Considering Bankruptcy: Where Do I Start?

So often, the first sentence I hear from a prospective new client goes like this: “ Hi, I’ve been referred to you for help and I know I need help, but I don’t even know where to begin asking questions because there is so much I don’t know.”

Fair enough and help you determine if either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 is a viable option for you.
Once we talk and puts you on a dead-end path: The longer you delay dealing with your financial challenges, the fewer options you leave yourself.

Try to remember that filing for bankruptcy relief is just another tool in a tool box of possible financial solutions. Filing a bankruptcy petition can be a pretty big hammer, so I would never advise using it to kill a fly. However, if you look at this list of problems as you consider whether you should file, and you can tick off more than a couple items, it’s time to talk to an attorney to educate yourself about your options.

  • My debt is more than my annual salary, not including car or home loans.
  • My payments are over 25 percent of my take-home pay.
  • I am frequently late on my payments.
  • I buy necessary items like food, gas or clothing on credit.
  • I am considering a loan to pay other loans or debts.
  • My debts are increasing monthly.
  • I frequently need cash advances or borrow from friends and relatives.
  • I have medical bills over $5,000.
  • I owe income taxes I am unable to pay.
  • I am being sued.
  • I pay 20 percent interest on most of my debt.
  • Creditors are calling.
  • I am “robbing Peter to pay Paul”.
  • I owe more on my car than it is worth.
  • I can’t afford car insurance.
  • I have no savings.
  • My wages are being garnished.
  • I have been denied additional credit.
  • My mortgage payments, or rent, is late, or behind.
  • We are getting divorced and have too many bills to pay.
  • Our financial difficulties are causing marital problems

Each case and/or (b) that was not anywhere close to as bad as I imagined it would be for me.
Talk to me sooner, it’s not as bad as you think it will be.

Categories: Bankruptcy
Marji knows her stuff. I’m very satisfied with the results I got working with her.”
– Dan F.

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About Marji Hanson

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My law practice focuses exclusively on consumer bankruptcy law. I can help you decide if bankruptcy will solve your problems and which program, Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, is best suited to meet your financial needs. I have learned about the bankruptcy system in the District of Utah from the inside out.

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