How to you know when you should file for bankruptcy?

UPDATED: Jun 2, 2011

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How to you know when you should file for bankruptcy?

In 2006 I had a foreclosure and became homeless. I also have 2 judgements open – one in small claims, one in civil. I have been under the radar all this time but will be getting a good job. Should I file bankruptcy or is there statute of limitations that would enable me to wait it out? I am afraid of wage garnishment and am trying to get my life up and going again.

Asked on June 2, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

There are statutes of limitations that apply to judgment debts. However, you are not likely to be able to "wait it out"--the statute of limitations on judgments in Florida is twenty (20) years, so even if the judgements date to 2006, they can be enforced until 2026.

You should speak with a bankruptcy attorney to evaluate whether bankruptcy is right for you--and also which kind of bankruptcy, chapter 7 or chapter 13. Note that the key answer is usually how much you owe--since bankruptcy has a very drastic effect on credit, for many years, if it's an amount you think you *could* pay, even if you don't want to, you're often better off without filing bankruptcy. Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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