When you turn retirement age in America, you generally look at slowing down a bit, perhaps stopping work and enjoying some time with the grandkids. Unfortunately, things change quickly. Sickness and hospital stays can lead to mounting medical bills that become unbearable. This sad situation often leads to retired individuals returning back to the work force in order to make years of payments to doctors, hospitals and other medical services. Today, I’d like to share with you some helpful tips on how you can prepare for these medical expenses in the future.
As a bankruptcy attorney, I am often asked by prospective clients if they should wait to file bankruptcy. Some of them believe that the job market may soon turn around so they can find better employment. Others want to wait and pay what they can by living off their life savings. Still others just don’t want to do it until their backs are up against the wall. If you are currently struggling with mounting debt, you should ask yourself: Why wait?
Have you ever taken out a payday loan? People often go in there thinking that it will be just a one-time thing, but it never is. If you haven’t taken out this loan before, don’t do it. If you have, you know how harsh their repayment terms are and that it is almost impossible to pay the loan off. Their interest rates are incredibly high and their collection strategy will take all of your money leaving nothing for your rent or food. It is a never-ending cycle.
Now, more than ever, it is time to take control of your credit card debt. The Federal Reserve reports that overall consumer borrowing in the United States increased by 8.8 percent in November 2017, the most that it has in the past 2 years. Specifically, credit card debts jumped to 1.02 trillion dollars, which is the highest level on record.
In a recent study by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, researchers have determined that older Americans (those who are older than 55 years of age) are increasingly more in debt than in prior years. The study states that in 1992, 53.8 percent of these families carried debt from month to month where in 2016 that number reached 68 percent. And it continues to rise.
What would you do if the air conditioning goes out in your house tomorrow or if the transmission goes out in your car? Could you afford it? Would you have to go without food or electricity to cover the minor emergency?
Sadly, most Americans live from paycheck to paycheck with nothing in savings. This tragic truth is a recipe for disaster. It is not a question of “if” an emergency will pop up, but “when”. We know they are out there and will raise their ugly head at some point and we need to be ready.
Many people have the belief that once you file for bankruptcy, you will never have credit again. Thus, you will never be able to purchase a car, home or even have a credit card. This belief is simply untrue. Quite often, I see people who come to my office and need to file bankruptcy to resolve some other issues, but have this false belief of never being able to purchase on credit again. The truth is that you can rebuild your credit after bankruptcy, making it possible to buy a car, purchase a home, etc.
Over the past 10 years, the housing market has taken a big hit from the economic recession in the United States. Foreclosures and bankruptcies have both been affected by this financial crisis. Things are now slowing beginning to change allowing consumers to once again enter the housing market to buy the home of their dreams.
Perhaps like you, many of my clients have been threatened by collection agencies that they will go to jail for not paying their bills. I am not saying that it is impossible, because there are certain types of debts that can be criminally prosecuted if not paid, but the vast majority of debts are not a criminal offense. In fact, there have not been any Debtors’ Prisons in the United States since the 1850s.
We respect and guarantee the confidentiality of your case and personal information