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Chapter 7 bankruptcy to aid furniture shop owners

A long-standing tourist attraction on a quaint New England main street is closing up shop, according to local business news. LaFlamme's, a furniture store in a rural part of a nearby state, has been a mainstay of the local business scene for some 50 years. However, its ownership has decided to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, citing unmanageable debt. Connecticut business owners may recognize this as a difficult but ultimately positive step for the owners to take to ensure their ability to compete effectively in the free market. 

LaFlamme's has specialized in furniture sales for many years, but by the last quarter of 2017, the company had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. A difficult sales period in early January, put down to poor weather conditions and a lack of local traffic by management, forced company ownership to consider other options. Ultimately, the decision was made to switch the filing to Chapter 7 liquidation. 

How Chapter 7 bankruptcy can help

Debt is on the minds of a lot of Americans following what is often a costly holiday season. Connecticut residents may have spent more than they intended on gifts this year, leading some to re-evaluate their spending habits. But for some residents, debt is a far more challenging issue to overcome. In those circumstances, an experienced attorney can hep to determine how best to handle their debt issues, and for some, this could mean Chapter 7 bankruptcy relief. 

Simply put, Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a way for debt to be formally discharged by a bankruptcy court. It is the most common form of bankruptcy, and is used to discharge certain types of unsecured debt, including credit card debts and medical debt. Other types of debt, including student loans and alimony payments, cannot usually be discharged in a Chapter 7 filing. 

Seeking debt relief following the holiday season

The end of the calendar year is a time of celebration for many faiths the country over. Connecticut residents may be tempted to overspend during the holiday season in an effort to spread goodwill and generosity to friends and family, but this can also land them in a serious debt problem moving into 2018. Thankfully, debt relief options are available that range from consolidation to bankruptcy. 

Many people use credit cards to make purchases above and beyond what they might be able to immediately afford during the holiday season, but this can be a debt trap. Once the holidays are over, the "credit card hangover" can kick in, causing interest to pile up in the new year. For households that were already handling debt issues, this can make an existing problem even worse. 

Finding debt relief support in Connecticut

It is not uncommon for Connecticut residents and others throughout the nation to experience financial problems in the first months following a new year. When a need for debt relief arises, it can be quite challenging to determine which options are available and where to turn for help. This is why doing a bit of research ahead of time is always a good idea.

Most financial crises are temporary and obtaining the best outcome possible is often a matter of accessing the most viable options that suit a particular need as well as long-term financial goals. However, it's easy to become overwhelmed when creditors are hounding you with phone calls and your mortgage lender may be threatening foreclosure. If you don't have a debt relief plan in mind, such stress can cloud your thinking and make it difficult to find a reasonable solution to your money problems.

Conflict between competing companies ends in Chapter 7 bankruptcy

A commercial real estate data company is closing its doors following an extended legal battle with a competitor, according to business news. Connecticut data enthusiasts may be familiar with Xceligent Inc, which has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the wake of a legal battle with CoStar Group, Inc. CoStar had previously accused Xceligent of corporate espionage.

In Dec. 2016, CoStar went to federal court to sue Xceligent for "widespread" theft of photos and data that were the property of CoStar. Xceligent countersued only seven months later, claiming CoStar had been engaged in anticompetitive activity and attempts to form a monopoly. The companies were engaged in serious negotiations pertaining to both suits when talks broke down. 

Seeking debt relief for seniors

As the American population ages, more and more senior citizens are finding themselves in challenging financial situations. Indeed, in some cases, women in particular who survive their spouses, or whose spouses are no longer able to make decisions themselves, are faced with daunting decisions to make. This is particularly true if the family is already in debt. Thankfully, debt relief options are available here in Connecticut to help these individuals restore their financial stability. 

Immediately, many financial advisors will recommend that elderly people seek the support of trusted younger family members in helping to determine the best course of action. Senior citizens can struggle with a litany of age-related illnesses that can influence their ability to make sound decisions for themselves. The help of family in this instance can be invaluable. 

Debt relief: Use of credit cards on the rise

It should come as no surprise that one of the most tenacious forms of debt is credit card debt. Connecticut residents seeking debt relief are often doing so as a result of unsustainable credit card debt. This may be partly due to the fact that credit cards are seeing more use now than ever before, prompting some consumers to seek alternate sources of credit. 

In the first quarter of 2017 alone, over 171 million customers accessed credit cards. Estimates say households in the United States combine to make up some $1 trillion in credit card debt. Thanks to ease of access, this form of "revolving credit" has been on the rise for the last 10 years. Lenders who offer below average rates only add to the incentive to use credit, sometimes unwisely. 

Identifying the value of Chapter 7 bankruptcy

For many Americans, debt is a real and pressing concern in their day-to-day lives. Here in Connecticut, many families carry a variety of debt, the most troubling being unsecured credit card debt, which can be notoriously difficult to pay down due to high interest rates. For those in dire straits, Chapter 7 bankruptcy could be a viable alternative, but it is important to understand what such a filing entails. 

In general, Chapter 7 bankruptcy (also known as liquidation bankruptcy) involves filing in a local bankruptcy court and being assigned a trustee to help navigate the process. Chapter 7 targets unsecured debts like personal loans, credit cards and medical debt. In some cases, a bankruptcy court is in a position to forgive debts of this kind. While the record of this erasure remains on a credit score for ten years, it has the power to remove the impending spectre of immediate debt. 

More senior citizens file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy

There has been a rise over the last few years of senior citizens filing for bankruptcy. Here in Connecticut and elsewhere in the nation, more and more people over the age of 65 are using Chapter 7 bankruptcy as a way to offset mounting debts that can result from a variety of sources unique to the elderly. In many cases, seniors have reported a definite upward trend in their quality of life once they are out from under the burden of unsustainable debt. 

For many seniors, medical debt is the biggest reason people over 65 file for bankruptcy. This is particularly true of seniors who have lost their spouses, and even more so for women in this situation. Often, women of this age bracket suffer from a lack of financial literacy, as their husbands were traditionally responsible for the family's financial affairs. If the husband passes away before the wife, which is common given women tend to live longer than men, the senior women left behind can understandably struggle with their finances. 

Paying down credit cards sometimes involves debt relief

Far and away, one of the most challenging debts to overcome is credit card debt. Connecticut households, like most American households, carry an average of $18,000 in credit debt alone, which can be a daunting task to pay down for even the most frugal individuals. Thankfully, there are debt relief strategies available, though which one is best for a given situation can vary based on the individual or family involved. 

For households that do not qualify for balance transfers or loans, some experts suggest the so-called "snowball" method. This method involves choosing the credit card with the lowest balance and paying it off first while still paying the minimum on other cards. The card with the next-lowest balance follows, and so on. This can be psychologically helpful as paying off one card entirely can help motivate the card holder to continue positive habits.