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Lawrenceburg Indiana Bankruptcy and Estate Planning Blog

Baby boomers and bankruptcy

People in Indiana who are concerned about making their financial ends meet and who may even be contemplating filing for bankruptcy are far from alone. Even as the economy continues to be strong relative to the years of the great recession, many factors are coming together to contribute to the need for multiple consumers to seek debt relief from bankruptcy.

As reported by The Economist, it appears that one generational group in particular may be at a higher risk for bankruptcy than other demographic groups. This would be the baby boom generation. One thing that is interesting to learn about this group is that for the past few decades, they have displayed a high rate of bankruptcy relative to others. This is true of them when they were in the 30s, 40s and now that they are in the 50s, 60s and even into their 70s.

Selecting or updating an executor or trustee

Residents in Indiana who are creating a will or a trust will need to make many decisions. In addition to choosing what they want to happen to their assets after they die, these people will need to identify a person or a team of people that will be responsible for making sure their wishes are properly carried out. But, the reality is that there is far more to the job of an executor or a trustee than asset distribution.

As Forbes explains, there are many legal and financial responsibilities to being someone's trustee or executor. For these reasons, people should avoid rushing in to name someone to these roles based soley on relationship. These decisions should not be made by popularity vote and can benefit from being evaluated more like a business decision. An executor, for example, will need to ensure all taxes are properly filed and debts are paid before any assets are distributed.

Chapter 13 and mortgages

When many people in Indiana think about a personal bankruptcy, they may be unaware that there are different types. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy that may leave a person without their family home seems to be the most well-known type of plan. However, there is another option and it may well be the right one for the homeowner who wants to save their home from foreclosure. That option is a Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

As explained by the United States Courts, Chapter 13 bankruptcies differ from Chapter 7 plans in that instead of having all debts discharged, consumers are essentially put on a repayment plan. The plan lasts anywhere from 36 months to 60 months depending on part on the amount of debt involved and the income of the consumer. The amount of the monthly payments should be considerably less than what the consumer would have otherwise paid. It is through this reduced amount that relief from the excessive debt is realized.

Attorneys can aid in personal representative duties

Your parent, before passing away, named you the personal representative of their estate. You worry that because you do not know your exact responsibilities, you may not serve as the best personal representative.

Personal representatives make specific choices for their executor's property and assets after the executor has passed away. Your role involves serious responsibility, and you want to understand the basic tasks that a personal representative takes on before you make decisions about assets. Because of the quantity of work, you may find it necessary to hire an estate planning attorney to help you divide assets of your parent's estate. Doing so, you can properly serve as a personal representative for your loved one.

What debts can be erased with Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

As a resident of Indiana, there are a number of different options available to you if you feel like you need to file for bankruptcy. Each type comes with its own benefits and drawbacks. Today we'll take a look at Chapter 7 bankruptcy and the types of debts that it can erase.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is also known as liquidation bankruptcy due to the fact that in exchange for debt forgiveness, your assets may be liquidated. These are your nonexempt assets. They can include things like:

  • Investments
  • Property that isn't your main home
  • Valuable artwork or collections
  • Jewelry
  • Cars
  • Expensive clothing

Estate planning for remarried couples

If you are one of the many people in Indiana who has been married and then divorced or perhaps has been widowed and now you are contemplating getting married again, you have good reason to feel positive about your future. However, despite your natural inclination to focus on all of the joys you have to look forward to, it is equally important that you put plans in place to protect and provide for the people you love in the way you want to.

As Forbes indicates, estate planning for blended families is something that may have multiple layers involved with it. This is because many blended families include children from prior marriages on one or both sides and may even include children born into the new family. Then, when one spouse dies, there may be disputes between different parties about who gets what. The more these decisions are made by the person and ahead of time, the better chance there may be of avoiding these problems after a death.

Can I make gifts in my will conditional?

Drafting a will to pass on your inheritance to your children is sometimes not a clear cut proposition. Some parents worry that their children will squander their inheritance on frivolous purchases, but at the same time they could never bear the thought of leaving their children with nothing. A simpler choice for Indiana parents with these concerns is to attach conditions for their children to receive the inheritance. According to Findlaw, you can make passing down assets in your will conditional, but there are caveats.

Basically, the kinds of conditions you can place on gifts take the form of general encouragement for the heir to perform or not perform a certain action. If you are concerned that your child is a spendthrift, you can require money to be spent in certain ways, such as on a place to live. If you want your child to complete a college education, you can set aside some of the inheritance for college bills.

How do I rebound financially after bankruptcy?

If you have filed for bankruptcy in Indiana or maybe are considering filing for bankruptcy, one of the things that may well be on your mind is how you can get back on your financial feet after the bankruptcy is discharged. Certainly a better future is a large reason why you chose to file bankruptcy and you should be happy to know that this is very much possible if you take the right steps.

As explained by NerdWallet, one of the key things you will want to focus on after you receive your bankruptcy discharge is rebuilding your credit. Your score right after bankruptcy will likely be relatively low but may get a boost because your debt to income ratio has improved. However, now the real work begins where you must obtain credit, use that credit and repay that credit without any blips on the radar screen.

How financial struggle erodes mental decision-making processes

It’s not hard to understand the relationship between financial struggle and poor decision making. But consider the possibility that due to the economic conflict, your rational decision-making abilities are hindered going forward. The psychological burden of money problems often makes planning and organizing your life highly challenging to accomplish. As a result, an unhealthy cycle of depression and inability to solve money problems usually develops.

It’s similar to the physical feeling of being unable to breathe. Your decision-making lung capacity is restricted by the big money worries you carry with you. Scientific research has recently backed up the dynamic between struggling financially and impeded mental processing.

Secured and unsecured credit

If you are one of the many people in Indiana who cringes every time you look at your bank balance or go to the mailbox and see a pile of bills waiting for you, you may well be wondering how you can get out from under a seemingly endless supply of debt. In evaluating your options for this and for creating a brighter financial future for yourself, it is important that you understand the differences in the two primary forms of debt - secured and unsecured.

As explained by NerdWallet, with unsecured debt there is no risk that you will lose a precious asset because the debt is not associated with any particular item. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, these type of debts are generally discharged and no further action is needed. Examples of unsecured debt include most credit cards, medical bills and even student loans.

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