The coronavirus pandemic has changed the world. But in addition to affecting the day-to-day lives of people worldwide, as well as tragically taking the lives of more than two million people, coronavirus has changed the world economy. Not only has the pandemic had a big impact on stock markets, it has also made for a difficult year for job-seekers, has resulted in rising rates of unemployment, and has left the majority of countries in recession.
Today, a number of prominent firms have buckled under the economic pressure and have filed or are planning to file for bankruptcy, and a coming wave of COVID-related bankruptcies is expected. While economic relief in the form of the CARES Act, the Paycheck Protection Program, and the extension of unemployment insurance has helped both businesses and individuals alike, many of the federal loans allocated to businesses didn’t reach those who needed it most, and for many, more assistance is necessary.
Economic Relief: What We Can Expect from the Government
A recent fact sheet published by the White House paints a grim picture of the economic situation in America. According to the fact sheet, approximately 14 million renters are behind on payments, more than 10 million Americans are unemployed, and at least eight million children are facing food insecurity. Communities of color have been hit even harder by the crisis.
On January 22, 2021, President Biden released an executive order aimed at mitigating the financial impacts of the coronavirus and providing families with the much-needed relief they’ve been waiting for. The order asks the Department of Agriculture to expand nutritional assistance programs, asks the Treasury Department to focus on getting financial relief to the Americans who have still not received the financial assistance to which they’re entitled, asks the Department of Veterans Affairs to pause collections on debts, and more. In addition to the executive order, Biden’s stimulus plan includes adding $1,400 stimulus checks for eligible individuals.
It Might Still Not Be Enough
While the proposed stimulus package may give many families the boost they need, for others, an additional $1,400 won’t be enough to stop creditors from calling. For these families and individuals, options may feel limited and the financial future might feel hopeless. As stated earlier, it is likely that many individuals will turn to bankruptcy in the coming year.
Filing for bankruptcy can be an intimidating process and, while bankruptcy can provide someone with a fresh financial start, it does have long-term consequences. To be sure, filing for bankruptcy will result in a big hit to a person’s credit score, which can impede their ability to secure loans, lines of credit, and even certain employment types in some cases.
If you are thinking about bankruptcy, it is important to meet with a financial professional, a bankruptcy attorney, or both as soon as possible. A professional can guide you through all of your options for debt relief, including negotiating with your creditors, refinancing or restructuring your mortgage, and debt consolidation. If filing for bankruptcy is the best option, then an attorney can help you to understand the two primary types of bankruptcy for individuals–Chapter 7 and Chapter 13–and which one is best suited for your case.
Get an Analysis Early
One thing that’s important when facing debt and feeling nervous about your financial future is to meet with a professional sooner rather than later to get an analysis. While meeting with a professional might feel intimidating or even embarrassing, getting control of your financial situation and educating yourself about your options is the most responsible thing that you can do. Additionally, the earlier that you take action, the more options that may be available; if you wait too long to manage your debt, bankruptcy might be the only option.
During this challenging time, many individuals and families are struggling with debt. This is nothing to be ashamed of. The best thing that you can do for yourself is to consult with a professional who can review your situation and make a recommendation about how you should move forward.
Call the Law Offices of Ted Stuckenschneider, P.C. Today
The coronavirus pandemic will likely have lasting economic effects on families, individuals, businesses, the United States economy, and the global economy. If you are someone who is struggling to make ends meet during this time and are simultaneously facing large amounts of debt, bankruptcy may be a way to get relief. Call our experienced Alabama bankruptcy lawyer directly today at (205) 324-5631 for the legal support and guidance that you need during this challenging time.