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I'm thinking of filing for bankruptcy. I have over $25,000 in credit card debt, am behind on my house payment, and my husband hasn't been making as much as normal due to less work.

My only problem is that it costs so much to file. I'm afraid of getting sued, and a couple of the creditors are talking about sending the debts to a lawyer. I can't come up with the $1500 it would take to hire a lawyer anytime soon. But since we do have income, we don't qualify to file for free.

Are there any other options out there?

Have you contacted your motgage company and the card companies and explained you situation
? Mortgage companies are sometimes willing to do a loan modification. Credit card companies are often willing to reduce interest. Join our site and go to the free counselling link and you will get help from a professional to discuss your other options.

Sub: #1 posted on Wed, 07/16/2008 - 21:08

Frogpatch Frogpatch
Moderators Cum Industry Expert
(Posts: 5381 | Credits: 652.52)

Use bankruptcy as a last resort. As was stated, talk to your lenders and see if they will help you out, even temporarily. The CC places may freeze your account so you are not able to charge any more, but that would keep you from accumulating any more debt. Also take advantage of the free counseling this site offers. You might have other solutions other than bankruptcy. I stress, use bankruptcy as a last resort. It will stay on your credit file for 7 to 10 years. Take it from someone who knows....been there done that. If it does turn out that Bankruptcy is your best bet, then find an attorney and see if he will work with you as far as payments go. Some will and some won't. But if they do, 9 out of 10 times, they will not file anything until you have paid more than half or all of the fee. Check all your options though and don't just jump into bankruptcy.

Sub: #2 posted on Wed, 07/16/2008 - 23:34

2nband 2nband
(Posts: 2279 | Credits: 469.2)

I'm jumping in here because of a statement made by the OP which caught my eye.
we don't qualify to file for free.

I wasn't aware there was even an option available to file BK free? Anyone care to elaborate, I'm interested in finding out more about this, if there is such a thing. Thanks!!

Sub: #3 posted on Wed, 07/16/2008 - 23:38

Shazzers Shazzers
Moderators Cum Industry Expert
(Posts: 17342 | Credits: 1592.88)

I don't know about free, some attorneys may lower some fees or isn't there something called legal aid? I don't know if they deal with bankruptcies or not.

Sub: #4 posted on Wed, 07/16/2008 - 23:42

2nband 2nband
(Posts: 2279 | Credits: 469.2)

You might want to look into a debt managment or consolidation plan first.

Talk to a reputable credit counselor about your situation. They might be able to assist you.

Sub: #5 posted on Wed, 07/16/2008 - 23:45

desperatelyseekingsanity desperatelyseekingsanity

(Posts: 1129 | Credits: 58.41)

By applying for a mortgage modification with my lender, I was able to be put on a hardship program. It was for basically the same reason, loss of income. I had to provide information on our income and expenses, but once the modification was approved, it dropped my payment by about $600 per month for three years, and reduced my interest rate slightly for that same three years. However, at the end of that three years, my payment will be about $100 per month more than it was before.

Pretty much all of my credit card companies offered me hardship programs also when I explained our situation to them. Most offered a reduced interest rate (0% to 10%), along with a temporarily reduced minimum payment amount. The hardship programs generally last for six to twelve months. The minimum payment that they all want is 1% of the outstanding balance.

If getting those modifications would help you, then I would definitely recommend giving it a try. In my case, I couldn't even come up with the reduced payment amounts for the credit cards, so we were forced to file for BK. But I'd say that it's definitely worth the effort to try to avoid it if possible.

Good luck!

Sub: #6 posted on Wed, 07/16/2008 - 23:46

alias1958 alias1958

(Posts: 1230 | Credits: 79.88)

Shaz - Yes, very low income people can apply to have the filing fees waived. Also, there are legal aid type places that will help low income people with the paperwork.

But - When I say low income, I mean low income. Like minimum wage earnings or lower . . . . .

Sub: #7 posted on Thu, 07/17/2008 - 00:58

goudah2424 goudah2424

(Posts: 7936 | Credits: 1224.93)

I'm sure I wouldn't qualify, but I was interested in learning more about it. I didn't know they would waive fees. Interesting. Thanks!

Sub: #8 posted on Thu, 07/17/2008 - 01:41

Shazzers Shazzers
Moderators Cum Industry Expert
(Posts: 17342 | Credits: 1592.88)

yep - But it's super hard to qualify for. I mean, you pretty much have to be totally destitute . . . . .

Sub: #9 posted on Thu, 07/17/2008 - 03:11

goudah2424 goudah2424

(Posts: 7936 | Credits: 1224.93)

If you are considering filing Bankruptcy you should contact an attorney. Many attorney's will offer a free consultation. You should consult one who has a lot of experience in the Bankrupcty field.

Some attorney's will accept their Chapter 13 fees through the plan. Depending on how far behind you are on your home you might not have a choice but to file a Chapter 13 in order to save your home. Good luck.

Sub: #10 posted on Fri, 07/18/2008 - 21:09


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