How Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Can Help Durham County Consumers Dig Out of Debt
From US 501 down to I-40, Durham is home to almost 240,000 people, many of them still reeling from the recent employment downturn and trying to put their finances back together. For those that got behind on mortgage payments or ran up their credit cards when times were tough, it may be hard to figure out how to get current on your debts. We can help.
Have you been sent a foreclosure notice on your home?
While foreclosures are down in many areas of NC, in Durham they are up dramatically. Between December and January (the most recent period reported), foreclosures were up more than 12% and when you look at January 2014 compared to the same time last year, the increase is a staggering 64%. There was a period where mortgage companies were lax in enforcing foreclosures because property values were on the decline, but now that the local real estate market is rebounding, lenders are picking up the slack and filing foreclosures.
If you've received a notice that your home is being foreclosed on, you have a couple of options. Do nothing and your home will be sold at auction and you'll have to move out. But what's worse is that there is usually a balance owing for the difference between the auction sale price of the home and the mortgage balance that your lender can pursue. To avoid this, you can file either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you have little equity in your home, Chapter 7 will allow you to turn the home back over and discharge the loan balance. If you have equity and want to keep your home, a Chapter 13 can give you the breathing room to catch up on your payments.
Are you drowning in credit card debt?
If you've had a bout of unemployment, have had your hours cut back or have been forced to take a job outside of your area of expertise at a lower wage, you may have fallen back on credit cards to pay for necessities. Credit cards should be used rarely and paid off in full each month. But during tough economic times, far too many Durham residents have maxed out their cards to pay the bills, buy groceries and put gas in their car to get to work. Once cards are at their limit, it's hard to get them back under control.
If you pay just the minimum payments, your balances will never go down. If you miss a payment or pay late, you'll incur over limit fees and late payment fees. This can trigger your interest rates to increase because you violated your payment terms. This will create a perfect storm of debt that can be difficult (or impossible) to recover from without intervention. We can help with this. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can wipe out all of your credit card balances and get you free of this debt-related stress. In a Chapter 13, you'll get extra time to catch up on your bills and much of your unsecured debt should be discharged at the end of your payment plan, no matter how much the remaining balances are.
Let the Expert Attorney at the Law Offices of John T. Orcutt Help You
No matter what financial stress you're experiencing, we can help. If it's credit cards, medical bills, online payday loans, garnishment, auto repossession or home foreclosure, let us show you how you can get a financial fresh start today. Depending on your income, assets and debts, we can explain the benefits of Chapter 13 versus Chapter 7. We can look at your records and see which plan you qualify for and advise which is preferable for your specific circumstances.
Call the law offices of John T Orcutt for a free consultation at our Durham location conveniently located off US 501 at Hillandale road. Let us help you get out of debt today.