Chapter 7 or Chapter 13?

Realizing that you are in a position that might require filing for bankruptcy is a hard pill to swallow for anybody. It takes a lot of humility to understand that you have screwed up. Filing for bankruptcy usually has a negative connotation associated with it. It is a very long thought out and difficult decision people make. However, it is important to know what happens when you file for bankruptcy. First when considering whether or not you should file for bankruptcy you will be required to attend approximately six months of credit counseling and at the end you will take a test to see whether Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 is more suited to your needs.

Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 are the two most common types of bankruptcy individuals end up filing with the Court. With a Chapter 13 you will set up a specific payment plan including payment and time period to pay back the loan to pay back your creditors on payments that are overdue. The time period used is typically about five years. The Court needs to approve your payment plan and this happens once they have sufficient evidence that you have the financial means to pay the debts back as you have outlined. Often this is the more desirable option as you get to keep your property and work over time to pay things off. On the other hand, with a Chapter 7 you have to fill out a bunch of paperwork detailing all of the property you own and assign a value to each item. It tends to be known as the liquidation bankruptcy. You then typically have a hearing where your creditors get to determine whether each item should be part of the bankruptcy. A trustee will then take these items and work on converting them into cash to pay back your creditors. Hence the liquidation aspect. It is important to understand that once a bankruptcy claim is filed, an automatic stay is put in place which prevents creditors from furthering harassing you for payment during the proceedings.

A lot of people enjoy this aspect because it can get overwhelming having creditors down your back every day. A month or so after you file your claim, your trustee with meet with creditors to discus your bankruptcy. The trustee acts as the intermediary between you and the creditors so that you don’t keep receiving harassment from creditors. The trustee will go over the paperwork with you and make sure there aren’t any discrepancies with values you have assigned different items of property you listed. Based on your goals, assets, debts, income and expenses filing for bankruptcy can help wipe out most types of debt including credit cards and medical bills, reduce monthly payments, stop creditor harassment, stop repossession of your vehicle, stop the foreclosure of your residence, stop wage garnishments, and even stop the stress caused by debt collectors. Either option you choose, Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, it is important to have an attorney look over things. Kirkpatrick & Associates is a great firm to call. They will assist you in getting back on the right track. Bankruptcy may not be the best option for everyone so it is important to have an attorney go over things with you and help you come to the best option for your situation.

Compliance with Obama Care

In case you haven’t already heard, Obamacare is now in effect. But what exactly is it? This was a piece of legislation that was signed into law, four years ago now, back in March 2010. One of the goals of the legislation was to increase the quality as well as affordability of health insurance for individuals who weren’t otherwise given the opportunity for coverage.

Some of the benefits of Obamacare include: individuals being able to stay on a family’s health plan until they reach the age of 26, stopping insurance companies from dropping you if you get sick, prevent against gender discrimination, preventing insurance companies from making unjustified jumps in rates, doing away with annual limits, expand coverage to a lot more individuals, subsidize the cost of health insurance and prevent insurance companies from denying you for coverage because of a pre-existing condition. Sounds pretty good right? Another benefit is that emergency care, hospitalization, prescription drugs, maternity and newborn care be included in all plans with no annual limit. Furthermore, preventative services such as yearly check-ups, immunizations, counseling and screenings must be provided at no out of pocket cost to the patient. Since this is the case, some individuals such as high income earners, large businesses and the healthcare industry will have additional taxes to help pay for all of this. So if you are overly rich, you might not appreciate it all that much.

So as with any law and legislation there are compliances rules that we need to follow. Obamacare is no exception. So how can you and I be compliant with the new law? As fellow citizens we must obtain health insurance by the end of this year so by December of 2014, get an exemption, or pay a per month fee as a penalty for non compliance. This fee for not having insurance is $95 per adult plus $47.50 per child unless you have a family in which case you are capped at $285 per month. Or the government can fine you 1% of your income if that is greater. Keep in mind the rates I just mentioned are simply for this year, 2014. Next year instead of paying $95 per adult, the fee jumps up to $325! So rather than not complying why don’t you sign up for a plan because chances are you will be paying less than that per month and be receiving health coverage! Health care related costs are so expensive that I don’t see why you wouldn’t want health insurance to help you offset the bill. So in order to comply with the new law you need to be signed up for health insurance by the deadline of March 31st so time is ticking away.

If you are looking for additional insurance on top of health insurance perhaps you could go off own your own and sign up with a third party insurance company. rogersgray.com is a great option. They offer some great options for auto insurance, homeowners insurance and marie insurance to help better insure your other assets. Give them a call today.