A person can fall into debt for any number of reasons. A sudden medical expense, for example, can quickly wipe out a consumer's savings and leave him or her in a great deal of financial trouble. A lost job can also force a person to default on their loans, and perhaps lead to bankruptcy. Sometimes, personal bankruptcy is simply the result of poor money management.
Being in credit card debt is very stressful for most consumers. Many people are all too familiar with the idea of watching one's debts pile up, getting late payment notices and perhaps even calls from debt collectors. It's a difficult situation to deal with.
We've all seen them in television commercials: images of a woman struggling with a calculator, an exhausted man speaking on the phone, and a voiceover asking "Are you in debt? We can consolidate your debt into one low monthly payment!"
In a recent poll, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling found that approximately one in five Americans believe that carrying a certain amount of credit card debt is "a responsible way to manage his or her finances." The results are shocking, as nearly every financial expert would disagree with the assertion in very strong terms.
Bankruptcy is a powerful tool that allows people in debt to discharge their financial obligations and start again with a clean slate. For thousands of consumers, it is the only option for those who are unable to get out from under high levels of credit card debt or insurmountable medical bills.