Wisdom From “Bankruptcy in Indiana” Christmases Past – Part Two

December 23, 2012 10:57 pm Published by

‘Tis the season, and for me, in my twenty-sixth year offering Indiana bankruptcy help, it’s a time for both looking back and for looking ahead. This week, I’ve been looking back at the messages I felt, at this time of year, were most important to convey to Bankruptcy in Indiana readers.

Just as in 2008, when job layoffs were the big matter of concern, in the 2009 holiday season questions were constantly being asked of the Anderson, Bloomington, Indianapolis, and Columbus bankruptcy lawyers having to do with bankruptcy and jobs. One reader question that I shared was this:  “Can I be refused a public school teaching job if I’ve filed bankruptcy?”

The answer to that reader’s question had several parts.  The law forbids an employer from terminating an existing employee solely because of a bankruptcy case, I assured her. Similarly, prospective employers cannot discriminate against you solely because of a bankruptcy.  Realistically, though, I cautioned, if you were not hired, I it may be difficult to prove that it was specifically because they learned you filed personal bankruptcy in Indiana.  On the other hand, I added, after such a deep recession, employers know all too well that job layoffs and medical costs can create difficult financial situations. I advised her to be open about the bankruptcy and show what steps she was taking to rebuild her finances.

By the time the holiday season had rolled around in 2010, after a year of helping stop foreclosures, offering payday loan debt help and student loan debt help, I was focused on helping my clients handle credit cards responsibly, particularly during and after the holidays.

Along with the holiday joy, I observed, I and my colleagues in the Zuckerberg bankruptcy law offices were seeing a lot of risk-taking.  Some of the risk, of course, had to do with overspending, but there was also the risk of becoming victim of a scam. A third kind of risk I wrote about actually was the risk of receiving a gift card which you could not redeem because the issuing company had filed bankruptcy!

My Richmond, Indiana bankruptcy lawyer colleague urges all clients to keep receipts of all the gift cards they buy for other people, while keeping their own level of debt under control.

Keeping debt under control…wouldn't that be nice? That’s what I wish for you…
 

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This post was written by Mark Zuckerberg

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