Phone Call Us 414-326-9231
608-260-7133
Toll Free 866-678-9352
Text Us 414-277-7742

Wisconsin Bankruptcy Law Blog

Are you an older individual dealing with debt? You have options

Facing overwhelming debt is frustrating, especially when that means that a person is also dealing with phone calls from creditors, collection letters, the threat of repossession and more. For older people, having a lot of debt is particularly concerning because many do not have the ability to earn more money or pay down their balances. Many elderly individuals in Wisconsin and throughout the United States are choosing to file for bankruptcy. 

When an older person is faced with an unmanageable debt burden, his or her options may be more limited. For example, it may not be possible to get a loan refinanced or get a job to pay off debt. In many cases, health problems all but ensure that the bills will keep adding up and they will keep falling behind.

Is your business in a downward financial spiral? You have options

As a Wisconsin business owner, you understand that your company's financial status is going to fluctuate alongside national, local and global economies. You may have a few consecutive stellar years, then a financial crisis hits you. If you have a strong support team in place, you may be able to make a few adjustments, implement creative ideas and bounce back without any far-reaching, long-term negative consequences.

It's not always that easy, however; in fact, sometimes you must explore additional options to find a solution that allows you to get your financial train back on track without hanging a "closed permanently" sign on your storefront (whether you have a brick and mortar facility or are primarily e-commerce based). The good news is that there are several types of bankruptcy that may help you wipe the slate clean and start afresh without ever closing your doors.

Have the holidays left you with more debt than you can handle?

The holidays are often a time where caution is thrown to the wind and money is spent to ensure happy memories. If you are anything like the average American family, you likely spent somewhere between $500-$1,500 on gifts this holiday season. Now that the holidays are over and the particles of wrapping paper dust have settled on the receipts, it's time to get serious about your plan to dig out of debt.

Most Americans carry several thousand dollars of credit card debt- not considering mortgage, student loan or vehicle debt. Experts say if only the minimum payments are made, it would take the average American 23 years to pay off their credit cards.

A bankruptcy trustee helps keep your case in line

Bankruptcy is a legal process that can help qualifying individuals find relief from their overwhelming debt. As you consider this option, you may come to realize that it is a very involved process. Before becoming intimidated, however, you may want to gain more information on specific aspects of bankruptcy proceedings.

An important aspect to look into relates to the individuals involved in your case. Certainly, you and your legal counsel will play important parts, as will a judge. Someone you may not have considered as having a vital role in your case is a bankruptcy trustee.

Your bankruptcy circumstances could affect the automatic stay

If you have been struggling with your finances -- in particular with substantial debt -- for some time, you may feel as if you have exhausted your options for getting back on track on your own. Though you may have made payments, cut spending and taken other routes, your efforts may not have been enough to make a significant dent in your outstanding balances. You may even now face actions from creditors, like garnishment or repossession.

Due to your circumstances, you may believe that now is the time to consider filing for bankruptcy. You know that it is a major step, but you also know that it has many benefits. In particular, you may have heard that an automatic stay can stop creditor actions.

What's going to happen to your personal property in bankruptcy?

It is not easy to make the choice to file for bankruptcy. Even people overwhelmed by debt are reluctant to move forward with this step because they have concerns about what to expect from the process. There are a lot of fears and misconceptions that hold people back from taking a step that could be beneficial for their future.

One of the main concerns Wisconsin debt holders have regarding the bankruptcy process is what will happen to their personal property. In reality, you may be able to keep most of the things that are important to you. Even when filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, known as liquidation bankruptcy, certain exemptions may be available that will allow you to keep a majority of your personal possessions.

Are you in danger of wage garnishment?

Your paycheck already stretches too thin. The last thing you need is having even less money to take home. That is what will happen if one or more of your creditors decide to garnish your wages. It can be devastating to receive a notice that a creditor is taking steps to get the court's permission for wage garnishments, and you may think you have no option but to let it happen.

However, you do have options. To avoid having your wages garnished, your first step will be learning as much as you can about the process and the methods of debt relief available to you.

Is tax debt a main concern in your current financial crisis?

Your personal economics have a lot of impact on your ability to function within the Wisconsin economy. Things may be financially strong for the state as a whole, but if you're out of work or have recently faced an unexpected expense, it can spark a serious debt problem in your own household. You may be one of many people in this state who had to have surgery this year or who had to pay for much needed car repairs.  

Perhaps income tax is your main concern. The good news is that there are often several types of debt relief options, such as bankruptcy, that can help overcome financial problems that have gotten out of hand. The not-so-good news is that not all tax debt is dischargeable. To avoid complications when filing for bankruptcy, it is always best to seek clarification of eligibility requirements as well as to learn more about which types of debts you are able to discharge and which you will still be liable for after bankruptcy. 

Chapter 7 versus Chapter 13 bankruptcy: What's the difference?

When you first realized you were financially in over your head, you likely did what many other Wisconsin residents do in similar situations: You tried to handle it yourself. Perhaps, you tightened your purse strings and started packing lunches from home for work instead of eating out. Maybe you also canceled some magazine subscriptions or regular indulgences, such as manicures or a membership at a local gym.  

When financial crisis hits, however, even the best efforts are not always enough to get things back on track. That is not necessarily a reason for despair though, because there are often debt relief solutions available if you know where to look. In fact, many people are able to wipe their slates clean and start afresh by filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. There are differences between the two and if you're considering filing, you'll want to seek clarification ahead of time. 

Is your sole proprietorship in need of bankruptcy?

As a Wisconsin small business owner, you likely could not have felt more proud than the day you opened the doors of your operation. You may have felt excited to get your company running and to provide your customers or clients with the product or service you crafted. For a time, you may have felt your business was on the rise.

Of course, as you likely knew before starting your company, many small businesses do not last, and unfortunately, your business has suffered considerable financial losses that have led to substantial debt. Now, you wonder whether you will have the ability to keep your business running and how you will be able to address your outstanding liabilities.

Contact Our Milwaukee Law Firm

Reach Miller & Miller Law, LLC, online or call us at 414-326-9231 to schedule a free initial consultation. Our law office also provides Spanish language services. Se habla español.

To schedule an initial consultation, call 414-326-9231 or contact Miller & Miller today.

Free Case Evaluation

* indicates required field

Milwaukee Office
633 W Wisconsin Ave, Suite 500
Milwaukee, WI 53203

Phone: 414-312-6581
Fax: 414-277-1303
Milwaukee Law Office Map

Kenosha Office
6123 Green Bay Road
Suite 210
Kenosha, WI 53142

Phone: 262-326-1669
Kenosha Law Office Map

Brookfield Office
200 S. Executive Drive
Suite 101
Brookfield, WI 53005

Phone: 262-261-0665
Brookfield Law Office Map

Madison Office
2810 Crossroads Drive
Suite 4001
Madison, WI 53718

Phone: 608-260-7133
Madison Law Office Map

Glendale Office
6001 N. Green Bay Avenue
Glendale, WI 53209

Phone: 414-973-8662
Glendale Law Office Map

Appleton Office
4321 W. College Ave.
Suite 200
Appleton, WI 54914

Phone: 920-280-3838
Map & Directions