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Is there life after bankruptcy?

Even if your finances frustrate you and the debt you carry is a burden, the thought of declaring bankruptcy may leave you with too many questions. Most pressing of all those concerns may revolve around the uncertainty of what will happen to you after the completion of the bankruptcy. Will you ever get out from under the stigma of having declared bankruptcy? How will you manage on your own as you attempt to move forward?

It may help to know that you can take some simple steps right away to start reorganizing your financial life after a bankruptcy. In addition, you can turn to some people for help and advice every step of the way.

Baby steps

The hardest hurdle you have to clear may be the one in your head that tells you to feel ashamed for filing for bankruptcy. To overcome this feeling, you may check out support groups online. If you do, you may meet some of the 1.6 million people who seek debt relief each year by filing for bankruptcy. You can also remind yourself of the opportunities you have created for yourself by eliminating some of your debt.

On a practical level, here are some suggestions financial advisors offer to people like you who wonder how to rebound after bankruptcy:

  • Set goals: Give yourself something positive to work toward, such as building up your credit score or establishing an emergency fund.
  • Check your score: Your credit score may influence many opportunities in your life, and errors on your report may negatively affect your chances to repair your credit.
  • Rebuild credit: Slowly improve your score by obtaining one or two new credit cards, using them sparingly and paying them off each month.
  • Deal with the problem: Determine how to fix whatever brought you to bankruptcy in the first place. This may mean finding a new job or creating an airtight budget.

In your eagerness to repair your credit, beware of predatory lenders who often target people who are trying to recover after a bankruptcy. This may include such offers as payday loans and rent-to-own contracts. You may wish to be especially cautious when someone offers to repair your credit score quickly. Remember that the process of rebuilding your credit may take some time.

Your support and advocate

If, after exploring your options, you decide that bankruptcy provides the best way for you to regain your financial footing, you don't have to worry about being alone and uncertain in your choice. Additionally, you may have concerns that you won't receive any direction for rebuilding your life after the process ends.

Having the right attorney on your side may alleviate many of those fears. Your lawyer will not only provide guidance through the bankruptcy, but will also offer help as you set future goals, find sustainable employment and rebuild your credit. A compassionate bankruptcy attorney will express concern about your best interests and future financial stability.

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