With the rising costs of health care and inflation, it is not uncommon for seniors to seek bankruptcy relief. Although bankruptcy can remain on a filer’s credit report for seven to 10 years, depending on the type of bankruptcy, there are certain steps seniors can take to boost their credit score during this period.
Prepare a Budget
One of the most important steps a senior can take after filing for bankruptcy is to prepare a budget. Many agencies, including the AARP Foundation, will work with the senior to prepare one. Most seniors live on fixed incomes, which leave very little room for unexpected expenses, such as large medical bills or expensive home repairs. However, if senior consumers can put together a plan that gives them leeway to pay for the unexpected, this budget will help them prevent falling into the same financial situation, again.
Re-establish Good Credit
A person can begin rebuilding their credit score immediately after filing bankruptcy. The first step is to review your credit report. If any error is spotted, it is important that the consumer report this so that it can be removed from his or her report. Many consumers have luck with secured credit cards, which require the cardholder to put down a deposit equal to his or her line of credit. Continuing to make all bill payments on time over the course of several months or a year can also assist in rebuilding a person’s credit score.
Be Cautious of Credit Offers
It is important that seniors be skeptical when approached with financial offers, especially those meant to repair or rebuild credit, as well as consolidate or forgive debt. Seniors should also closely review any credit card offers sent to them as many companies will target consumers immediately following a bankruptcy case. Instances have been reported where debt collection companies will try to trick a consumer into paying on an unsecured discharged debt following a bankruptcy. Keep all bankruptcy papers in an organized file and refer to them as needed. Any and all discharged debts will be included in these papers.
A person can spend years struggling with medical and credit card debt that would otherwise be eliminated in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. Someone’s age should not be a deterrent if bankruptcy is the best option for him or her. A bankruptcy attorney can meet with the individual free of charge to discuss his or her financial situation and determine the best path forward.
If you have questions on this topic or are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade Garcia McMaken has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade Garcia McMaken website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.