successful athletes typically have dozens of people coming to them and asking for help. Many professional athletes simply don’t know how to implement proper financial habits because they failed to complete college. Many hire financial managers, but they are often only concerned with their cut. Click on this link to read the entire article and learn the three sports principles you could use to avoid bankruptcy. Spoiler alert – Always have a plan!
9. 5 Bankruptcy Lies in Relation to Your Credit Score
A number of ways exist to achieve debt relief, and bankruptcy is one of them. Unfortunately, it will have the most severe effect on your credit score. As revealed in this article, five different bankruptcy lies exist about credit scores that could be stopping you from pursuing this option. The first is that a good credit report will leave you with a high credit score after bankruptcy. This is simply not true. It’s also not true that bankruptcy has the same effect despite the amount of your debt. It’s equally false that all the information about a discharged debt will disappear from your credit report, and that your credit score will remain low until the bankruptcy hits your credit history. It’s also a lie that all types of a bankruptcy will remain in your credit history for the next 10 years. Despite all this, there are times when filing makes sense. Click on this link to read the complete article and learn when these times are.
10. Bankruptcy Versus Debt Settlement – Which is Best?
If you’re far behind on your bills and can’t see any way to catch up, you have two possible options: bankruptcy and debt settlement. Which you choose will depend, of course, on your financial situation. However, here are some tips that could help you decide. First, it’s important to check your credit report, as this will help you assess your financial situation. You should then list your total debts and the amount of your monthly income. Third, understand how each of these alternatives will affect your credit score. Fourth, figure out what each option will cost you. Finally, do a comparison between the two options. Look at each one’s short and long-term benefits. While both will help you find debt relief, you need to research each one before making a decision. Click on this link to read the entire article and learn which of these options might be best for you.