Many people believe that there is something shameful about filing bankruptcy. They see it as a failure to honor a commitment that they made to their creditors upon which they are now reneging. In their minds, it is morally wrong.
Bankruptcy Is Not Morally Wrong
Nothing could be further from the truth, however! I was in a Baptist church yesterday attending the presentation of two children born into my extended family, when the pastor gave a sermon on Deuteronomy, chapter 15, verses 1 to 11. I was quite struck with the words:
At the end of every seven years you must cancel debts. This is how it is to be done: Every creditor shall cancel any loan they have made to a fellow Israelite. They shall not require payment from anyone among their own people, because the Lord’s time for canceling debts has been proclaimed. (Verses 1 and 2).
What is even more interesting is that, until October of 2005, the bankruptcy laws allowed people to file a (chapter 7) bankruptcy once every 7 years! Although the 2005 revisions changed this to 8 years, you can see the Scriptural parallel!
Forgive Yourself Along With Your Debts
So, if your time has come, it’s okay. It is in the cycle of things that debts be forgiven, especially if they weigh you down so much that you find little happiness in your life. Discharge is also called “debt forgiveness.” If your creditors can forgive you your debts, you can forgive yourself for being unable to pay!
You're Not Giving Up Either!
I have been helping folks here in the Woodbury, Gloucester County, area for over 20 years now, and I have seen where people have just felt too ashamed to pull the trigger. They live on the hope that they will get a job, or a better job, or modify their mortgage, or refinance their home, and they won't have to file. That would be giving up.
Those That File Are Glad They Did!
The irony of the whole thing is that I have had clients tell me that filing bankruptcy was the best thing they ever did! The bad times are past, and they can see themselves climbing out of the hole.
Part of the tragedy of this is that the "never give up" people could have felt that renewal, but are denying it to themselves. But the real tragedy is that they often dig the hole even deeper before giving themselves permission to climb out of it. They
- take money out of their pensions
- take risky high interest payday or car title loans, or
- let a creditor's collection efforts get so far along that their wages are attached or their bank account is frozen.
Rather than dig the hole deeper, you should climb out of it and move on! Find out if it is the right solution to your situation. Then, if it is, don't wait. You are not giving up; you are not doing anything wrong; you are moving on.
I Can Help
If you live here in the Gloucester County area, and have been considering bankruptcy, don't wait. Feel free to give my office a call at 856-432-4113 or contact me through this site to schedule an appointment in my Woodbury office to talk about your situation.
If you are looking for more information on bankruptcy, then download my free book, Top Questions People Ask About Filing Bankruptcy in New Jersey.
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