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Be careful what you do with your tax return before bankruptcy

Every tax season, millions of Americans rely on their tax returns to help them catch up on bills and find a little extra for special purchases.

Unfortunately, tax returns can become complicated issues once you file for bankruptcy. Once you've filed, any tax return you are due becomes a part of your bankruptcy estate and you aren't entitled to spend it until the trustee determines if any of that money is exempt.

Mistakes to avoid in Chapter 13 bankruptcies

A Chapter 13 bankruptcy, offers debtors the opportunity to escape insurmountable debts through a tightly-controlled debt-repayment plan over several years.

Some consumers won't realize any benefit from filing for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy instead of filing for a Chapter 7. However, if you have a lot of equity in your home, car and other assets, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy often makes the most sense because you can usually retain those things.

Don't be afraid to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy

A lot of people are terrified at the idea of filing for bankruptcy, for a number of reasons.

In reality, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will have a negative effect on your credit for a while. There's no avoiding that. However, it's important to keep some perspective about the situation.

More older Americans filing for bankruptcy in modern economy

Not so long ago, businesses had responsibilities toward employees that existed well into retirement. Workers would often stay with the same company their entire adult life and retire with a pension, sponsored both by an employer and by current employees at the company. Unfortunately, modern capitalism has effectively done away with the vast majority of pension programs.

Combine that with a diminishing pool of workers contributing to Social Security, and you have a lot of financial strain for older adults in the United States. Health insurance has also changed, with many employer-sponsored retirement plans now cutting back on the benefits they offer or creating more difficult requirements for potential enrollees.

Credit card debt: A big issue for older millennials?

A recent study indicates there is one type of debt that might loom particularly large for older millennials. It may surprise you to hear that it is not student loan debt. Rather, it is credit card debt.

The study was by Northwestern Mutual. Among the things it looked at was how much of the average debt burden of older millennials (individuals ages 25-34) was credit card debt. The study found that such debt made up about a fourth of this burden. In comparison, only around 16 percent of the average debt burden consisted of student loan debt.

Those battling breast cancer twice as likely to file bankruptcy

Cancer is often an aggressive, frightening disease. It can develop in many parts of the body, but for women, breast cancer is one of the more common forms. Many people don't realize they have breast cancer until they find a lump or start developing symptoms. Getting diagnosed with breast cancer can feel terrifying.

Luckily, medical treatments have improved significantly in the last few decades. The survival rate for breast cancer and other serious forms of cancer has gone up significantly. Unfortunately, those who must undergo intensive therapies for breast cancer are also confronted with the potential for significant medical debt that persists for years.

Is bankruptcy becoming more common for the elderly?

When American's spend their life at work, they expect, and are told, that they will be able to relax in retirement with a hefty nest-egg. Unfortunately, this scenario does not always pan out.

More and more seniors are facing bankruptcy after retirement. A 2018 study shows that senior citizens over 65 are filing for retirement at triple the rate of previous years. Just over 12 percent of those who file for bankruptcy are 65 or older. Why is this the case?

Fiancé of former governor files Chapter 13

The woman who was known as the first lady of another state at one time has filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection. This action will allow her to create a repayment plan to pay back her creditors over three to five years. The exact amount of her repayment plan, as well as how long she will have to pay it, will depend to some extent, on how much money she has made of late.

The reason this story attracted national media attention, including the attention of a Kentucky media outlet, is that the women was embroiled in a scandal. That scandal led to the resignation of her partner, the governor of another state.

Common credit card marketing tricks to bait consumers into debt

It's no coincidence how turning 18-years-old can make you a visible target for credit card offers. The hype and allure is all over the marketing material that appears to give young consumers an easy way to get what they want apart from their parents help. Unfortunately, the debt trap is cunningly set for people of all ages, but especially those who are young and uneducated on personal finance.

Many people find themselves struggling for years with high credit card debt that never seems to get resolved. Credit card marketing traps cause many people to fall into a downward spiral of money problems, until landing on the rock-hard surface of bankruptcy.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is not something to handle alone

While many Louisville, Kentucky, residents are quite adept at handling most of their financial affairs without help, there are some financial challenges one should just not try to tackle without help.

Among those challenges include dealing with the IRS in a full-blown tax audit and deciding exactly when it is safe to retire. As relevant to this blog, though, bankruptcy, especially Chapter 13 bankruptcy, is also not one generally something a person should try to face without legal assistance.

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