Credit card debt is one of the most commonly reported reasons why individuals file for bankruptcy. Credit cards make it easy for users to lose track of how much they spend, causing them to accrue large debt balances. One reason for this is that credit cards can make an individual feel like he or she has more disposable income than he or she actually has.
There are a lot of myths and facts out there about credit, debt, and how to effectively manage your credit score. One of these is the myth that maintaining a balance on a credit card can help you raise your score faster than paying off the card each month. This simply is not true. If you have a credit card, you should make it a priority to pay its balance in full every month.
Your credit score is the three-digit number between 300 and 850 that provides a quick guide to your likelihood of repaying money that you borrow. There are three credit reporting agencies in the United States, which record your borrowing and payment actions to each calculate a score for you. These agencies are Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. You are entitled to a free credit report from each of these agencies once every 12 months.
The allure of fast cash directly deposited into your bank account within 24 hours may sound appealing but as The New York Times recently reported, consumers should be extremely cautious when it comes to the pitfalls of signing on the electronic dotted line.
Stockton and Detroit have succeeded in emerging from bankruptcy filings, but other cities could have similar issues in the near future. These medium-sized cities in California and Michigan struggled with, among other things, an underfunded pension system. There was simply not enough tax revenue to pay these obligations. One observer called Illinois the “basket case” of pension cases.
Several respected financial analysts predict that the U.S. will continue to experience a decline in the number of bankruptcy filings in 2015. Some data suggests an estimated 800,000 bankruptcy petitions will cross the judicial bench of district bankruptcy courts across the U.S. this year.
The recent release of statistical data by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts reveal that bankruptcy filings were down by 11 percent for the 12-month period ending March 2014. The big question, however, is will the downward trend continue throughout 2015?
There is often a misconception that people who file for bankruptcy are forced to do so because they were financially irresponsible. Although there are people who do file for bankruptcy for this reason, the majority of people who find themselves in this position get there because of events that occur of which they have no control over. A loss of employment, a serious medical issue, and divorce are just a few of the reasons that can completely wreck someone’s finances and leave them overwhelmed with debt.