No one feels good about being in debt, yet most of us will encounter a serious financial problem at least once in our lives. In many cases, it is a medical event, a divorce, a job loss, or another issue beyond our control that leads to a situation where we simply cannot pay all our bills, despite our best efforts.
If you and your family are overwhelmed by debt, you may be stressed out or depressed. You may be experiencing harassment from creditors. You may be wondering whether bankruptcy could be used to improve your situation.
Let Our Waco Bankruptcy Law Attorneys Help Your Family
At Simer & Tetens, in Waco, Texas, we are a small, locally based, family-operated firm that helps other families solve financial problems through personal bankruptcy and by other means. We welcome the opportunity to sit down with you, review your debt situation and answer your questions about:
- Medical debt from an illness, injury or surgery
- Credit card debt that has become unaffordable
- Payday loans and personal loans
- The differences between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy
- Preventing foreclosure through bankruptcy
- Repossession of a vehicle
- Student loans and IRS debt
- How to make bankruptcy cost-effective
- Issues affecting military service members, veterans and contractors
Bankruptcy is not right for everyone. Waco bankruptcy lawyer Samantha Kehl can help you determine if it is right for you.
Cases of Bankruptcy
Bankruptcy comes in many forms. We assist people like you in a variety of circumstances.
Medical Debt and Bankruptcy
An unanticipated medical expense can push you over the edge financially and lead you to consider bankruptcy. Even if you have health insurance, the cost of some procedures, treatments, tests and medications can fall on you, which can make it hard to cover your essential bills like housing, food and transportation. Once your savings run out, it can be hard to keep all your creditors at bay and keep your family afloat.
Medical debt is one of the leading causes of financial crisis for Americans. In many cases, bankruptcy can be used effectively to discharge medical debt of all kinds. Our firm can help you explore whether bankruptcy is right for you.
If you are considering bankruptcy as a means of dealing with unaffordable medical debt from doctors, hospitals or other service providers, contact Simer & Tetens. Our firm may be able to help you:
- Stop the harassment of bill collectors through bankruptcy’s automatic stay, which forces creditors to stop contacting you
- Discharge your medical debt and other types of debt through Chapter 7 bankruptcy
- Address any mortgage problems you might be having
IRS Debt and Bankruptcy
If you owe money to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), you may be worried about having your wages garnished or suffering other serious consequences. You may already be overwhelmed with IRS collections efforts, which can be aggressive.
The IRS, as a powerful government agency, is unlike other creditors in its ability to collect money from taxpayers. If you are in debt because of unpaid federal taxes, you will have to deal with the IRS sooner than later — and you will probably not be able to settle your debt for pennies on the dollar. Our firm can help you address your tax debt in a way that reduces your stress and, perhaps, restores your sanity.
If you are searching for an IRS tax debt lawyer in Waco, Texas, Simer & Tetens can assist you in developing and implementing a plan for satisfying the IRS and helping you move forward with your life. We can evaluate your situation and possibly help you do one of the following:
- Determine if bankruptcy will provide meaningful protection from tax debt or other debts
- Set up an IRS payment plan you can afford through a Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
- Stop IRS wage garnishment
Every debt situation is different. Our firm has helped many Texas families get out from under tax debt and other financial challenges.
Student Loans and Bankruptcy
Student loans have become a major financial problem for millions of Americans of all ages, especially recent graduates.
Faced with the prospect of marginal job opportunities, disappointing salaries, and high monthly payments, many young people and older adults are struggling to keep up with their student loan obligations. Some people wonder if bankruptcy can help them address what feels like a crisis.
The bad news is that student loans are generally not dischargeable in bankruptcy, like credit cards and medical bills are.
Layoffs, Job Loss, and Bankruptcy
There is almost nothing more stressful than losing your job when your family really needs the income. If you were laid off, “downsized” or terminated, you may be struggling to make ends meet. You may have accumulated unwanted debt in your efforts to keep your family afloat in the wake of employment circumstances that are beyond your control.
You may be experiencing harassment from collection agents who could care less about what you have been through.
Bankruptcy can be an excellent solution to some debt problems. If a job loss or other income loss has led you to this site, our firm can help you understand whether bankruptcy protection may be applicable to your situation.
Credit Card Debt and Bankruptcy
Credit card debt can come from many places. Very often it is a symptom of a job loss, a divorce, a medical problem or another change of circumstances you didn’t plan on. Many people use credit cards to make ends meet during a difficult time, but the debt can quickly reach a level where even the minimum payments are not affordable and where balance transfers are no longer possible.
Nobody wants to owe money to credit card companies, and nobody wants to be tortured with threatening phone calls. The harassment of credit card collection agents leads many people to explore bankruptcy — and to leverage bankruptcy as a powerful way to get out from under credit card debt.
If you are searching for a Waco attorney who can help you get relief from credit card debt, contact Simer & Tetens. Our firm may be able to assist you by:
- Helping you discharge your credit card debt through Chapter 7 bankruptcy
- Helping you prioritize your vital housing, food and transportation expenses over unsecured debts
- Helping you understand the pros and cons of a bankruptcy filing
Payday Loans and Bankruptcy
Payday lenders are known for taking advantage of people who are struggling. With their astronomical interest rates, access to unsuspecting borrowers’ bank accounts, and ruthless collection agents, payday loan companies can seem very powerful when you are in debt to them.
