Alternatives to Bankruptcy
If you are thinking about filing for bankruptcy, explore each of your other options first. Bankruptcy is a suitable option for some people, however it should be your last resort. Let's go through some bankruptcy alternatives so you leave no stone unturned.
Credit/Debt Counseling & Debt Management Plans
There are some legitimate companies that offer free debt counseling to people who want to get out of debt. If you have considerable credit card debt, you may be a candidate for a debt management plan. With a debt management plan, you make routine payments to the credit counseling firm, and they make payments on your behalf to the creditors. In addition to the convenience that this option provides, a debt management plan usually lowers credit card interest rates, waives late and over limit fees and stops collection activity. It can be a good resource for some people to help them save a considerable amount of money and get out of debt faster.
If your debt is significantly overdue, debt settlement might be an option. Whereas in a debt management plan, you pay off your total debt over time, debt settlement involves creditors forgiving a portion of your debt. The obvious advantage to this would be the cash savings. The disadvantage would be the fact that your credit report will show that the debt was paid for less than the agreed amount, which would likely lower your credit score. Furthermore, you 'd want to talk to a tax professional because you would likely pay taxes on the forgiven amount as revenue. If you are interested in this alternative, you might try your hand at talking directly with the creditors. Debt settlement companies usually charge high fees and give no guarantees.
Do you have a car that you could sell for some fast cash? How about stocks or bonds that have significant value? Selling or liquidating an asset allows you to repay your debts quickly and easily. The toughest part of this choice is breaking the emotional tie that you might have to your possessions. Nevertheless, your sadness may turn to joy when you realize how good it feels to be debt free!
Debt Consolidation Loan
Some people choose to get rid of the hassle of paying several creditors by getting a debt consolidation loan that covers all of their debts. If you have equity in your home, you could take out a home equity loan to repay unsecured creditors. Just beware that if you do not pay your home equity loan, you could find yourself evicted since a home equity loan is secured by your house.
With any option you choose-- including bankruptcy-- you're going to need to make some lifestyle adjustments. Remember that saying, "If you keep doing what you've always done, you'll keep getting what you always got." Lifestyle changes usually require making small sacrifices now to prevent major problems later. For instance, selling your motorcycle might give you enough cash to pay your mortgage and prevent foreclosure. Maintaining a tighter rein on spending can also help you prevent bankruptcy. Begin by tracking your spendings and developing a budget. You may find that you have more disposable income than you realized.
Some individuals with minimal assets and no financial means to pay their debts are considered to be "judgment proof." This means that anyone that sues you and obtains a court judgment will not have the ability to collect from you simply because you have no assets that they can legally take. A person is usually not thrown in jail for failing to pay debts, other than in legal situations (e.g., neglecting to pay child support). Nor can a creditor take away essentials, such as basic clothing, regular household furnishings, personal effects, food, Social Security, unemployment, or public assistance benefits. You need to definitely seek legal guidance if you are questioning if you're judgment proof.
For More Information About Bankruptcy Alternatives in Newport Beach, California, Contact Thomas K. McKnight LLP At (800) 466 - 7507 or Visit Our Website at TKMLLP.Com for a Free Consultation!