Would it be advisable for my 74 year old Mother to file Bankruptcy? If so how much would it cost and if not why?

Asked over 1 year ago - Bradenton, FL

My Mother has credit card debt with 3 creditors, one is $6700, one is $1700 and the last is about $200. She receives approximately $1075.00 monthly in social security and is her only income. She lives with her sister who has Alzheimers and is the main caregiver for her. She has medical bills/insurance as well as car insurance to pay so by the time she pays all that she may have $10.00 left at the end of the month. She is also a co signer for a loan for her grandaughter's Salle Mae school loan so if she did file Bankruptcy would that be affected? Thank you in advance for any advice you can provide.

Attorney answers (6)

  1. Richard Allan Heller

    Contributor Level 13


    Lawyers agree


    Answered . I agree with my colleague. In many cases a person who is on fixed income social security, with no real assets and real estate, will not file bankruptcy as they are deemed judgment proof (ie. even if the creditor obtains a judgment, there are no assets or funds to pay the judgment). However, some people will file to avoid the harassment of a senior citizen, although there may be non-bankruptcy options in that regard. The is a question to be posed to a good bankruptcy attorney.

    Have her obatin a consultation from a good bankruptcy attorney who can evaluate her circumstances and issues to provide the best advice.

    The response given is general in nature and based upon limited information. It does not and cannot replace that... more
  2. Scott Benjamin Riddle

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Your grandmother needs to see a Bankruptcy lawyer. This is not a decision made after a couple sentences of second hand information, beyond some general observations. A lawyer will have many more questions that need to be answered. They can also tell you how much they will charge (this website is not a law firm that handles cases and quotes fees - though lawyers in the areas may respond with a range).

  3. Kevin Christopher Gleason


    Contributor Level 16


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . I agree with the other answers that one cannot get good advice here with the level of detail lacking in the question. It is up to your mother to make the decision after consultation with an attorney. Just superficially, it appears that your mother is a candidate for Chapter 7.

    Posting questions anonymously and receiving general answers do not substitute for consulting with an attorney... more
  4. Sherri Lynn Johnson


    Contributor Level 8

    Answered . Based on the information you have provided, it sounds as if your mother is probably judgment-proof, meaning that even if she defaulted, her creditors would not be able to collect anything from her. However, as my colleagues above have noted, filing bankruptcy could possibly give her some peace of mind and protect her from harassment. To make an informed decision, she should really consult with a bankruptcy attorney, so that she understands all of her options. Regarding fees, the court charges a filing fee of $306. Attorney's fees vary, but I can tell you that my fees for a chapter 7 begin at $1,300, but can be higher, depending on the circumstances.

  5. William Joseph Kopp Jr.

    Contributor Level 12

    Answered . These are some of the most common types of cases. Pull a credit report to see if there is any more debt out there. We do these cases very cheap because we do them all the time. Meet with a BK lawyer!

  6. Diane L Gruber


    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyer agrees


    Answered . If your mother's entire income comes from SS, she is "judgment proof" as creditors cannot garnish SS. To give her peace of mind, I suggest she consult with a bankruptcy attorney. Good luck.

    Be sure to designate "best answer." If you live in Oregon, you may call me for more detailed advice, 503-650-9662.... more

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Bankruptcy is a legal way for people or businesses who are no longer capable of paying back their bills to clear these debts and start over.

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