Should Senior Citizens File for Bankruptcy?


As people advance in age, their financial situation can become more complicated. Many senior citizens are living on a fixed income, and unexpected expenses or medical bills can quickly spiral out of control.

For some, filing for bankruptcy may be the best option to regain control of their finances. Let's explore the pros and cons of senior citizens filing for bankruptcy and what you need to know.

Why Do Senior Citizens File for Bankruptcy?

Senior citizens may need to file for bankruptcy for many of the same reasons anyone else might need to seek debt relief.

The most common reasons for bankruptcy include the following:

  • Medical bills: As we age, our medical care needs may increase, and medical expenses can quickly pile up. Even with Medicare or other insurance, medical bills can be a significant financial burden for many senior citizens.
  • Credit card debt: Many seniors may have accumulated credit card debt over time, and with high interest rates, this debt can quickly become unmanageable.
  • Job loss: Senior citizens may have a more challenging time finding a new job if they have been laid off or let go. A loss of income can make it difficult to keep up with bills and debt payments.

If you’re a senior citizen and experiencing financial hardship for any reason, it’s important to consult with a bankruptcy attorney as soon as possible.

The Pros and Cons of Filing for Bankruptcy as a Senior

Deciding to file for bankruptcy is never an easy decision to make, and it can be more difficult for older Americans. Before deciding to file for bankruptcy, senior citizens should weigh the pros and cons and how these apply to their unique financial situations.

Why Seniors Should Consider Filing for Bankruptcy

  • Debt relief: Filing for bankruptcy can wipe out most unsecured debt, such as credit card debt and medical bills.
  • Protection from creditors: Once you file for bankruptcy, creditors are not allowed to contact you or try to collect on your debts.
  • A fresh start: Bankruptcy can provide a fresh start and allow senior citizens to regain control of their finances.

Why Some Seniors Should Consider Avoiding Bankruptcy

  • Negative impact on credit score: Filing for bankruptcy will have a negative impact on your credit score, which can make it more difficult to obtain credit in the future.
  • Loss of assets: Depending on the type of bankruptcy you file, you may be required to sell some of your assets to pay off creditors. This can mean having fewer resources to live on and pass down to your loved ones when you pass away.
  • Legal fees: Filing for bankruptcy can be expensive, and legal fees can add up quickly. While bankruptcy is generally a viable option for many, this aspect may not make it the best possible option.

Is Bankruptcy Right for You?

If you're a senior citizen struggling with debt, bankruptcy may be a viable option. However, it's important to consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney to determine if it's the right choice for you. An attorney can also help guide you through the bankruptcy process and ensure that you understand your rights and obligations.

Buchalter & Pelphrey Attorneys At Law is here to help you through every step of the bankruptcy process. Our experienced attorneys can provide the guidance and support you need to understand the options available to you as you seek debt relief.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation.