Senior Bankruptcy

Senior BankruptcyI’m a senior too.

I know well how hard seniors have been hit by the “Double Whammy.”

We did what we were taught to do.

Work hard.  Sacrifice for our kids.

But, the economic reality today is much different than the one we expected.

As a veteran financial turnaround attorney for consumers (my way of describing my role as a board certified consumer bankruptcy specialist and certified credit counselor), I know there is often a cure for the economic ills that challenge us.

Our Golden Years shouldn’t be tarnished this way.

And, thanks to our Federal Bankruptcy Laws, I can help you quickly recover credit after wiping out your bills.

Financial peace is possible.

FACT:

Across the country, a 5x increase in older Americans filing bankruptcy since 1991.

I’ve been filing bankruptcy since 1986.

I can positively state that here in Southern Ohio, there are a lot more “senior bankruptcy” cases.

FACT:

For those over 65, the bankruptcy filing rate has doubled.

More seniors filing bankruptcy than ever before!

Why?

Lots of reasons.

For most, it’s rising health costs and (no surprise) many can’t afford medications they need.

FACT:

Seniors pay 20% of their income on health care (compared to 12% for previous generations)!

Senior Bankruptcy is caused by a “Double Whammy”

Whammy #1 – Everything Costs More.

A loaf of bread costs over a buck. (I’ve seen some over 2$!)

Gas over $3.00 a gallon.

(Remember when gas was 23 cents a gallon and they pumped it?)

It’s expensive just to buy basics for your table.

Whammy #2 – No Increase in Retirement Income

When your income stays low, you have no choice but to cut back.

Where can you cut back?

There’s no easy answer.

What I am seeing, and it breaks my heart, is seniors cutting back on health care.

Skipping prescriptions that are “not absolutely necessary.”

(If they weren’t necessary, why would you have the prescription?)

Dental care.

Routine checkups because even the co-pay is more than they can afford.

What are your Options with Senior Bankruptcy?

What are people doing when they face these problems?

Option One.

Cut back.

Do without.

Without prescriptions.

Without routine care.

Without a balanced diet.

Without heat in the winter.

Without air conditioning in the summer.

Without any non-essential travel.

Without replacing worn-out clothing and shoes.

This is a tragedy.

(for most, a needless one)

Option Two.

Live on borrowed money.

Borrowed from retirement funds.

Borrowed from family.

Borrowed on credit cards.

Borrowing on their home equity that they painstakingly built up over their working lives.

(This is TRAGIC! Because your equity is PROTECTED in bankruptcy!)

They borrow because they don’t know (and are afraid to ask) about other options that could solve a lot of problems.

Instead they make mistakes.

Make matters worse.

Borrowing doesn’t work.

Not forever.

But I (sadly) see seniors who I can help, but who I could have helped a lot more, had they only seen me sooner.

Option Three.

Sell property

They sell what they own.

Take distributions on their retirement, so that, instead of paying them the interest, they deplete the capital.

The asset that was supposed to generate steady, long-term income is consumed, and no longer there to support them.

Like killing and eating the goose that is supposed to be laying golden eggs during your golden years.

Sometimes they sell their home!

This is especially tragic, because a paid-for home is protected in bankruptcy.  But after you sell it, and the money is gone, you have to pay rent for the rest of your life, when you once had a house that would last for the rest of your life.

Please don’t do this!

Option Four.

Rely on family.

We are seeing a return to what was common in an earlier time.

Years ago, it was common for parents to raise their children and then when the parents retired, they helped with the grand children while their adult children helped take care of them.

I’m seeing a lot more of this today.

(In fact, my wife and I are taking care of our “over eighty” family member who has lived with us for years now)

We often need to rely on extended family.

We see this more and more these days.

What was old is new again.

By necessity, we are seeing a return to the days of years gone by when adult children took care of older family members.

Option 5

Senior Bankruptcy

The biggest block to most seniors is psychological.

We are “hard wired” to pay our bills.

We think of ourselves as “self-reliant” and “independent.”

We have often sacrificed, put our own needs aside, and helped our children –often beyond our financial ability.

We were taught, and taught our children:

“Pay Your Bills.”

“Be Responsible”

So, just the thought of “Senior Bankruptcy” seems, somehow, wrong to us.

It shouldn’t be.

Think, for a moment, about a close friend, who comes to you with serious financial problems and tells you that he might need to file bankruptcy.

Then he explains that he discovered he can keep his house and cars and wipe out the medical bills and credit cards that are more than he can afford, and that his budget will be balanced and he will be able to sleep at night again.

You would support him without hesitation!

So why is it that you can’t look in your mirror and show yourself the same kind of support, compassion and understanding?

There is no good answer to this question.

Somehow, what is “OK” for our friend is “NOT OK” for us.

The Senior Bankruptcy Options

There are two types of Senior Bankruptcy options.

Both work, but one will be better for you, depending on your needs, particularly your health concerns.

Senior Bankruptcy.

New laws solve an old problem.

