Well Now That I Have My Bankruptcy Discharge. What Happens?
Even if you are over the age of 65, after receiving your bankruptcy discharge, you should obtain a copy of your credit report. Federal law allows you to obtain one free credit report from each of the “big three” credit reporting agencies: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. To obtain this free credit report it is best to go to www.AnnualCreditReport.com.
Senior citizens, after getting their bankruptcy discharge, want to obtain their credit report in order to check the report for errors. First make sure debts discharged in your bankruptcy are listed on your report as “Discharged in Bankruptcy” and have a zero balance. Second, there should be no negative activity reported on your credit report after the date you filed your bankruptcy. Third, if you did not listen to your bankruptcy attorney and decided to reaffirm a debt make sure the reaffirmed debt is not listed as “discharged in bankruptcy,” so you at least get credit for making on time payments. Finally, if there is incorrect information on your credit report dispute the inaccurate information with the credit agency by certified mail return receipt requested. An example of an inaccurate report is a vehicle that was surrendered in a bankruptcy should not be listed on your credit report as a “repossessed vehicle.”
Correcting errors on your report can be done online or through the mail. Do not use the online method regardless of how simple it makes life. Always dispute inaccurate information by certified mail return receipt requested. One the credit reporting agency has updated your credit report you are entitled to a new free credit report to make sure your report is updated and correct. You should obtain the updated report and actually review the report, do not assume the report has been updated correctly. Sometimes it takes several disputes with the credit agency and supply your bankruptcy information to get this dispute resolved. No one from the bankruptcy, your bankruptcy attorney, or your former creditors are responsible for sending information to the credit reporting agencies about your bankruptcy case.
Reviewing your credit report and disputing any errors is the first step to recovery and the road to rebuilding your credit score for the future. Financial life after bankruptcy should not be as hard a financial life as before bankruptcy. Generally, as long as you have a steady income you are a better credit risk. You are a better credit risk because a new credit knows you do not owe anyone. Plus, you cannot file bankruptcy again for 8 years, so they know they have you making payments for at least the next 8 years. Keep making timely payments on the debts you reaffirmed and monitor your credit report for the next few years and your credit score should increase quickly
If you are a senior in need of financial relief from your debts, bankruptcy may be your solution. At Elder Needs Law, PLLC, most of what we do is consumer asset protection. We protect assets from the government, nursing homes, spouses, family members, and creditors. Please consult with a bankruptcy professional that focuses their practice on the senior population. You have more options than you might think, and some options have hidden costs and fees you want to avoid. You owe it to your family to weigh all your options and to be fully informed with a plan of action in place. Please contact Elder Needs Law, PLLC at 305-614-7379 or look us up on the web at www.ElderNeedsLaw.com for more information on how the asset protection attorneys at Elder Needs Law, PLLC can help you and your family.