When most people file for bankruptcy, they have already waited too long and are probably completely broke. In a perfect world, when times are getting tough, the smart thing to do would be seek the advice of a bankruptcy attorney before their world is completely upside down. As Americans we tend to view the world through rose-colored glasses because of the way we were raised. Many Americans started losing their jobs during the economic downturn that began in 2008. The economy is still in the tank and so is the job market. Many people believed real estate and the economy would bounce back quickly and they could take their time looking for a job. Instead, many of these people waited too long and their unemployment insurance ran out leaving them with zero dollars income. This is when people typically start selling personal property and any valuables they might have to keep the ship afloat. The sad thing is, filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy could quickly eliminate all the stress caused by the bills that are piling up. People don't need to worry about losing all their property by filing bankruptcy. The bankruptcy code allows for generous exemptions to protect a person's property. It would be pretty hard to give someone a fresh start if you took away everything they owned and sold it to pay off creditors. That's why Congress included bankruptcy exemption laws to allow a person to protect the necessities.
One problem many people have when waiting too long to file for bankruptcy is coming up with the money to pay the bankruptcy filing fees and hire a bankruptcy attorney. In some extreme cases, the people that bury their head in the sand might end up losing everything prior to filing bankruptcy making them essentially too broke to file. For this group, basically they have nothing to lose so why waste the money filing? Even if the creditors began suing them and got judgments against them, there would be nothing to attach.
Good advice would be to consult a bankruptcy attorney when times start getting tough. This will give an individual an out if things don't turn around in their financial life. Having that knowledge of options that are available to them can be invaluable to their recovery. Sometimes it might be as simple as some kind of debt settlement negotiated with the creditors. For those that have a large amount of unsecured debt, it's foolish not to consider filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy. At the end of 2011, it was reported that the average American has close to $ 16,000 in credit card debt. Considering this same person only makes about $ 35,000 a year, there is a good chance that they will never be able to pay this debt off in a lifetime outside of winning the lottery. Most Americans are kicking the can down the road and just getting by another month. At some point in time when disaster strikes, the wheels will fall off and the options will be much more limited for that individual. What does it hurt to take the time and consult a bankruptcy attorney before it's too late? There might not be anything there, but if there is it might be a lifesaver.