Richard J. Shurtz, Attorney at Law

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January 2015 Archives

Ready to stop the harassing calls? Consider Chapter 13 bankruptcy

For some, debt can creep up slowly, while for others, a single large emergency can plunge them into nearly unfathomable debt. We understand that most people want to pay back what they owe, but with creditors constantly harassing them for more and more payments, it can quickly become overwhelming. Unlike a Chapter 7 filing, Chapter 13 bankruptcy can help people resolve their debt by creating a manageable payment plan.

Medical debt burdens majority of Americans

The notion that those in debt for medical expenses are uninsured may not be an uncommon presumption in Washington. On the surface it appears to make sense, as the general purpose of health insurance is to absorb the majority of the costs from doctor and hospital visits. Surprisingly, a recent report revealed that most of those struggling with medical debt actually have health insurance but are still struggling due to the crushing debt.

Which debts are non-dischargeable in Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Washington consumers who are experiencing financial instability because they have no stable employment may benefit from the protection of personal bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy may also be referred to as a liquidation bankruptcy, and while it will discharge most unsecured debts, non-exempt assets will be liquidated, and the proceeds distributed to creditors. However, some debts will not be discharged, and creditors may claim that a particular debt is non-dischargeable.

With consumer spending growth comes credit card debt

Consumer spending tendencies are measured by analysis of credit card debts, and the latest figures apparently show a rapidly improving economy. However, the analysis indicates that a significant percentage of consumer spending is done with credit cards. While this fuels economic growth, it may lead to more consumers in Washington and other states considering Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy due to overwhelming credit card debt.

Records show public hospitals sue patients for medical debt

The purpose of a public hospital is to provide care that is paid for by government funding, which is the majority of care providers for the un- and under-insured. Since these medical care institutions are considered non-profit, it may be surprising to learn that some of these hospitals are aggressively pursuing payments for medical debt from some of their poorest patients. A recent report attempted to expose some of the problems that poorer patients have experienced with some of these health care facilities. While none of the medical facilities included in this report are located in Washington, there may be many residents here who are struggling to pay medical and other bills. However, there are options -- including bankruptcy -- for dealing with these overwhelming debts.