Bankruptcy is designed to be a fresh start for either people or businesses. If a judge approves it, a filing can begin the process for financial recovery that may take years or be complete in a matter of months.
Bankruptcy is a fresh start, one that may come at the price of leaving some properties and assets behind. But there are some things vital to a happy and healthy life that can be preserved.
While Texas continues to show considerable economic strength, there is some suggestion that financial trouble may be affecting more Texas households now than this time last year.
Running a business can be both an exciting and stressful endeavor. While there can be some good times where a business is profitable, when the debts accumulated far exceed the value of the company, financial and operational problems can arise. In order to get through financial troubles and secure debt relief, a business may want to consider pursuing the bankruptcy process.
Financial difficulties can strike people of any age and socio-economic class. Although many individuals later in life find themselves with money troubles after suffering the loss of a job or the onset of an unexpected illness, even young adults can find themselves falling into deeper and deeper holes of debt. When this happens, indebted individuals may struggle to see a way out and secure the financial freedom they need and deserve.
Credit card debt haunts many Texans. Oftentimes individuals have to turn these lines of credit in order to make ends meet simply because their wages aren't enough to support them. In other situations, credit cards must be utilized to pay off unexpected medical debt. Others hope to use them as a mere stopgap measure to get them through to their next paycheck. Regardless of why an individual possesses credit card debt, the stark reality is that it can pose a threat to one's future financial stability.
Debt knows no bounds. Anyone can be hit with unexpected expenses, whether they are for medical treatment, to repair much needed transportation, or to make home repairs that are necessary to keep a residence habitable. Although some people are able to dig themselves out debt, others struggle to do so and instead find themselves falling deeper and deeper into a debt spiral.
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.
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.
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.