Bankruptcy and COVID-19
Reduction in hours, furloughed, or jobless – many Hoosiers are struggling. The global pandemic not only impacted our healthcare system, it brought our local and national economy to its knees. Hardworking individuals and families are suffering financially as state and federal assistance are ending. For example, the $600 unemployment benefits, student loan forbearance, and other extensions from private companies like Comcast’s free internet, have all expired. Although programs are ending, the coronavirus continues to spread while people seek work.
According to Market Watch, about 20 million Americans are received unemployment benefits after 14 million jobs were lost in March followed by 10 million lost jobs in April. Our country hasn’t seen unemployment rates like this since the Great Depression. Industries that were especially hard-hit include retail, restaurants, bars, and tourism.
After the nation slowly reopened, the job market started to recover. However, new job listings are sprouting up at a slow pace. It is ill-fated to think about the abundance of job openings before the pandemic hit US soil, which were reaching record highs. Hopefully we find our way back, but experts say it could take years.
COVID-19 is predicted to cause dozens of new bankruptcy cases in Indiana. Families are finding it difficult to pay their bills, debts, and mortgages in this shaky economic climate. The COVID-19 pandemic comes at a time when consumer debt is higher than ever. For this reason, bankruptcy might be the only option for borrowers with large debts. Americans owe trillions in mortgages, credit cards, car loans. Our collective debt is astronomical – now millions won’t have the means to pay.
Not only are people making less money, medical bills are sure to contribute to a wave of new bankruptcies. If a worker catches the coronavirus, they will be out of work for at least 2 weeks. Being unable to pay hefty hospital bills is a common cause of bankruptcy in the first place. Hoosiers who are sick might have difficulty securing new employment. Thus, unpaid medical bills.
Even though times are bleak, there is help available. Many banks, utility companies, and credit cards will work with you. Just contact them individually. At Whitten & Whitten, we care about our community. We’ve compiled a list of resources:
- Click HERE for a website that has resources and information for Indiana businesses.
- Click HERE to take a quiz to see what benefits you may be eligible to receive.
- Click HERE for resources about unemployment.
- Click HERE for current information about COVID-19.
- Click HERE for assistance finding food, paying bills, and more.
If you are considering bankruptcy, call your lawyers at Whitten & Whitten. We can help you through the process of discharging your debts during these unprecedented times. Call 219-763-6012 today for a free consultation.