Throughout the last decade, the American economy bounced from the most significant financial depressions in 2008 to one of the most profitable days in the DOW's history in 2018. But what effect has this shift had on older Americans?
Unfortunately, a recovering economy does not necessarily mean improvement for everyone. According to the Economist, the portion of all bankruptcy filings "made by people over the age of 65 has climbed from 2 percent in 1991 to 12 percent between 2013 and 2016."
More Americans have to consider bankruptcy due to the growing costs of healthcare and the limited income available to older citizens. It appears that filing for bankruptcy is the only option to avoid passing debt to children or grandchildren.
Should I consider bankruptcy for my debts?
While bankruptcy decreases across the general population, more mature adults will file within the next five years to alleviate debts from their estates. While bankruptcy is not the right choice for everyone, it may be a solid option for you to pay off your debts before it becomes unbearable.
You will have to consult with a financial advisor or a legal expert on your process through bankruptcy. You should be completely honest about your finances so that experts can provide the right advice for your specific circumstances.
As an individual, you will consider two types of repayment options: Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. Chapter 7 allows you to liquidate your assets and pay off creditors in a short period, while Chapter 13 develops a three to five-year repayment schedule for your debt.
The right chapter depends on your needs, so take time to decide which type of bankruptcy is right for you. Be prepared to investigate how this will affect credit scores and your estate before completing the filing process.