Bankruptcy in the Wake of Coronavirus
People all over the world are facing financial strain because of the Coronavirus pandemic. It may feel as though you will never recover or that you will lose everything because you cannot afford to pay the bills. There are many ways to get the help you need and there are tools to help you get out from under the crushing weight of debt. Your financial burden is not permanent. Here are some things to consider.
Many companies are working with consumers
Businesses that you pay every month for things like credit cards, mortgage, car insurance, cable, etc. are working with people to delay payments. This is a great short-term solution and it allows families to focus on the things they need such as food. If you are feeling financial pressure because you have been furloughed or laid off, call your creditors/utility companies, and ask if they are assisting people affected by the pandemic. Chances are, they will work with you.
If your creditors are not providing enough assistance
Unfortunately, some businesses either cannot or will not offer assistance to their customers. After all, businesses are being affected by the economy just like individuals. If this is the case, you should contact your creditors anyway and keep track of all communication with names, dates, and outcomes. These are things that can be useful if you have to seek further financial relief in the future.
What if you are in too much debt after the pandemic clears?
If you are in irreparable debt when the economy gets back to normal, you have options. Bankruptcy has a stigma, but it is actually a tool, legally afforded to you to help you get back on track. Chapter 7 personal bankruptcy allows you to get rid of unsecured debt and get the fresh start you deserve.
A quick review of Chapter 7 personal bankruptcy
Chapter 7 personal bankruptcy can be done by an individual, but it is highly recommended that you use an attorney that is familiar with the process especially given the unique circumstances we are all facing. After the initial filing, creditors will be notified that you have enlisted the services of an attorney and they will stop contacting you. Then:
- The court will appoint a trustee to take stock of your assets and debt;
- Secured debt will be analyzed and certain assets can be liquidated to offset debt;
- Unsecured debt can be discharged or offset with the liquidation of assets;
- If there is remaining secured debt, payment plans will be established;
- You move on!
Bankruptcy does come with negative credit score implications. For 7-10 years, the bankruptcy will show on your credit report. However, this does not mean you are ineligible for lines of credit.
If you or a loved one is facing financial stress because of the current pandemic, contact the attorneys at Dsouza and Strachan Law Group. They have the knowledge and experience you need to get back on track. They are available in this uncertain time to help you navigate the complex topic of bankruptcy. Contact Dsouza and Strachan today for a free consultation.