Many of the people who come to the Law Office of Corey L. Mills for help in declaring bankruptcy have been living their lives in debt for so long that they can scarcely remember what it is like not to owe large sums of money. You may have spent years or even decades watching yourself gradually – or quickly – slipping deeper and deeper into debt. Debt is a problem that feeds itself; it is a dwindling spiral: The more you owe, the more money from your paycheck is devoted to loan payments, making it more difficult for you to afford the things you need and want, and making it more likely that you will use your credit cards or take out a new loan. Getting out of debt can be exceedingly difficult, and for many people the most responsible choice is to file for bankruptcy. That is why it is important to consult with one of the most experienced bankruptcy attorneys in Katy, TX.
OUR HOUSEHOLD INCOME IS SIX FIGURES, BUT WE CAN’T SEEM TO KEEP UP WITH OUR BILLS. SHOULD WE CONSIDER BANKRUPTCY?
Possibly. Oftentimes, families who have significant income have trouble managing high debt loads. The debt may be the result of high medical bills or an extended period of unemployment after a layoff. Here’s an example of a family with higher income who might benefit from filing bankruptcy:
- Family of four. Husband is laid off from his oil & gas job he had held for the past 12 years where he was making $130k/year plus bonus. Wife is a teacher making $52k/year. During his period of unemployment, after depleting the majority of their savings, they utilized their credit cards to try to stay afloat and maintain some sense of normalcy for their kids, knowing that when he finally landed the new job everything would be ok again. The total credit card debt they incurred during that period totaled $80k. Before that, they already had $20k in credit card debt, so they now have $100k in credit card debt. Also, during that time, one of their kids had to spend 4 days in the hospital and they now have medical bills totaling $20k. After searching for 14 months, husband finally finds a new job, but at a reduced salary of $95k and no guaranteed bonus structure. If he had found a job making the same as before, he knew they could pay off their debts over time and they’d be fine. Since he is making $35k/year less, the family is not able to continue to pay all of their regular household expenses and pay the required credit card payments. Two of the larger credit cards go unpaid for 90 days, causing all of the credit card companies to increase the interest rates to 29.99%. In order to pay off the credit cards in 60 months, the minimum monthly payments for all of the credit cards would be $3,175, with approximately $91k of interest paid. This plan is no longer sustainable. How could bankruptcy help? They could file a chapter 13 case to pay back their creditors based upon their ability to pay them. The worst case scenario would be to pay 100% to their creditors, which would require a payment of approximately $2,100 per month on $120k overall debt, with no further interest paid on the debts (saving approximately $91k in credit card interest costs). However, if we determine they can only afford to pay $450/month, we would propose a plan to pay $450/month to the creditors for 60 months. At the end of the 60 months, they would receive a discharge of the remaining balances owed on those debts.
IMMEDIATE DEBT RELIEF THROUGH BANKRUPTCY
Depending on whether you qualify to file under Chapter 7
or Chapter 13
of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, you could see your debts discharged within a matter of months, or it could take as long as five years. In either case, as soon as you file your petition with the bankruptcy court, you will be protected by the automatic stay, which is an injunction that protects you from further actions by your creditors. You won’t have to worry about threatening letters and phone calls, repossession of your car, or even foreclosure
. You will be given the breathing room you deserve to begin getting your financial affairs in order.
Once you reach the conclusion of the bankruptcy process, most or even all of your debts will be formally discharged. You will no longer have to worry about how you can balance your daily living expenses with the requirement to make your monthly loan payments. You won’t have to lay awake at night wondering how you can make ends meet. You will now be able to keep more of your paycheck to use and enjoy today while also saving for tomorrow. Looking for a lawyer for a bankruptcy case in Katy, Richmond, Copperfield or Sugar Land? If you are tired of living in debt and are determined to make a fresh start financially, contact a Katy bankruptcy lawyer now for a free consultation to discuss your options and get started on a strategy for your case!