There are a few kinds of bankruptcy that you can consider, Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Each one has its own benefits and downsides, so it’s important to learn what you can about them before you decide which to pursue.

Although you may want to avoid Chapter 7 because you’ve heard that it requires you to liquidate your assets, don’t be so quick to dismiss the possibility. In reality, bankruptcy isn’t designed to make you start over. Instead, you do get to keep some of your assets and may even be able to retain some major assets like your home or vehicle.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy doesn’t require you to sell or liquidate assets, but it does require on-time payments for three to five years. If you miss a payment, it could mean that you can’t continue the bankruptcy.

Keep in mind that no bankruptcy is cheap. It usually costs between $1,500 and $2,500 for Chapter 7 bankruptcies and up to $4,000 for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. An initial consultation may cost little or nothing, so it’s still a good idea to speak with a professional about whether or not bankruptcy is the right choice for you.

The reality is that bankruptcy isn’t the best option for every situation, but it works for many people who need it in times where they can’t make ends meet. Whether it’s because of unexpected medical bills, the stress of an underwater mortgage or other financial situation, a bankruptcy could be the right choice for you. Get more information on a bankruptcy before you decide if you want to pursue it.

Source: Credit Cards, “14 key factors when considering bankruptcy,” Dana Dratch, accessed May 24, 2018