As one might expect, the stigma of bankruptcy often can stop a consumer from making the decision to file bankruptcy. They feel like a failure, or that they are reneging on an obligation. When I meet my clients for the first time, they often say to me, I have never not a paid a bill until … It is understandable that they feel this way. However, I always point out to them that they are not alone, and that the bankruptcy law is there to help them. It is not an assessment on their financial responsibility or anything that should embarrass them, but rather, it is a form of debt relief that not only they, but many people, including some of the most influential and famous business people in the history of our great nation have used to rebuild their financial future. For many consumers, they have lost a job, been injured in some way, been divorced, or suffered some other setback that has required them to live on credit cards, or miss a few mortgage or car payments. Bankruptcy may be the only way to eliminate enough debt that you can sleep at night and in some cases save your home.

I often point out that if Donald Trump or Henry Ford did not file bankruptcy, the world may not have known many great accomplishments, as both of these financial moguls were involved in multiple bankruptcy filings. I also point out that Walt Disney and one of America’s greatest presidents, Abraham Lincoln filed bankruptcy. I even point out that people who are considered some of the most intelligent in our history such as Samuel Clemens (“Mark Twain”) and Thomas Jefferson filed bankruptcy in order to obtain the debt relief they needed to move forward with their careers.

At the end of the day, it is important that you realize, you’re not alone and frankly even in some very good and famous company, if you and your attorney determine that bankruptcy is in your best interest.