Back in the 80’s, we had a really serious problem for seniors seeking bankruptcy.

The home they worked hard to protect was often at risk.

No More!  New laws now protect your home.  It’s safe.

As is all the rest of the property you have worked hard for.

Retirement funds are fully protected.

When it comes to senior bankruptcy, the only thing you have to fear is fear itself.

Fear of loss.

Fear of embarrassment.

Fear about your self-image.

But wait!

Tell me, truthfully.

Would YOU look down on someone who really cannot afford to pay for necessities, like healthcare, AND debt which Federal Law says can be wiped out and forgiven?

Of course not!

Dischargeable debt SHOULD be discharged, if it threatens your health and well-being.

Chapter 7

Chapter 7 is available to most of the seniors I represent.

Bankruptcy law recognizes that retirement income and social security only go so far.

In fact, your social security income is NOT EVEN COUNTED in the “means test” which we use to determine eligibility for chapter 7.

This means that seniors are actually favored in this test!

Most all seniors I see do qualify to keep all that they own, and wipe out debts they cannot afford to pay.

They keep their home, their cars, their retirement.

EVERYTHING.

Chapter 13

Although most seniors do qualify for chapter 7, there are situations where a chapter 13 is a safer option.

Safer, because Chapter 13 offers a “safety net.”

When you file a chapter 7, you eliminate 100% of the dischargeable debt, but you forfeit the ability to file another chapter 7 (even when something bad happens and you really needed to) for eight full years.

By contrast, there is no such forfeiture in chapter 13.

And, you can eliminate 99% of the dischargeable debt (not 100% but almost all), and you keep your options open.

In chapter 13, if something bad, expensive, unforeseen, happens, you can convert the case to chapter 7.

You can dismiss the chapter 13 (dismissal is practically impossible in chapter 7), and start over.

You can modify the chapter 13, in some situations, to address whatever life throws at you.

In other words, you have a “Plan B” or “Backup Plan” to meet life situations that threaten your finances, and your ability to meet life’s needs.

There’s a lot more to this than meets the eye.

And, a lot more thought and analysis goes into a senior bankruptcy than most attorneys I know give, most of the time.

As a senior myself, I am constantly thinking about my clients’ lives after they retire, and how they will be able to meet the ever-increasing cost of living.

Senior bankruptcy is an option which should be considered alongside all other options,

Not a last resort.

If it makes sense for you, then you really owe it to yourself and your family to find out more.

The consultation I offer is free.

The peace of mind you get is priceless.

 

Senior Bankruptcy

I’m a senior too.

I know well how hard seniors have been hit by the “Double Whammy.”

We did what we were taught to do.

Work hard.  Sacrifice for our kids.

But, the economic reality today is much different than the one we expected.

As a veteran financial turnaround attorney for consumers (my way of describing my role as a board certified consumer bankruptcy specialist and certified credit counselor), I know there is often a cure for the economic ills that challenge us.

Our Golden Years shouldn’t be tarnished this way.

And, thanks to our Federal Bankruptcy Laws, I can help you quickly recover credit after wiping out your bills.

Financial peace is possible.

FACT:

Across the country, a 5x increase in older Americans filing bankruptcy since 1991.

I’ve been filing bankruptcy since 1986.

I can positively state that here in Southern Ohio, there are a lot more “senior bankruptcy” cases.

FACT:

For those over 65, the bankruptcy filing rate has doubled.

More seniors filing bankruptcy than ever before!

Why?

Lots of reasons.

For most, it’s rising health costs and (no surprise) many can’t afford medications they need.

FACT:

Seniors pay 20% of their income on health care (compared to 12% for previous generations)!

Senior Bankruptcy is caused by a “Double Whammy”

Whammy #1 – Everything Costs More.

A loaf of bread costs over a buck. (I’ve seen some over 2$!)

Gas over $3.00 a gallon.

(Remember when gas was 23 cents a gallon and they pumped it?)

It’s expensive just to buy basics for your table.

Whammy #2 – No Increase in Retirement Income

When your income stays low, you have no choice but to cut back.

Where can you cut back?

There’s no easy answer.

What I am seeing, and it breaks my heart, is seniors cutting back on health care.

Skipping prescriptions that are “not absolutely necessary.”

(If they weren’t necessary, why would you have the prescription?)

Dental care.

Routine checkups because even the co-pay is more than they can afford.

What are your Options with Senior Bankruptcy?

What are people doing when they face these problems?

Option One.

Cut back.

Do without.

Without prescriptions.

Without routine care.

Without a balanced diet.

Without heat in the winter.

Without air conditioning in the summer.

Without any non-essential travel.

Without replacing worn-out clothing and shoes.

This is a tragedy.

(for most, a needless one)

Option Two.

Live on borrowed money.

Borrowed from retirement funds.

Borrowed from family.

Borrowed on credit cards.

Borrowing on their home equity that they painstakingly built up over their working lives.

(This is TRAGIC! Because your equity is PROTECTED in bankruptcy!)

