Retirement & Chapter 7
Since 1986, I’ve been filing retirement bankruptcy cases for my clients.
Smart seniors who tell me, “I see the writing on the wall… I need to get rid of these bills. I just can’t afford to live like I used to,” have been filing retirement bankruptcy for years.
It’s like an “open secret” that seniors overlook, and struggle with, falling into the “sweatbox” of debt and despair.
Recently, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of retirement bankruptcy cases being filed.
This is exactly as it should be!
The number of Americans 65 and older filing bankruptcy has TRIPLED since 1991.
The Consumer Bankruptcy Project studied senior bankruptcy cases and surveyed those who filed.
A “Double Whammy” of increasing costs, especially health care costs, and declining income has hit our older population particularly hard.
And, when we are older, we have less time to catch up. Or no time to catch up.
It’s obvious that if you cannot increase your income, you have no choice but to decrease your expenses.
But what can you cut?
And how much good will it do?
Robbing your retirement plan to supplement your ability to pay debt payments will ensure you run out of money sooner, not later.
The sensible thing to do, and the reason that more retirement bankruptcy cases are being filed, is to cut the debt out.
Don’t pay the bills with your retirement fund.
Discharge the debt in retirement bankruptcy.
WAITING TO FILE CAN HURT YOU.
That’s the headline from a recent article I read on the internet.
I knew that.
The article says that people delay filing because they see it as an admission of failure.
I knew that.
I have experienced it.
And so have many of my clients, who, nearing retirement or in retirement, come to me for help figuring out what to do when the expenses exceed income.
The longer you wait, the more your savings are drained.
Yet, that is EXACTLY what far too many do.
The Consumer Bankruptcy Report states that 66% of older Americans who filed were “long strugglers” who “endured the sweatbox” of asset depletion and debt collections, while going without basic necessities and medical care.
These “long strugglers” delayed getting the debt relief they need and deserve for more than two years.
Nearly a third waited 5 or more years.
The longer they stayed “in the sweatbox” the worse their overall financial situation grew.
We all agree on the concept of anybody being able to “get a fresh start.”
It is fundamental to our American values, traditions . . . our way of life.
But, as a veteran bankruptcy attorney for over 32 years, I can tell you this . . .
The older my client, the more “stigma” they feel is attached to the idea of filing bankruptcy.
And this is true even for those who actively support OTHERS to file, if they need to.
Sadly, what’s “ok” for someone else, is not ok for them.
It’s a destructive, “double-standard” they use on themselves.
How about you?
Do YOU feel that its ok for someone else to get the debt relief they need, when they clearly need it, but NOT ok for you?
If you feel this way, you’re not alone.
MOST people feel this way.
As a senior myself, I understand very well how this feels.
But I know it’s not true.
And, intellectually, we know this makes no sense.
But in our hearts, it’s how we feel.
And this is a big reason that more retirement bankruptcy cases NEVER get filed.
People actually DIE in the “sweatbox” while trying to pay bills that our Federal Laws state they are eligible to discharge.
Being retired doesn’t mean you have to do without basic necessities.
You have options.
Find out how this works.
The call is free.
But the peace of mind you’ll get is priceless.