People don’t often talk about their personal debt. You may be completely unaware of a close friend’s or family member’s financial situation. With all the options out there for debt help, including chapter 7 bankruptcy to eliminate debt and chapter 11 bankruptcy to protect your assets, talking about it can be beneficial. But before you speak to a Los Angeles bankruptcy attorney, let a friend or loved one know they have your support.
So, how do you bring up the subject? Here are five ways to encourage someone to find help with paying down their debt.
Offer Helpful, Non-Judgmental Assistance
Your tone says it all. Don’t sound judgmental and as if you have the perfect plan. Asking if someone is concerned about money is okay. You could also express concern about their spending habits, but don’t persist if they seem uncomfortable. Also, try discussing your own experience with debt and offering details on how you handled the situation, so they have examples to draw from.
When you spend time together, don’t pressure the person into spending money. Even suggesting going out to dinner or to a movie can be distracting. However, it is still possible to socialize. Why not go for a walk or a bike ride, watch a movie at home, or cook dinner? It can be just as fun and, after all, adding to their financial burden will only distance them.
Help Them Figure Things Out
For someone in debt, working out the details can be challenging. It helps to list one’s debts, including creditors, balances, minimum monthly payments, and interest rates for credit cards, and what’s owned on loans. Determine what they should pay each month to eliminate their balances within three years. By offering help, you can enable the person more clearly see their goals.
Find a Strategy
Does one card have a higher interest rate than another, or a lower balance? That can help choose a target debt to pay off first. If this is practical, suggest paying off as much as possible to the target debt, until it hits zero, and continuing to target new debts as balances are paid off.
Allow Them to Find a Solution
Chances are, your friend is resourceful, but is just in a difficult situation. You might feel obligated to help if you have the financial ability, but that is only putting them in debt to you. Ultimately, allow the person to manage their own money and decide on the best solution for them.
There are various ways to pay off debt. In some situations, bankruptcy may be the best one. Large debt can have many undesirable consequences, but our Los Angeles bankruptcy attorneys & Orange County bankruptcy attorneys can help with the process to help get you or your loved ones back on financial track. Recommend Oaktree Law, which provides bankruptcy services throughout Southern California and finds the best solution for each client’s personal circumstances. Call 562-219-2979 or request a free evaluation today.