If you’ve fallen behind on bills and decided that filing for bankruptcy is the answer, you’re eventually going to have to discuss it with your spouse. While discharging debt will undoubtedly provide the fresh start you need, discussing your financial struggles can be hard. By keeping the following tips in mind, though, you can ensure the discussion is as productive—and positive—as possible.
3 Tips for Talking to Your Spouse About Filing for Bankruptcy
1. Avoid Assigning Blame
You and your spouse are a team, so at the end of the day, it shouldn't matter who acquired more of the debt you’re now facing. If one of you has a spending problem, it needs to be addressed, but the first step to regaining your financial footing is discharging all applicable debts. You can discuss various ways to cut household spending at a later date. When breaking the news about bankruptcy, keep the conversation focused solely on that to avoid causing conflict.
2. Devise a New Budget
Reviewing the various debts that you owe can be overwhelming. To ensure you end the conversation on a hopeful note, focus instead on the future. Talk about the many advantages of declaring bankruptcy, and mention how you’ll be able to start rebuilding your credit right away. Now is also the time to devise a new household budget. Coming up with a financial plan will give you some sense of control over the situation—and prevent you from ending up in the same precarious position in the future.
3. Go Over the Logistics
Your spouse should know what discharging debt actually entails so you can prepare for the process together. For example, unusually large recent purchases may not be dischargeable in the bankruptcy, so you’ll have to be careful what you purchase on your credit cards prior to filing. You’ll also have to take 2 credit counseling classes (either on line or on the phone).. And if your spouse is concerned about legal fees when it comes time to prepare the petition, reassure them that you can turn to a legal document preparer instead. You can find experienced professional bankruptcy petition preparers that charge affordable fees for completing bankruptcy petitions.
When you’re ready to commence the bankruptcy proceedings, turn to We The People of NY in Manhattan. For more than 25 years, this locally owned and operated company has provided legal document preparation services. Whether you’re filing for bankruptcy or divorce, you can rely on their knowledgeable team to execute all the necessary documents. To learn more about their services, visit their website or call (212) 633-2200.