Bankruptcy may feel like hitting rock bottom, but it has always been designed to give people a new start into financial health. Debt is a serious problem for many Americans, and states like Pennsylvania and Florida are seeing changes in the bankruptcy landscape for an unfortunate reason.
What population is at greatest risk for bankruptcy?
People with large debts or big liabilities on which they may default are always at higher risk, but bankruptcy rates have gone down for nearly every demographic except senior citizens. People aged 65 to 74 moved up to 12.2 percent of new bankruptcy filers in 2016 from only 2.1 percent a quarter-century earlier.
Why are more seniors filing for bankruptcy?
Reduced income at the same time that medical costs and other living expenses go up is a large factor in bankruptcy among the aging. Out-of-pocket expenses for health-related needs, even among the insured, can take up to a fifth of a person’s income or more, and the average debt related to medical needs has gone up to more than $40,000 per senior household.
How can seniors avoid the sorts of debts that cause bankruptcy?
When everyday expenses for food and medicine are a major concern, it is best to avoid high-interest payment methods like credit cards or short-term loans. Seniors and their families should check with municipal, state and federal agencies about available aid.
- How can seniors best manage the bankruptcy filing process?
An attorney can help make the determination as to whether filing for bankruptcy is your best option, and he/she will also manage the bankruptcy process. For a free consultation on your bankruptcy options, contact the Quinn Law Firm at 814-833-2222.