Many Pennsylvania residents have their wages garnished each year due to creditors obtaining judgments against them. People can choose to pay off the debt in full or to keep paying the debt through garnishment if they are able to do so. For many people, this is not an affordable option, however.
While many Pennsylvania residents understand that financial pressures can become burdensome, there are certain restrictions in filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy as a way to obtain a fresh financial start. Income and household expenses are evaluated to determine whether Chapter 7 is appropriate or whether it would be an abuse of the financial system. Means testing is an important element of filing for bankruptcy, and forms must be filled out accurately and submitted with the petition.
Pennsylvania residents might be interested to learn about some debt management strategies that can be used for long-term financial health. After gaining extra funds that could be used to pay off debts, many households would be eager to pay down their mortgage. According to some financial experts, however, a mortgage normally falls into the category of 'good debts" and should be paid off last.
When someone files a Chapter 7 petition in Pennsylvania, a trustee will be appointed to administer the case. The trustee will liquidate the nonexempt assets that belonged to the debtor. If the debtor does not have any nonexempt assets, the trustee will likely file a no asset report with the court. In that event, no liquidation and distribution to unsecured creditors will take place.
Pennsylvania residents who are ineligible for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy due to their income or who want to save their home from foreclosure may be eligible to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 13 reorganizes debt and gives individual debtors a longer time frame to pay back what they owe. This process generally takes between three and five years, and in many cases, any remaining debt can be discharged.
According to the National Institutes of Health, it costs $216.6 billion per year to treat cancer in the United States. On average, each patient racks up over $10,000 of debt with costs higher for those treated earlier in life. Cancer treatment costs were also higher for those with advanced forms of cancer. Statistics indicate that 62 percent of cancer survivors go into medical debt to pay for their treatment.