What happens if you find yourself facing a fine for a traffic violation but your income isn’t even enough to cover your regular monthly financial obligations? If you don’t pay it off in time, the government will take away your license and put you in an even more difficult situation. So what are your options?
Many people may not realize how beneficial filing for bankruptcy can be in these situations. However, having an understanding of what it means to file bankruptcy and how it could affect your specific situation could mean the difference between losing your license and getting back on the road. So what factors should you consider before filing for bankruptcy help? Here are a few suggestions:
- What’s the Charge?
Finding out how serious the fines you are facing are is the first step in deciding how filing for bankruptcy will affect your case. Depending on the offense you are being charged with, you may want to discharge the ticket completely rather than just paying it back considering that some can affect your record in the future. Even though bankruptcies will be able to help pay the fine off through liquidation or a payment plan, some filings will not be able to completely eradicate the charge.
- Which type of bankruptcy?
While Chapter 7 bankruptcies are the most common form with around 728,833 Chapter 7 filings out of the 1,071,932 total bankruptcies just in 2013, it may not always be the best option for traffic violations. Minor civil penalties, such as speeding or parking tickets, usually don’t have serious long-lasting repercussions, so paying them off may be enough of a solution.
However, as stated earlier, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can’t discharge these fines while a Chapter 13 bankruptcy can. But they can’t be discharged by either filing if they are considered criminal offenses.
- What’s your financial state?
Depending on your income, different types of bankruptcy may cater better to your specific financial situation. If you’re positive there is no way you could pay off the traffic tickets with just your income, Chapter 7 bankruptcy help will liquidate your assets over six months to pay off other debts allowing you to use your money to pay the fines.
A Chapter 13 bankruptcy, on the other hand, sets out a payment plan that can allow you to pay off the fines in pieces over the course of three to five years. As an extra bonus, the government will be unable to take your license for the entirety of the bankruptcy.
Before determining if bankruptcy helps your specific circumstances, understanding the different types of bankruptcy and how they can affect your violations is essential to staying on your feet. A speeding ticket shouldn’t be holding you back.