An IRS investigation concluded that an out-of-state philanthropist and his late brother are on the hook for billions of dollars in back taxes. He contested the allegations, but a jury ultimately found that both of the brothers hid some of their assets. While an audit from the IRS certainly can occur for Washington tax payers, not everyone may be aware bankruptcy might be a viable solution for this type of debt.
Although bankruptcy can often be one of the best choices to make when facing overwhelming debt, it is not necessarily a life-event that most people anticipate. So what is it that pushes people in Washington toward bankruptcy? As it turns out, there is no single reason that is the driving force behind the need to seek debt relief; rather, there are many complex factors that can influence a person's decision.
Even with the economy on the uptick, credit card debt continues to burden Americans in increasingly higher amounts. One estimate puts the amount of this type of debt at $60 billion by the end of 2015. For Washington consumers, the projected 5 percent increase in credit card debt could tip the scales of financial stability and put some in desperate need of debt relief.
Rarely do Washington residents make the decision to file for bankruptcy easily. However, as bills accrue and harassing calls are received throughout the day, a discussion about bankruptcy may become necessary. Fortunately, we understand that deciding how to handle personal debt requires considerable thought. For that reason, we will take the time to ensure that you have the information that you need before choosing bankruptcy as a debt relief solution.
Bankruptcy is often a person's last chance at settling or clearing away debt and resuming a normal life that isn't haunted by the belligerent calls of creditors demanding money that debtors simply don't have. However, when bankruptcy reform passed, it created a serious road bump for individuals who need help the most. Many people in Washington and across the nation are now facing a troubling dilemma -- they are actually too poor to even file for the bankruptcy protection that they need.
When surveying a Washington individual's financial state, personal debt can be a tricky factor. For some people it can be a creeping progression that inches up week by week or paycheck by paycheck, as in some places the cost of living skyrockets while income remains stagnant. For others, a single emergency or catastrophe can plunge an otherwise financially literate person into the depths of debt. In some instances, bankruptcy can be the most appropriate path to debt relief.
When the housing market collapsed approximately six years ago, many homeowners found themselves in over their heads as they tried to make mortgage payments they could not afford toward a balance that exceeded the current value of their homes. As a result, some Washington families may have wound up losing their homes to foreclosures. To make matters worse, there were several unscrupulous individuals who set up fraudulent businesses in an attempt to take advantage of those who were struggling to keep up with their mortgage debt.
Many homeowners found themselves underwater in their mortgages when the housing market collapsed several years ago. As a result, many families likely experienced difficulties keeping up with their mortgage payments and had to endure harassment from their lender's loan collection efforts. A federal judge recently ordered Bank of America to pay a couple after refusing to honor their no-contact request. Since this bank has customers throughout the country -- including here in Washington -- readers may be interested in learning more.
Several years ago, the housing market crashed and sent prices and property values tumbling. As a result of the severe downturn, many families in Washington lost their homes to foreclosure. Fortunately, some of those families may now have a chance to buy back their homes due to a new policy.
Four years ago, Senator Elizabeth Warren advocated for the creation of a new agency to help protect consumers from predatory lenders. The agency, The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, has now fined a used car dealership over its loan collection efforts. While this particular dealership does not have locations in Washington, residents here may have financed cars through similar businesses.