Is Bankruptcy the right choice for you?

Single parents and financial struggles are nothing new.  Statistics show how easy it is for single parents to end up in Court within just a few years of becoming head of household.

Recently, the number of bankruptcies went down, but not because we are doing better, but because single parents have had to tighten their belts.

The following statistics and facts will cover both single parents and two parent families. Statistics on single parent families will be included within for read through to learn more.

As of June 30 consumer debt-for credit cards and car loans, was $2.18 trillion, up from $1.5 trillion in 2000, according to the Federal Reserve Board. For the first time Americans have more debt than disposable income.

Households carry an estimated average of $7,253 in credit card debt alone. Meanwhile, the savings rate in the second quarter of 2006 was the second lowest since the Depression.

Many will say "Don't listen to anyone who tells you that he handled his own bankruptcy and everything went just fine," says James Caher, co-author of the book below-see link.We know quite a few who did file independently, and the most successful used his book.. so we recommend it. It will help you understand your options first, then proceed into what is best for your future, not just the present situation. It's called Personal Bankruptcy Laws for Dummies

Here are some Bankruptcy and Debtor examples and samples.
How to File Chapter 7  
Credit after being Bankrupt

Divorce courts are full of families who have fought over finances.

There is a great book written on this, and has featured sections on Divorce, Money and Bankruptcy.  If you feel particularly threatened financially before, during, or after a divorce,  Divorce-Protect your Finances. is the book I would recommend reading immediately! 

Single mothers are two and three times more likely to go bankrupt, respectively, than their childless counterparts. Divorced mothers face an additional risk, because they often lose health coverage linked to their ex-husbands’ jobs.

According to statistics on just in America, about half of all debtors file due to unpaid medical bills, even though three-quarters have health insurance during all or part of their illness. Many lose their insurance coverage as a result of losing their jobs. Three out of five can’t afford to visit a doctor or dentist when they needed to. 

The first two years after a job loss is the most critical time as this is when the single parent files. The Family and Medical Leave Act allows many workers to retain health coverage while they care for sick family members, but it doesn’t provide any income.  As a single parent on one income, that could be a devastating proposition...we have kids to support too!

The American Bankruptcy Institute estimates that fewer than four percent of filings are by people who could actually pay their debts. Many debtors put off declaring bankrupt until they have lost their telephone service (40 percent), gone without necessary medicine (43 percent), or been too poor to buy food (19 percent) at least once.

If you conclude that this is your best option for a fresh start, here are some tips:

*First, find out if you're eligible under Chapter 7, Chapter 13-or not at all.
*Hire a lawyer if you have any doubts. Many will say "Don't listen to anyone who tells you that he handled his own filing and everything went just fine," says James Caher, co-author of the Personal-Bankruptcy-Dummies-Business-Finance book above.
*Remember that the new law requires you to get credit counseling before you can petition.
If foreclosure on your home is a possibility, contact an attorney immediately.
*This process does not necessarily wipe out debts like mortgages, child support and taxes. If you have a pension, 401(k), retirement account or life insurance, check your state laws to see if they are protected.
*Be prepared to provide detailed information on your assets and income. Be truthful, and don't try to hide property. You must list all creditors, liabilities and expenditures, too.
*To pay costs of filing, you can sell assets or ask for a loan from an employer, friend or relative. Be sure to tell them your intentions.

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