There is a new trend among those who turn to bankruptcy to resolve their financial difficulties. A recent report out of an institute that closely follows consumer bankruptcy developments details how older Americans are finding bankruptcy as the only way to fix their financial situations.  

Once the report was published, several newspapers and many online news organizations reported on the results. For older Americans with financial troubles, the results may be distressing. The report details how Americans over the age of 65 have filed for bankruptcy at double the rate that that they used to.

Causes and Corrections

The report not only detailed the fact that more older Americans are filing for bankruptcy, but that their economic picture as a whole is more distressing. The causes behind these trends are many.  For one, money is not as valuable today as it was in the past because of inflation. The rate of social security payments has not kept up with the rate of inflation and the cost of living in general.

To counteract these ills, many older Americans have returned to the workforce. Jobs that seniors work include part-time and gig jobs that they must do to fill in the gap. Another important tool for seniors is an increased reliance on credit cards and other high interest debts that provide bridges from one check to another.

The combined pressure of rising costs and slowly or non-existent wage increases has taken a toll on the senior population. This in turn has led to an increase in bankruptcies filed. Commonly, seniors will file bankruptcy in an effort to become free from:

  • Health care bills
  • Credit card debts
  • Co-signer loans
  • Car payments
  • Payday loans

An important aspect of this picture is what it means for future generations if these trends continue. It also illustrates how one financial burdens can stack on top of another to build financial pressures over time  

Bankruptcy as a Fresh Start

If there is a silver lining in this story it is that seniors are eligible for bankruptcy as a tool to relieve the financial pressures they face every day. Far from enjoying their golden years, many older Americans are finding that the bills pile just as high with the kids gone and in retirement.  This is especially true when the cost of living is factored into the picture.

There are several options available to older Americans seeking protection in bankruptcy. These include protecting a homestead, retirement funds, and more. But every case is fact specific, and bankruptcy requires professional legal advice to be analyzed and implemented properly. Luckily, there is help in California for those seeking relief from their overwhelming debt.  

If you are looking for answers to your financial problems and want to consider bankruptcy, there is help available. At the Bankruptcy Law Center, our team of skilled legal professionals has the experience and knowledge that enables us to help you make informed decisions. There are laws to protect you, and bankruptcy can be the fresh start that you need. Contact us today for more information.

(image courtesy of Alex Boyd)