This might seem a bit counterintuitive, but it is true. If you are a New Jersey resident who has been unemployed for more than six months, and you have no realistic job prospects for the future, then now is the time to file bankruptcy.

As I have pointed out on this site, many people in this situation might think that they cannot afford to do so. Besides, what can they do to me? I'm judgment proof. Well, the answer is that that will not always be the situation for you, and if things improve for you significantly, it might become more difficult for you to file bankruptcy in the future.

This is for two reasons:

Income/Means Testing

Ever since 2005, the bankruptcy code has required the courts to look at both your last six months of income, as well as your income for the foreseeable future. The first part is called "means testing" and presumes your gross annual income to be twice that of the past six months.

If you have been on unemployment, or that income dried up, then that income is most likely not going to create a problem for you filing bankruptcy. A the same time, if you have no realistic job prospects, then this is also the same for the foreseeable future. If you were to wait until you have a job again, that income might be high enough to restrict your options.


If you are upside down on your home, then there is no home equity that could be at risk in bankruptcy. Even if you are not under water, and you do have some equity, chances are, in this real estate market, it isn't much and can be protected by exemptions.

However, if you were to wait until after the market recovers, that equity could be enough to be at risk as homes start selling faster. Believe it or not, this is the best time for you to file bankruptcy and it is a good investment in the future.

I Can Help!

If all of this sounds like you, you have been trying to decide whether bankruptcy is the right choice, and you live in the Gloucester County area, please feel free to call my office at 856-432-4113 or contact me through this site to schedule an appointment to review your options.

If you are looking for more information on how bankruptcy might help you with your divorce, then you should download my free book, Top Questions Divorcing Couples Ask About NJ Bankruptcy.

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Steven J. Richardson
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Bankruptcy, Collections, Student Loan, DUI and Traffic Court attorney in Woodbury, NJ.
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