If you feel trapped in a payday loan, there is hope. The truth is this: Payday loans are unsecured debts that can be easily discharged in Chapter 7 bankruptcy. That means that once you file bankruptcy, the payday lender can no longer contact you, and you no longer have to make payments. (It is important to note that a payday lender cannot lawfully take your property, threaten to take your property or threaten to arrest you.)
It is also important to know that you can stop payday lenders from taking your money simply by changing banks — even if a collector tells you otherwise, harasses you with phone calls or threatens you. Payday collectors are known for intimidating borrowers and using scare tactics to get money.
If you are searching for a lawyer in Waco, Texas, who can help you escape from a payday loan and deal with other forms of debt, please contact Simer & Tetens. We will be happy to evaluate your situation and help you:
- Get a plan for your payday loan
- Understand if bankruptcy may be in your best interest
- Understand how much the bankruptcy process may cost you
- Address your credit card debt, medical bills, auto loans, mortgage and other obligations
- Understand your rights and responsibilities as a military service member
Our firm is a family business that cares about other families. We strive to be compassionate, practical and affordable. We welcome the opportunity to serve you.
Bankruptcy Involving Military Service Members
The Waco, Texas, area is home to thousands of military service members and veterans, as well as many civilian contractors who work for the military. Like other people, military personnel can run into serious financial difficulties. Unfortunately, many creditors and their collection agents do not recognize the service or sacrifices made by men and women in uniform.
If you feel overwhelmed with debt, our firm can help you find a solution, which may or may not include a bankruptcy filing. We understand the unique difficulties faced by military personnel, veterans and their families.
At Simer & Tetens, we work with military service members and veterans who are searching for debt relief. We can help you get answers if you are struggling under the weight of:
- Wage garnishment, which some creditors impose on military personnel based in Texas
- Fast cash loans and payday loans
- Credit card debt
- Mortgage problems, including foreclosure
- A vehicle loan that is in default
- Student loans, tax debts and other stressful issues
Bankruptcy For Deployed Soldiers
Sometimes people ask us about bankruptcy for deployed soldiers: Can I file bankruptcy if I or my spouse is deployed? Will bankruptcy help me get out of debt — and if so, how exactly? Could bankruptcy help me save my home? Am I even eligible to file bankruptcy as an enlisted person?
Our firm can answer these questions and help you understand your rights as a service member or family member of a service member. Depending on your circumstances, you may be able to obtain bankruptcy protection even if you or your spouse is deployed.
Foreclosure Prevention and Loan Modification
There is almost nothing worse than the fear of losing your home. The threat of foreclosure can drive a person to a place of unbearable stress and desperation, especially when foreclosure letters are coming in the mail — or worse, when a sheriff’s sale has been scheduled.
Though the source of the mortgage problem may be a job loss, a divorce, medical bills, an unaffordable home loan or another issue, the impact of foreclosure can be huge.
If you are afraid of losing your home to foreclosure, our firm can help you explore your options for resolving this serious problem. The good news is that foreclosure is a process, not a one-time event.
In some cases, foreclosure can be prevented when steps are taken early enough. For some homeowners, Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is an essential part of a foreclosure prevention strategy.
How to Choose a Bankruptcy Attorney
If you are considering filing bankruptcy, one of the most important decisions you will make is which attorney to represent you in your bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is a confusing process and you need someone on your side making sure you get the best result possible. Therefore, you should give careful consideration to which bankruptcy attorney you hire. Here are a few tips.
- Hire an attorney who you can communicate with and is easy to approach. You will have questions during the bankruptcy process. You don’t want an attorney who is inaccessible or unable to just talk to you and explain things in terms you understand. If your bankruptcy attorney doesn’t take your phone calls, how can you remain informed?
- Choose an experienced bankruptcy lawyer who specializes in bankruptcy cases. Bankruptcy law is a unique area of the law and you don’t want an attorney who dabbles in it when the economy is slow as a way to pick up business.
- Retain a bankruptcy attorney who has rates you can afford or a payment plan you can live with. Bankruptcy can be expensive if you hire an attorney who has unreasonable fees.
- Ask around for recommendations. By choosing an attorney who is recommended by others, you will feel more confident as you begin the bankruptcy process.
- Use a lawyer that comes out to meet you and has experienced staff working for them. Your bankruptcy attorney is the one who will be in court with you. You want to meet them up front. If the attorney is too busy to meet you, will they be there for you later?
Contact Our Firm to Speak with a Bankruptcy Lawyer
Our firm concentrates on providing debt relief to families in the Waco, Texas, area. Even if you live outside of the city of Waco your case must be filed in Waco if you live in one of the following counties: Bell, Bosque, Coryell, Falls, Freestone, Hamilton, Hill, Leon, Limestone, McLennan, Milam, Robertson and Somervell.
We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.