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improve credit score, San Antonio bankruptcy lawyerTo say that a person's credit score is important is an understatement. Your score not only affects your ability to take out loans and successfully apply for credit cards, but it also plays a role in applying for insurance, leasing a car, and even getting an apartment. More than just three numbers, a credit score is a measurable value of how trustworthy a person is with money and payments.

For these reasons, you should make every attempt to raise your credit scores as high as possible. Here are some helpful ways to boost and maintain a respectable credit score:

1. Start with What You Have

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credit card debt Texas, San Antonio bankruptcy lawyerCredit cards are a double-edged financial sword. Aside from their obvious benefits and functions, many banks offer points systems and other rewards for using their cards. Many Americans, however, are all too familiar with the possible risks associated with credit card use—especially when one falls behind on payments.

Nearly every American has a credit card--and likely more than one. According to TIME, the overall amount of debt incurred by Americans has actually been in decline. While this is great news for some, others are still facing the challenge of keeping up with payments, dealing with harassing creditor calls, and possibly even considering bankruptcy.

Solving debt problems is about active financial planning and making smart choices. Here are four helpful ways to regain control of credit card debt:

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Chapter 13 bankruptcy Texas, San Antonio bankruptcy lawyerMany individuals and business owners wrongly attach a negative connotation to the word “bankruptcy.” While it is true that those who choose to file bankruptcy may be facing dire financial situations, the process should not be viewed as an inherently bad decision. Instead, debtors should view bankruptcy as an opportunity to develop a financial plan that leads to financial stability.

Though large companies are required by law to hire a bankruptcy attorney, individuals have the choice of filing alone. While there are standard laws in place for the bankruptcy process, every case is different. For this reason, it is often wise to hire an experienced bankruptcy lawyer to review the case and identify the best approach to filing.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Provides a Path to Financial Freedom

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federal minimum wageThe minimum wage was a concept put in place to protect workers from the past tyranny of their employers. Larger companies can hold a lot of sway over the heads of individuals depending on a paycheck to put food on their tables and provide themselves and their families with the basic living necessities. This system also prevents businesses and business owners from auctioning off jobs, until men and women are forced to work for cents on the hour.

The problem with Texas minimum wage is exactly what it describes--the smallest amount an employer can legally pay his or her employees. Over the last few years in particular, many people are beginning to ask themselves and their legislatures whether the minimum wage laws are progressive enough to have evolved with society.

The current minimum wage in the State of Texas is only $7.25 per hour, the federally mandated minimum wage. While many other states have their own minimum wage laws that increase this rate, Texas is not one of them. The following statistics about the cost of living in Texas can be startling compared with its already low minimum wage:

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tax lienIt is not uncommon for a person to find themselves behind on their income taxes, and many across Texas and the rest of the country suffer from this same problem. Everyone has seen the proverbial person walking through the door of his or her accountant's office with years worth of paperwork in hand. However, this only generally occurs when they receive notices from the Internal Revenue Service or simply have all of their money frozen.

In many cases, filing for bankruptcy can assist you in your financial predicament with the government. First, you should consult a Texas bankruptcy attorney to assess what is really going on and to find the best way to remedy the problem. In this way, it is critical to understand the key differences between a tax levy and a tax lien.

Consider the following deviations between a tax levy and a lien, and why one is more critical than the other to your short and long term financial health:

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