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elderly parents, bankruptcy, finances, Texas lawyer, Texas bankruptcy attorneySome baby boomers have done advance planning to help those who will care for them in their old age by buying long term care insurance or setting aside specific funds. A growing number of aging individuals, however, are facing mental and physical challenges by relying on their family members. Research shows that 40 percent of U.S. adults are helping to care for a family member with a major health issue. The cost of caring for elderly parents can easily spin out of control, but you can get on top of your finances again through bankruptcy.

According to the National Alliance for Caregiving and the Metlife Market Institute, adults taking care of elderly parents face an increased risk of poor health themselves and a tendency to shortchange their own finances in the process. Poor health can lead to individual medical bills for you and using your savings to help a family member can lead to reliance on credit cards or loans to purchase basic necessities.

Sometimes one child has to give up their own career in order to focus on taking care of a parent. A female who chooses to give up her employment to become a caregiver will lose over $324,000 in pension or Social Security benefits and wages over the course of her lifetime. Many of the women taking on this new role hope that they will only need to step out of the workplace for a short period but then find that their family member requires more or longer-term care than they anticipated.

If you have been struggling to help a family member with the process of aging, there’s no doubt you have felt the impacts of doing so mentally, physically, and financially. If you are buried in debt and need a fresh start to get your life back on track, contact a Texas bankruptcy attorney today.

bankruptcy exemptions, Texas, federal exemptions, Texas bankruptcy exemptions, types of bankruptcy, debtLosing your job or getting expensive medical bills can have devastating effects on your budget.  Without ample savings, it can be hard to make monthly payments, and eventually you may lose your car or even your home.

However, bankruptcy can stop foreclosure, repossession and wage garnishment through selling property or reorganizing existing debts if you are earning income. However, filing for bankruptcy does not mean losing all your worldly possessions. When filing your paperwork, you may choose to use either federal exemptions or the exemptions set out by the statutes of Texas.

Both the Federal and State exemptions allow the debtor to protect equity in their primary residence. This is called the Homestead Exemption and it does not provide any protection to rental or investment properties. Under the federal exemption, you can shield up to $22,975 of equity from a bankruptcy trustee. The homestead exemption in Texas is not limited by the amount of equity in the home, but the size and location of the property. It cannot exceed an acre if it is located in a populated city, village or town.  In rural areas, the exemption can be as large as 100 acres.

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Olympics, Olympic Rings, San Antonio bankruptcy lawyer, career athletes, bankruptcy, financeThe 2014 Winter Olympics has just wrapped up and all eyes were on the incredible athletes from all around the world who have spent their life training for the big event. Although the Olympics is a celebration of all their hard work, it’s easy to underestimate the amount of time, energy, and financing that goes into preparing an athlete. Whether it’s the Olympics or professional sports, there’s a lot of hard work to get to the top. Some athletes struggle financially before or after their sports career, many even filing for bankruptcy.

The list of professional athletes who have gone bankrupt is longer than you might think. There are several reasons why they get there, but a primary one is poor financial planning or a series of hardships that threw them off course. Especially for younger athletes, not knowing how to properly manage their money can be a challenge too great, leading them to financial struggle mere years after their wealth accumulates.

According to a 2009 study, NFL retirees have a higher average income than men in similar age brackets of the general population. When that study broke down by age, however, younger athletes had higher numbers of sports stars with income close to or below the poverty level. A quick rise to fame can be difficult for younger athletes. Celebrating their big payoff after years of hard work and investment might mean financial difficulty and bankruptcy down the road as a result of poor financial planning.

Financial problems can affect individuals of all income levels and backgrounds. When you’re buried too deep and feeling like you’ll never be able to get on top of your situation, bankruptcy can be there to help. Bankruptcy can give you the fresh start you need. If you’d like to discuss your options, contact a San Antonio bankruptcy attorney today.

bankruptcy IMAGEEvery person who opens up a credit card, gets a loan, or finances a car has a credit report. Over years of making payments and opening new lines of credit, the credit report will reflect your ability to pay bills on time and effectively manage your debts. Lenders will review your report while deciding if you are a good or bad credit risk. Events like filing for bankruptcy are also reported to credit reporting agencies and can negatively impact your score.

The type of bankruptcy which is filed has different effects on your report. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy can eliminate the majority of your debts such as credit cards, medical debts, and even secured debts. Since it does not require the debtor to repay debts, it will remain on your credit report for ten years. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a reorganization which requires repayment of part of the debts. This kind of bankruptcy stays on your credit report for seven to ten years, depending on the credit reporting agency.

A bankruptcy will also lower your overall credit score. A higher credit score will be decreased by more points than a lower credit score. Credit agency FICO created two examples of how this works. If you have a credit score of 780, filing for bankruptcy can take between 220 to 240 points off your score. Whereas, if your credit score is 660 and you file, the decrease is only 130 to 150 points. The rationale is that those with a lower score are already risks, so a bankruptcy is not as detrimental.

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cosigner IMAGEIn some cases when a person has little or no credit history, it might be necessary to have a cosigner on a loan application.  It can be the difference between being approved for a loan or credit card and being denied.  Good cosigners have better credit scores and have shown an ability to handle their debt responsibly.  Typical cosigners include parents, relatives, or spouses.  But these cosigners are agreeing to be liable for debts if they are unpaid.

Since a bankruptcy can release or lessen debt obligations, it is important to know how cosigners are affected.  When they cosign for a loan, they are promising to take care of a debt if the debtor cannot.  A good example of when a debtor cannot handle their debt is when they file for bankruptcy.  What cosigners are responsible for after a bankruptcy is dependent on which chapter of bankruptcy is filed.

In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the debtor’s responsibility to repay debts is eliminated.  This will stop creditors from contacting the debtor directly for repayment due to the automatic stay.  Unfortunately this protection is not extended to cosigners or guarantors.  They can still be contacted for the repayment of outstanding debts.

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