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Photo of attorneys Shelley Slafkes and Bruce Levitt
Photo of attorneys Shelley Slafkes and Bruce Levitt
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After Bankruptcy: Plan for Good Financial Health

On Behalf of | Oct 12, 2017 | Life After Bankruptcy

If you are considering bankruptcy or have just filed, you are probably looking forward to exiting a dark time. Financial problems can happen to anyone-but no matter the level of accomplishment or income you may have achieved, people often feel embarrassed when they file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Hundreds of thousands of people file bankruptcies every year in the United States, often doing so after years of struggling to keep up with the ever-increasing cost of living. And as you may have experienced, mild financial problems escalate quickly when an unexpected (and expensive) event occurs like the loss of a job, illness, divorce, and more.

Bankruptcy Offers Many Positive Features

Filing for bankruptcy is a serious decision, which few take likely especially after consulting with an experienced bankruptcy attorney. This process is usually considered a last option-when you have virtually no way to pay the creditors who are waiting, calling, threatening, and may have even sued or received judgments against you. While filing for bankruptcy can negatively affect your credit, there are many positives.

Filing for and completing bankruptcy means that you have made the commitment to solving your financial problems. Rather than worrying endlessly as the bills continue to pile up, you have made the effort to change your current situation-and the reward is a fresh start. Most likely, whether you file for Chapter 7 or 13, you will be able to retain your home and your car (if you desire to do so), as well as fending off any threat of foreclosure or repossession in the beginning as the automatic stay goes into effect. Harassment by creditors is stopped, and you can look forward to a positive new phase of your life, rebuilding.

Value Your New Path & Keep the Momentum Going

It is important to understand what led to bankruptcy and to take any possible steps to avoid such issues in the future. While many of us are helpless in the face of insurmountable medical bills or the unexpected loss of a job, with the debt discharged in bankruptcy, it should be possible to maintain a new and healthy budget, and to begin restoring your credit score… Financial counseling is extremely valuable, and reconsidering your previous relationship with money should help you to proceed more positively in the future.

Live Beneath Your Means & Rebuild Slowly

While you may be able to start off with a small credit line on a regular credit card (depending on the offers you receive), there are numerous companies that offer secured credit cards too. Usually requiring a nominal amount (around $200) that then serves as your limit, secured credit cards are an excellent way to rebuild credit. You may also find that in just a few years you are even able to buy another home or car, if necessary. The key is to live beneath your means, pay all bills on time or early, rebuild an emergency fund, and make the most of your fresh new financial start.

Let Us Help

Because Levitt & Slafkes, P.C. has already helped thousands of clients through the bankruptcy process, we understand exactly what you are going through, and we are here to answer all your questions. Call us at 973-323-2953, or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.