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Michael D. Hart, P.C.
Helping You Move Forward Free Of Financial Problems
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Posts tagged "Chapter 7 Bankruptcy"

Credit cards help pay for the holidays

Virginia residents may not necessarily be against using a credit card to fund their holiday shopping. A study from Creditcards.com found that 51% of respondents who had credit card debt were willing to go deeper into debt during the holidays. It also found that 50% of male respondents who had credit cards had no problem spending more on gifts and other related seasonal expenses. Only 41% of female respondents who had credit cards said the same thing.

The cost of bankruptcy

Many people living in Virginia and around the country struggle with high levels of debt. While most people genuinely want to pay their creditors, the level of debt could be out of control, and an individual or couple may not be able to ever repay what they owe. In such cases, bankruptcy is an option.

Bankruptcy may be right for some people

For some Virginia residents, filing for bankruptcy can be a drastic step. For others, though, it can be a tool that will help them get back on their feet and start over with a clean slate. In addition to finding out if a person actually qualifies for bankruptcy, there are other things to consider when deciding if this is the right choice.

Knowing when it's time to file for bankruptcy

Bankruptcy could be an effective way for individuals in Virginia and elsewhere to get a handle on their finances. However, there are many factors an individual should consider before doing so. For instance, the type of debt a person has may determine if bankruptcy is right for that individual. If a person is unable to cover basic expenses each month, it may be time to file for protection from creditors.

Student loan debt can be crippling

Debt seems to be a way of life for many Virginia residents. In a perfect world, it would be better to first earn the money before spending it, but there is a general concept of what is considered "good" debt. A mortgage on a home, for instance, falls into that category because it is a long-term investment that not only is tax deductible but may be instrumental in earning money if the house appreciates in value over time. Student loan debt is also typically a positive debt but not if it becomes overwhelming to the debtor.

Different bankruptcies impact credit differently

The effect that filing for bankruptcy has on a credit report varies based on the type of bankruptcy that is filed. For individuals who live in Virginia, the most common bankruptcy filings are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. A bankruptcy filing under Chapter 7 might stay on a credit report for up to 10 years while a Chapter 13 filing might be reported for seven years. However, the effect on the credit score will diminish as time goes on.

Disabled veterans receive more protections in bankruptcy

Military veterans in Virginia may face a difficult time adjusting to their time after service, especially when it comes to financial issues. As a result, many veterans face escalating debt and may be forced to file for bankruptcy. Under a 2019 federal law, the Honoring American Veterans in Extreme Need Act -- the HAVEN Act -- disabled military veterans receive some additional protections during the bankruptcy process. This can be important in helping people decide to file and seek debt relief.

How to time a bankruptcy filing

Debtors in Virginia and throughout the country who are struggling to keep up with their bills may be able to take advantage of Chapter 7 bankruptcy. However, there are limits to how many times an individual can file. In most cases, an individual will need to wait eight years after a Chapter 7 case is discharged before they can file another liquidation bankruptcy case. Those who file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy must wait six years before filing for a liquidation bankruptcy.

Tips for dealing with a debt collection lawsuit

Some people in Virginia who have unpaid debt might eventually face one or more lawsuits. This can be stressful, and individuals who have no money may be tempted to ignore them. However, there are steps people can take to defend themselves against these lawsuits and possibly get them dismissed. Furthermore, failing to respond can lead to a judgment by default, resulting in such actions as wages being garnished. In responding to the lawsuit, people should not admit that they are liable for the debt.

Student loan debt is creating an affordability crisis

Every year, almost one in three Americans who file Chapter 7 bankruptcies are burdened by student loans. However, this kind of debt is not usually dischargeable in Virginia or any other state. When filers have these loans, they usually account for about half of their total financial obligations. These were two of the discoveries made by researchers who studied 1,083 Chapter 7 cases from the financial online marketplace LendEDU.

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