I am considering steering my mother through bankruptcy and was wondering if this the best or even a necessary course. She is 71 and on a fixed social security income of around $2100/mo. Her rent is about $1000, and in addition to other moderate bills, she has a credit card debt of over 25k, plus other creditors after her for such things as defaulting on a security alarm contract. She really can't afford to pay even the credit card bills, which though she has entered into a debt consolidation agreement with some online company, her monthly debt is still $450/month. She has no assets or retirement savings, so there is really nothing a collection agency could come after her for if she defaulted on any credit payment. She is not worried about her credit since she doesn't forsee borrowing for anything, not even a car. What should she do?
3 Answers from Attorneys
Creditors shall continue to hound incessantly. Whether or not your mother has assets, bankruptcy buys (on the cheap) much more than asset protection: it purchases peace of mind and relief from harassment.
This answer (as well as our Web site) by San Diego Bankruptcy Attorney, Asaph Abrams doesnít address all facts & implications of the question; itís general bankruptcy info, not legal advice to be relied upon; it creates no attorney-client relationship; it may be pertinent to CA bankruptcy law only and certain facts may be relevant to the San Diego Bankruptcy Court only; itís independent of other answers. Seek legal counsel before acting on or refraining from bankruptcy- or other legal-action.
71 is still young! If you think it would maker her feel better to be debt free, consider it!
It depends on whether your mother wants to stop the harassment. She is fairly judgment proof, meaning her income cannot be garnished and she has no assets to take. On the other hand, she may one day inherit money or win the lottery.
I would suggest you make an appointment with your mother with a bankruptcy attorney near you and have a discussion about the pros and cons of bankruptcy versus doing nothing.
I would be happy to meet with the two of you for consultation.