We all know the spending temptation that is engendered by the holiday shopping season. Advertising and intensive marketing campaigns in Arkansas and nationwide make it difficult to use credit cards conservatively. Many persons who are trying to keep a tight budget may stray into the grip of credit card dependency, and some may encounter dire financial hardship in the process.
One of the common practices that lead people into such hardship is the repetitive opening of new credit card accounts to try and pay off the existing ones. As these pile up, the well-known phrase of “robbing Peter to pay Paul” comes to ring true. The cycle leads to deeper and deeper debt. Furthermore, some families may experience a crisis, like an illness or disability, resulting in unemployment and increased medical expenses, on top of the credit card debacle.
These situations put people in need of help. There are counseling agencies that they may turn to for assistance, but consumers must beware of the scam companies that will drain them of a good chunk of the their monthly income, thus digging them into a deeper hole. In return, these companies will promise that a payment plan will be arranged that clear up one’s financial problems.
The consumer must beware of those agencies that advertise dramatic and virtually miraculous results. The miracle does not occur, and the consumers realize that their situation has worsened. At this point, many turn to the most effective and powerful remedy, which is bankruptcy. When an individual or married couple prepare to file bankruptcy, they must take a credit counseling course with a credit counseling agency approved by the office of the U.S. Bankruptcy Trustee.
Sometimes, a credit plan may be arranged by one of these credible agencies, and for those with relatively minor debt loads, a payment plan may work. However, where there is an out-of-control debt load and severe financial hardship that cannot be significantly reduced through affordable monthly payments, Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be the best alternative available. In Arkansas, consumers can determine their eligibility for this government-sponsored remedy by consulting with an experienced consumer bankruptcy attorney.
Source: postandcourier.com, “How to find help after Christmas credit card trouble”, Dave Munday, Dec. 25, 2015