Putting Off Bankruptcy Can Be a Costly Mistake
If you have serious debt problems, getting prompt advice from a lawyer is one of the best things you can do. It costs nothing to discuss your financial situation with an attorney, and it can help you avoid costly mistakes.
At The Law Offices of John E. Mufson in Delray Beach, Florida, we offer a free initial consultation to discuss your debt problems and explore solutions.
Avoiding Bankruptcy Mistakes
Here are some of the common bankruptcy mistakes that people make:
- Dipping into 401(k) accounts to pay debts: Retirement benefits are fully protected against liquidation under the bankruptcy laws. Your retirement account is your nest egg. If you have serious debt problems, it may be better to discharge those debts by filing for bankruptcy, rather than wasting assets that you would be entitled to keep.
- Robbing Peter to pay Paul: If you let your mortgage payment slip to pay off credit card bills, you could end up facing foreclosure. Things like credit card bills are unsecured, meaning that you may be able to wipe out those debts by filing for bankruptcy. Secured debts such as your home mortgage have to be paid or you will lose the asset. However in some cases second mortgages can be eliminated in Chapter 13.
- Not disclosing all of your debts to your lawyer. If you file for bankruptcy, it’s important to tell your lawyer about all of your debts so that you can achieve as many benefits as possible. You can obtain a listing of your debts through a credit report.
- Not disclosing all of your assets to your lawyer, including assets you have transferred to someone else in the past two years: You could lose those assets or be ineligible to discharge your debts. You could even be prosecuted for bankruptcy fraud.
- Waiting too long to file bankruptcy: If you don’t address debt problems, those debts will only increase and the collection efforts by the creditors will increase and eventually lawsuits will be served on you.