Most people are afraid of bankruptcy. They believe it is for dead-beats; they believe it is shameful or an admission of failure; they believe it will destroy their existing credit rating and that they’ll never get credit again; they believe they will lose their home. None of these myths are true.

The overwhelming majority of people who file for bankruptcy are decent, hard-working folks who never intended to be in financial distress. They have made valiant efforts to repay their debt. But, usually for reasons beyond their control, the debt has snow-balled and is no longer manageable. The most common ways people find themselves in this situation are:    READ MORE



(It May Be More Than You Think)

Let’s face it: marital discord is agony. You wouldn’t separate if you didn’t have to. For most couples, the decision to separate means they’ve come to the end of their rope emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually. What couples often don’t realize, though, is the strain separation will put on them financially.

Let’s start with some basics. The median income for a family of four in Pennsylvania is around $75,000, so the couple nets around $5,000 per month. We’ll assume that one spouse nets $3,200 per month and the other nets $1,800. From the combined incomes, the couple pays one mortgage, plus monthly bills for gas, electric, phones, cable, internet, garbage, water and sewage, etc. The family of four shares food and sundries and therefore purchases many of these items in bulk at a discounted price. For example, a 12-pack of toilet paper costs less per roll than a 4-pack of the same brand. (If the parties’ incomes are higher, or lower, the discussion still holds true.)   READ MORE


*Susan practices law primarily in the areas of domestic relations and consumer debt. Her law office is designated as a debt relief agency that helps people file for relief under the Bankruptcy Code.