No matter what has led to it, divorce is a painful process. The legal side of it – mainly the splitting of, until recently, common assets – comes in addition to the emotional distress, and augments it. And when financial aspects such as bank accounts and credit cards must also be taken into account, sad complications may arise. Normally, expenses incurred – and credit taken – during the marriage should be the equal responsibility of both partners. Unfortunately, things are not always as they should be, especially since it’s difficult to prove that those expenditures were made by the two people together, and not just by one of them.
Before you start shaking your head in disbelief, you should know that, according to experts’ estimations, divorces account for a significant part of the recent 20 per cent rise in the number of bankruptcies. This is at least partly due to the fact that filing their petition in bankruptcy is one option that many people choose in this situation. When faced with the prospect of paying off a large debt, many people realize that it might be too much for their halved financial power. However, while it may be the easiest way out, you should never overlook the consequences: this unfavourable piece of information will show on your credit report for ten years…
There is another way – a better way, as many will agree: consulting a professional. Many people turn to one of the several non-profit organizations specializing in credit resolution. They charge a small fee, normally in the neighbourhood of $14 per month, in exchange for which they will run an analysis of your credit card debt, living expenses, and income, after which they will suggest the most suitable type of repayment. They will then contact your creditors and negotiate new terms with them. Since those creditors are ultimately happier with your money than with your bankruptcy petition, chances are that your financial burden will be made lighter.
Your credit report, however, will specify that you have sought counselling – credit card companies include this information in it. However, not everyone will view that as a negative aspect, and it certainly is less of a problem than bankruptcy, which might be a strong impediment to making certain purchases.
While you are following the counselling programme, you will not be allowed to keep a credit card. But this is just one of those changes that can help you take your mind off the divorce and focus on a fresh beginning.