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Older Americans Turn to Bankruptcy in Kansas City

Bankruptcy can relieve debtors from liability for some unsecured debts and prevent creditors from taking collection actions. According to a July 2009 Bloomberg report, there were 675,351 consumer bankruptcy filings in the first half of 2009, a 36.5 percent increase over 2008 numbers. Older Americans have experienced the sharpest increase in bankruptcy filings, jumping from 8.2 percent of debtors in 1991 to 22.3 percent in 2007, according to a study by the Consumer Bankruptcy Project, as reported by The Associated Press. The study found that Americans 55 and older accounted for approximately 8 percent of bankruptcies filed in 2001. But by 2007 Americans 55 and older represented 22 percent of bankruptcy filings. The increase was also found by the Public Policy Institute of the AARP (American Association of Retired Persons). Harvard Law Professor Elizabeth Warren, author of the study, also found that the median age for bankruptcy filers had increased…
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What Property Can I Keep?

Missouri Bankruptcy Exemptions Let’s say you are thinking about filing for a Missouri bankruptcy, and you are wondering about the fate of your home, vehicle and other property. It is natural to worry when you are in the position to consider a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy on top of the anxiety you may already be feeling from financial troubles. You don’t want to lose your home. You don’t want to lose your vehicle. There is hope – keep reading. Standard Bankruptcy Exemptions in Missouri The state of Missouri offers certain exemptions so that you can keep your property after filing for bankruptcy. When property is “exempt,” this means that the bankruptcy trustee cannot take or sell the property to pay creditors. The biggest exemption is for home equity, but most people are able to keep much more property, as well. For married couples filing jointly, some exemption amounts…
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Five Personal Finance Habits That May Improve Your Credit Scores

Your credit scores can have a major impact on several areas of your life. These scores, which are calculated from the information in your three credit reports, determine where you can live and which loan terms you receive from lenders. Credit scores can even affect the type of job offers you receive. If you have poor credit scores, the good news is that they are not permanent. You can always adopt new personal finance habits to improve your credit scores. The following personal finance habits may help you achieve this goal. Pull your credit reports often. Pull your credit reports as often as possible. You can pull your reports from Equifax, Experian and TransUnion once per year for free. However, you should try to pull these reports twice per year at a minimum. If you are able, try to pull your credit reports once every four months. Look for mistakes,…
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Car Leases in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Car leases in Chapter 7 bankruptcy can either be assumed or rejected. If you assume the car lease, you remain legally liable for the original lease contract. When you reject your lease, you surrender the vehicle and have no further liability for lease payments or fees. If you are considering bankruptcy and are currently leasing a vehicle, an experienced Kansas City bankruptcy attorney can explain all of your bankruptcy options, including what will happen to your car lease in Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Assuming a Car Lease Depending on the lease terms and your overall financial situation, assuming a car lease in Chapter 7 bankruptcy may benefit you in the long run. Below are some reasons to consider assuming a car lease: Lease payments are low — if you reject the lease, you will have to give back the vehicle, and getting another vehicle right after bankruptcy might…
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