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Cincinnati Bankruptcy Law Blog

Understanding how to protect against creditor harassment

Dealing with a collection agency can be a stressful experience, and in some cases, agencies may go above and beyond what is allowed in an attempt to persuade a person in Ohio to make a payment. However, as many may be uncertain of their rights when dealing with similar issues, they might not be aware that this behavior is unlawful. By becoming aware of one's rights, a person might be better prepared to protect against creditor harassment.

While collectors may be allowed to contact a person by phone several times on certain days, they cannot place these calls with the intention of harassing or intimidating a debtor. Collectors must also refrain from using inappropriate language and avoid threatening a person. In addition, these agencies must always identify themselves prior to speaking about a debt, and they cannot disclose information about other parties who are behind on accounts.

Could bankruptcy actually help you pursue homeownership?

Owning your own home is part of the quintessential American Dream. Unfortunately, for a large percentage of the U.S. population, this dream seems impossible. For many younger adults, low-income levels combined with high levels of personal debt make home ownership unattainable.

Individuals with low incomes or substantial debt may struggle with mediocre credit and limited financial liquidity, as most of their income goes directly pay monthly bills and credit card debt. These individuals may believe that they will be forced to rent for the rest of their lives while barely scraping by on credit.

Bankruptcy: Medical bills leave many in search of relief

A medical emergency can occur at any moment, and the fallout of such an event could have a devastating impact on one's finances. Medical debt continues to be a growing concern for many individuals in Ohio, and it remains one of the leading causes of bankruptcy filings. Those who feel they are drowning in medical bills may wish to know how to reduce the impact similar forms of debt will have on their futures.

When it comes to dealing with medical debt, consumers may find it imperative to gain a better understanding of their rights. Although similar concerns can have a disastrous impact on one's credit score, medical bills cannot be added to one's credit report for up to 180 days. During this period, a person retains the right to dispute a denial in insurance coverage. Should one's plan eventually pay for previous treatment, the debt must be removed from his or her credit report.

Bankruptcy: A pay later mindset could lead to financial strain

There are many individuals in Ohio and across the nation who live with the mentality that purchasing a new car or home is as simple as taking out a loan. While at the time, one may be fully capable of making the required payments on the loan, and thus may feel there is little risk involved. Unfortunately, this mindset of buy now and pay later might not always be so care-free, and such decisions have left many individuals in pursuit of the relief provided by bankruptcy.

Consumers take on new debts under a variety of circumstances. A promotion at work may leave a person shopping for a new house or automobile and searching through loan options to make the purchase possible. Even if one has little built up in the way of savings, a person may feel that the sudden increase in income makes such an endeavor possible.

Bankruptcy filings on the rise among older Americans

There are many elderly individuals in Ohio and elsewhere who have experienced the tribulations of financial strain. With the nature of the impact similar concerns can have on one's financial stability, these issues have left many searching through the available options for relief. Recent reports indicate that bankruptcy filings among older individuals have increased by as much as three times over a recent 25 year period.

Studies indicate that one growing concern for the elderly pertains to a widening inequality of wealth. Experts suggest that this disparity in wage gap and the constant increases to the costs of living have left many older individuals facing significant debt loads. With reports suggesting that senior citizens will make up nearly a quarter of America's population by the year 2050, similar issues may only continue to grow.

Debt collection: Getting the facts before making a payment

Dealing with the stress of frequent collection calls can be stressful and daunting, and unfortunately for many individuals in Ohio, this is a reality. When speaking with a debt collection agency, some may feel it best to attempt to provide some form of payment. However, simply adhering to requests for repayment might not always be advisable, as some agencies could be seeking money for debts one may no be longer responsible for.

For the average person, understanding the statute of limitations and how it applies to certain debts can be challenging. To add to one's stress, collection agencies could be placing daily phone calls attempting to persuade a person of his or her obligation to make a payment. While there are rules regulating the information that a collector must provide to a person prior to discussing a debt, things might not always go as intended.

Overcoming Common Debt Fears

Many people who have trouble paying bills and face mounting debt, also worry about the possible consequences. They may fear extreme ramifications such as going to jail or losing their home. These types of fears can be paralyzing and result in a failure to act at all which can exacerbate debt problems.

In most cases, these fears are not warranted. If you are experiencing problems with debt, it is important to take steps to regain control over your financial situation. The following are some common fears about the consequences of debt that are often not based in reality.

Bankruptcy: Dealing with the post-holiday debt blues

Now that the holiday season has come and gone, many consumers in Ohio and elsewhere are left to face the fallout of their recent shopping endeavors. Getting the first credit card bill after the holidays can be extremely stressful. Some of those who are dealing with the after holiday debt blues may benefit from seeking advice on steps to take to cut down on debts, while others might be wondering if bankruptcy is the correct path for relief.

There are a variety of tips consumers can consider when it comes to addressing financial concerns after the holidays. For instance, one action to avoid is to keep adding to their balances. While many stores and retail outlets may hold after holiday sales, avoiding these sales could be in one's best interests.

Bankruptcy: High amounts of debt could disrupt one's life

Issues with debt can affect the lives of individuals in Ohio and elsewhere in a variety of ways. In some cases, substantial financial struggles could disrupt one's ability to pursue his or her dreams of owning a home. Recent studies suggest that this is a concern for many millennials, as they may struggle to afford similar pursuits due to the combination of high debt loads and limited savings. Those who encounter similar concerns could consider pursuing the relief provided through outlets such as bankruptcy.

Recent studies indicate that there are a variety of issues that may influence the options millennials have when attempting to enter the realm of homeownership. These issues may include limited room for growth in income and constant increases to home values. When mixed with the burdens of carrying high amounts of student loan debt, many may feel they may never be able to afford a home.

Wage garnishment -- a misunderstood debt collection practice

Ohio residents who are in serious debt and are dealing with debt collectors may have heard their creditors threaten to garnish their wages in order to obtain the money owed them. The truth is, wage garnishment is not a debt collection practice a creditor can use whenever the creditor feels like it. There is a process they have to go through to get approval to take money straight out of one's paycheck.

When a debt collector threatens to garnish one's wages, do not fret just yet. It is not something that the creditor can get approval to do overnight. Court approval is needed to do it. Debtors are to be informed of any court proceedings so they have the opportunity to present their side of the case to a judge. So, if one receives a notice of a court date, do not miss it.

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