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Bankruptcy Tips For The Holiday Season


After living through years of financial stress, which was especially painful during the holidays, making the decision to file for bankruptcy can be a relief.  Nothing puts a damper on your holiday festivities like having the court get involved in your business.  This is one of the reasons that Divorce Monday, the first business Monday of the year, is when bankruptcy courts receive more divorce petitions than any other day of the year.  No equivalent of Divorce Monday exists in bankruptcy courts.  Bankruptcy proceedings take place over a period of time.  Therefore, you might be wondering how to make it through the holidays if you are preparing to file for bankruptcy in the next few months, as well as how much of a dark cloud a recent bankruptcy filing can cast over your holiday celebrations this year.  A Plantation chapter 13 bankruptcy lawyer can help you avoid mistakes this holiday season if you are planning to file for bankruptcy in the near future or if your case is already in bankruptcy court.

Should You File for Bankruptcy in the Old Year or in the New Year?

Which financial transactions took place in which calendar year matters less in bankruptcy cases than it does in divorce cases.  In other words, if you file for bankruptcy in early 2023, then you will need to be on your best financial behavior during the last few months of 2022.  Splurging for the holidays before declaring bankruptcy in early 2023 is the worst thing you can do.  The result is that the bankruptcy court will be willing to discharge fewer of your debts.  Instead, you should be saving as much as possible in order to be able to keep up with your chapter 13 bankruptcy plan.  One reason to file for bankruptcy before the holidays instead of after is that, if your employer pays you a year-end bonus, it can make your income look higher than it is.

Holiday Splurges Can Cause Problems in Your Bankruptcy Case

The bankruptcy court is literally making a list and checking it twice when it comes to your income, your debts, and what you can reasonably afford to pay.  If possible, do not make any new charges on your credit card debt, or you will jeopardize your chances of the bankruptcy court discharging that debt.  Likewise, do not open any new credit accounts, not even retail credit cards; not only will these not be dischargeable, but it will also send the message to the court that you have not learned your lesson about taking on new debts while struggling to repay your current debts.  If you are unsure about how a purchase or loan application will affect your bankruptcy case, you should discuss the matter with a bankruptcy lawyer.

Don’t Let Bankruptcy Put a Damper on Your Holiday Cheer

A South Florida debt lawyer can help you navigate the process of filing for bankruptcy during the holidays.  Contact Nowack & Olson, PLLC in Plantation, Florida to discuss your case.



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