If you’ve ever found yourself upside down in debt, you may have considered filing for bankruptcy. For many, this is the last resort, but there are numerous factors that go into determining whether or not this is the right choice for you. Deciding to file bankruptcy is undoubtedly a tough decision and one that almost every person confronting struggles with. There are several alternatives to bankruptcy that will help you avoid having to file, however, these may not be realistic for everyone. While adopting – and sticking to – a monthly budget may be the answer for some, this is not always feasible. If you’ve considered all other repayment alternatives and gone over your options with a knowledgeable financial advisor, it may be time to consider bankruptcy. If you decide to go this route, it is important that you enlist the services of a bankruptcy attorney. Regardless of which type of bankruptcy you file – Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 are the most common – you will benefit from the expertise of a bankruptcy lawyer. The entire process of filing is a confusing one, and one misstep could spell disaster for you in the future. Before moving forward with filing bankruptcy in the state of Oklahoma, go over the information below and ask yourself if this is truly the right move for you.
Assess Your Financial Situation
To get a better idea of your financial situation and possibly get started with the bankruptcy process, consider asking yourself the following questions:
- Do you only make minimum payments on your credit card?
- Are bill collectors calling you?
- Does the thought of sorting out your finances scare you?
- Do you use credit cards to pay for necessities?
- Are you considering debt consolidation?
- Are you unsure how much you actually owe?
If you answered yes to two or more of these questions, you may want to give your financial situation a little more thought, at the very least. In a nutshell, bankruptcy is when you owe more than you can afford to pay. To get a better idea of where you are financially, take an inventory of all your liquid assets. Remember to consider retirement funds, stocks, bonds, real estate, vehicles, college savings accounts, and any other non-bank account funds during this step. Once you’ve come up with a rough estimate, you can move on to collecting and adding up your bills and credit cards statements. If your debt is more than the value of your assets, declaring bankruptcy may be the right move for you.
How to Declare Bankruptcy
There are a couple different ways to go into bankruptcy. The most common route is to voluntarily file for bankruptcy, however, creditors can also ask to the court to force a person to file. Before proceeding any further, it is recommended that you consult a bankruptcy lawyer in order to figure out the best way to move forward. There are several different methods for filing for bankruptcy, all of which have their pros and cons. Again, bankruptcy is a very complicated process that requires a lot of thought and detail.