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Should I Declare Bankruptcy or Wait Four Years? – Lisa

“Dear Steve,

I used to make $140k, but then got divorced and lost my job. We had over $100k in credit card debt. My husband already declared BK but I haven’t for fear it would reduce my employability. My debt went delinquent 9/09 so I have already put in 3 years and they will fall off my credit in four years. None have sued. I just get the occasional call or letter. If I declare bankruptcy now, it will stay for seven years. I just got a job but only make $36k. I have a very old car and my only asset is my 401k. I’m inclined to not declare BK and just wait four years.

Why would I declare BK rather than just waiting another 4 years?


Dear Lisa,

It seems that what is holding you down now is the delinquent debt and the fact you are probably having a tough time trying to reestablish credit with all that delinquent debt.

For me the real question is this:

  1. Do you want to wait to wait four years and limp along as you are and then hope you are not up for a lifetime of your debt being sold and resold and collectors hunting you down, or;
  2. Do you want to deal with this now, get the legal fresh start and second chance the law allows you and start rebuilding a better future today.

Which of those two scenarios sounds like the path you’d rather follow. Let me know and I’ll get you going in the right direction.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode
Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

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