As we've mentioned previously on this blog, bankruptcy is not automatic. That is to say that the mere act of filing a bankruptcy petition is not enough to secure the fresh financial start that many petitioners seek. In fact, there may be some situations where a bankruptcy petition is contested, especially by creditors who seek to recoup their financial interests. While the vast majority of those who seek a Chapter 7 bankruptcy are either successfully discharged or have their bankruptcy converted to another form, there are still ways that bankruptcy discharge can be denied.
Far too many Texans are overwhelmed with debt. Regardless of how they ended up in that position, they don't deserve to be subjected to seemingly endless creditor harassment. Yet, despite valiant efforts by state and federal regulators, many of these debtors are subjected to annoying, and sometimes frightening debt collection practices. This is why those who are struggling with their debt may want to ensure that they are familiar with the protections afforded by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Doing so may end creditor harassment.
Although there has been a lot of talk lately about the improving economy, many Americans are still struggling with debt. In fact, The American Bankruptcy Institute found that bankruptcy filings increased by 5% in July compared to June. That amounts to more than 64,000 bankruptcy filings last month alone, with over 450,000 petitions being filed so far this year. So that means that Texans who are finding themselves overwhelmed with debt certainly aren't alone.
It may seem as if everyone these days has at least one credit card. Though many people use these cards for various reasons, they can have their pros and cons. For some Texas residents, using a credit card may help them make an important purchase while allowing them to pay it off over time, and for other individuals, having a credit card may only result in their spending getting out of hand.
A few weeks ago on the blog we discussed how consumer debt is continuing to grow. One of the major driving forces behind this debt is auto loans. The average cost of a new car today hovers around $37,000, which is more or just slightly less than many Texans make per year. This means that financing is usually required for both new and used vehicle purchases, which has driven up automotive loans by 75% since 2009. In total, Americans owe about $1.2 trillion in auto loan debt.
Many Texans are struggling to get by financially on a day-to-day basis. For these individuals, the wait until their next paycheck can be grueling. In many instances they are just one unexpected expense away from financial catastrophe. Many people in such circumstances have tried to find debt relief through personal loans or payday loans. Payday loans have come under intense scrutiny lately, though, because of their high interests rates and the vicious debt cycle they perpetuate.