They borrow because they don’t know (and are afraid to ask) about other options that could solve a lot of problems.

Instead they make mistakes.

Make matters worse.

Borrowing doesn’t work.

Not forever.

But I (sadly) see seniors who I can help, but who I could have helped a lot more, had they only seen me sooner.

Option Three.

Sell property

They sell what they own.

Take distributions on their retirement, so that, instead of paying them the interest, they deplete the capital.

The asset that was supposed to generate steady, long-term income is consumed, and no longer there to support them.

Like killing and eating the goose that is supposed to be laying golden eggs during your golden years.

Sometimes they sell their home!

This is especially tragic, because a paid-for home is protected in bankruptcy.  But after you sell it, and the money is gone, you have to pay rent for the rest of your life, when you once had a house that would last for the rest of your life.

Please don’t do this!

Option Four.

Rely on family.

We are seeing a return to what was common in an earlier time.

Years ago, it was common for parents to raise their children and then when the parents retired, they helped with the grand children while their adult children helped take care of them.

I’m seeing a lot more of this today.

(In fact, my wife and I are taking care of our “over eighty” family member who has lived with us for years now)

We often need to rely on extended family.

We see this more and more these days.

What was old is new again.

By necessity, we are seeing a return to the days of years gone by when adult children took care of older family members.

Option 5

Senior Bankruptcy

The biggest block to most seniors is psychological.

We are “hard wired” to pay our bills.

We think of ourselves as “self-reliant” and “independent.”

We have often sacrificed, put our own needs aside, and helped our children –often beyond our financial ability.

We were taught, and taught our children:

“Pay Your Bills.”

“Be Responsible”

So, just the thought of “Senior Bankruptcy” seems, somehow, wrong to us.

It shouldn’t be.

Think, for a moment, about a close friend, who comes to you with serious financial problems and tells you that he might need to file bankruptcy.

Then he explains that he discovered he can keep his house and cars and wipe out the medical bills and credit cards that are more than he can afford, and that his budget will be balanced and he will be able to sleep at night again.

You would support him without hesitation!

So why is it that you can’t look in your mirror and show yourself the same kind of support, compassion and understanding?

There is no good answer to this question.

Somehow, what is “OK” for our friend is “NOT OK” for us.

The Senior Bankruptcy Options

There are two types of Senior Bankruptcy options.

Both work, but one will be better for you, depending on your needs, particularly your health concerns.

Senior Bankruptcy.

New laws solve an old problem.

Back in the 80’s, we had a really serious problem for seniors seeking bankruptcy.

The home they worked hard to protect was often at risk.

No More!  New laws now protect your home.  It’s safe.

As is all the rest of the property you have worked hard for.

Retirement funds are fully protected.

When it comes to senior bankruptcy, the only thing you have to fear is fear itself.

Fear of loss.

Fear of embarrassment.

Fear about your self-image.

But wait!

Tell me, truthfully.

Would YOU look down on someone who really cannot afford to pay for necessities, like healthcare, AND debt which Federal Law says can be wiped out and forgiven?

Of course not!

Dischargeable debt SHOULD be discharged, if it threatens your health and well-being.

Chapter 7

Chapter 7 is available to most of the seniors I represent.

Bankruptcy law recognizes that retirement income and social security only go so far.

In fact, your social security income is NOT EVEN COUNTED in the “means test” which we use to determine eligibility for chapter 7.

This means that seniors are actually favored in this test!

Most all seniors I see do qualify to keep all that they own, and wipe out debts they cannot afford to pay.

They keep their home, their cars, their retirement.

EVERYTHING.

Chapter 13

Although most seniors do qualify for chapter 7, there are situations where a chapter 13 is a safer option.

Safer, because Chapter 13 offers a “safety net.”

When you file a chapter 7, you eliminate 100% of the dischargeable debt, but you forfeit the ability to file another chapter 7 (even when something bad happens and you really needed to) for eight full years.

By contrast, there is no such forfeiture in chapter 13.

And, you can eliminate 99% of the dischargeable debt (not 100% but almost all), and you keep your options open.

In chapter 13, if something bad, expensive, unforeseen, happens, you can convert the case to chapter 7.

You can dismiss the chapter 13 (dismissal is practically impossible in chapter 7), and start over.

You can modify the chapter 13, in some situations, to address whatever life throws at you.

In other words, you have a “Plan B” or “Backup Plan” to meet life situations that threaten your finances, and your ability to meet life’s needs.

There’s a lot more to this than meets the eye.

And, a lot more thought and analysis goes into a senior bankruptcy than most attorneys I know give, most of the time.

As a senior myself, I am constantly thinking about my clients’ lives after they retire, and how they will be able to meet the ever-increasing cost of living.

Senior bankruptcy is an option which should be considered alongside all other options,

Not a last resort.

If it makes sense for you, then you really owe it to yourself and your family to find out more.

The consultation I offer is free.

The peace of mind you get is priceless.