Retirement. It’s the light at the end of the tunnel, the tape at the finish line, and for many a tremendous loss of income. Many financial experts stress saving for retirement early. The more you save, the happier you’ll be in the golden years.
But what if you have debt? Trying to save money for retirement does not seem like an urgent problem when you have thousands in debt. You assume you’ll start saving when the other debt is paid off. If you’re only paying minimums, it could be years until the debt is paid.
Some people will try to borrow against retirement accounts. Often, it’s a Band-Aid for a wound. Unless you take enough money from your retirement to pay all of your debt – you will still owe creditors and owe the retirement loan. You could face tax penalties for an early withdrawal and have less retirement savings.
Bankruptcy could be a solution to the problem. Think about how the minimum payments. If you eliminate the debt with a Chapter 7, the money for minimum payments can be saved for retirement. A Chapter 13 is a budget based repayment plan. You consolidate your bills based on what you can afford. When the plan is complete, you use the affordable Chapter 13 payment for retirement!
Please visit Bankrate for a useful calculator (you can click here). You can input income and number of years to retire to find the amount you need to save to meet your current annual income. You’ll be amazed at the amount. If your current plan to retire is not working and you need help with debt, call Geraci Law. Peter Francis Geraci is a financial expert and his attorneys can determine if bankruptcy is right for you.
When a car is repossessed, financers require large down payments to release vehicles. There are late fees, tow fees and storage fees added to the balance. So, if you want your vehicle back, you will probably pay more than the payments you fell behind on.
Generally a person is given 21 days to retrieve a vehicle before it is auctioned. During this time you must figure out what you want to do with the car. Once the vehicle is sold, it is no longer your vehicle to try and redeem. Usually vehicles are sold for next to nothing so not only are you car-less but you probably owe a large balance on a car you do not have anymore.
You have a solution to the problem! File a bankruptcy with Peter Francis Geraci and Geraci Law. If you want to keep car, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy must be filed before the car is sold. Geraci Law attorneys can file in as little as one day. A Chapter 13 is a 3-5 year repayment plan consolidating debt based on your income and expenses.
If you do not want the vehicle, you will owe a deficiency after the car is sold. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy can eliminate your obligation to the balance with any other credit cards, medical or other debt. Filing either bankruptcy will stop creditors from calling and stop any lawsuits!
There seems to be countless Web sites, pamphlets and talking heads on television talking about foreclosure. But there is not much information about how to stop the process. Once the foreclosure judgment is entered, most banks want it all or nothing. I talk to countless people able to pay the majority of arrears and their mortgage company will not accept partial payment.
It’s very simple – if you can afford your house, a Chapter 13 can help you. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy will not modify or change your monthly mortgage payment. But, you can pay the mortgage arrears over a 3-5 year repayment plan. You will start paying the regular mortgage payment and another to the bankruptcy court to get current.
So you fall behind on your mortgage, file a Chapter 13 repayment plan and then there is a loss of income. Sometimes it seems easier to bury your head in the sand and ignore the problem. But this is why you hire Geraci Law! You hire Peter Francis Geraci and Geraci Law Attorneys because we are here to help you. Almost every problem has a solution.
A similar situation happened to an Illinois couple. The wife lost her job during the Chapter 13 plan causing a loss of household income. Regular monthly mortgage payments fell behind and the couple was facing a motion to modify the stay (meaning the house is taken out of bankruptcy protection). The wife returned to work but could not pay the full balance to vacate the motion. Instead of the mortgage company’s motion being granted, Geraci Law Attorney Ashley Chike was able to work out a six month payment plan for the arrears. She was able to keep the house in the bankruptcy and prevent a foreclosure.
If you have a vehicle payment that is too high, it may be that you “rolled over” the balance on a vehicle you traded in, paying that off with part of the new loan. That means you are “upside down” and owe more than the vehicle is worth. That means your payment may be more than you can afford. Geraci Law helps our clients by developing relationships with honest car dealers who can sell you a vehicle you can afford at a payment you can afford. Here is what Gino Amoroso of Motor World in Glen Ellyn, Illinois has to say about working with Geraci Law clients:
Hello Scott, Just want to say thank you & keep you informed on how things are going. Currently this month we have sold eight customers referred by Geraci Law Firm: all were completely satisfied. The buying experience here at Motor World is the fast approval process and polite professional sales reps that create the ultimate buying experience. As an example today we did a complete brake job (pads & rotors) on a car we sold two months ago that was never promised to the customer: its the extra mile we go to keep our customers happy. As a result of our work ethics we are on target to hit a hundred sales this month, We enjoy a great working relationship with you and your organization Scott! That’s it.
Gino Amoroso http://www.mwcars.com
Earlier this week, the Seattle City Council approved the largest increase in minimum wage. The minimum wage in Seattle is $15 per hour (minimum wage in Illinois is only $8.25 per hour). The Seattle city council took a step toward balancing income inequality.
If other cities would follow the example, many people would not need to rely on credit as an income supplement. Instead, a person can budget to live within their means. When you are only making $330 per week (before taxes), using credit cards or payday loans as a crutch seems like an easy solution.
The problem is paying minimums means you are paying interest. The debt is not getting paid off and the balance might be increasing. So you are stuck in a bad cycle where you are current with the minimums but using credit because your income is going to paying the minimums.
Break the cycle and consider bankruptcy! You can file a bankruptcy and eliminate the debt allowing you to budget even with minimum wage earnings. So when your state or city increases the minimum wage, you have more income to save instead of paying toward high interest debt.
At Geraci Law, at the end of every month each one of our 80 or so attorneys reports on something exceptional they did for a client. This helps to reinforce part of our Peter Francis Geraci mission statement: “We are here to help others”. We post these on our website, http://www.infotapes.com every month so that potential clients can be assured they are receiving the highest level of professional services from each and every Geraci Law attorney.
One of our lawyer was reluctant to contribute; she said “I do good things for our clients every day, it’s nothing special”. I said, “then just give me the MOST special good thing you did in a month.” So now she is our top contributor!
How much debt do I need to file a bankruptcy? It’s a common question. What seems like a small amount to one person can seem like millions to someone else. Generally speaking, the biggest qualification for a bankruptcy is debt you cannot pay. But how much is enough?
The best place to start is your credit report. You can pull a free credit report annually (www.annualcreditreport.com). Many people are surprised when debt and judgments show up from years ago.
It’s a common misconception that unpaid debt will just disappear. It is not magic – debt doesn’t just go away. Your creditors may write off the balance but the debt is still owed. Creditors just consider you to be a bad customer but are not collecting.
If total debt is approximately $10,000 or more, consider a bankruptcy. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy will eliminate any obligation to the balance and prevent creditors from calling you, suing you or trying to collect. If you have less debt but are behind on a car payment or a mortgage, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy can be an option. You can consolidate your bills into an interest free repayment plan and bring delinquent loan payments current.
If you are considering a bankruptcy, contact Geraci Law. We offer free phone and in-office bankruptcy consultations to figure out the best option for you. If we cannot help you, we’ll point you in the right direction.