Bankruptcy Help for Senior Citizens

Bankruptcy can be a devastating event emotionally as well as financially. The feeling that one cannot meet one’s obligations can often lead to depression and a sensation of worthlessness. This can be particularly hard on senior citizens, who may feel helpless in the face of mounting bills, since with their working lives over, the situation may seem hopeless. It is more difficult for senior citizens to get jobs even when they are physically able, and in many cases they are indeed not able to sit or stand for many hours each day, or do other tasks routinely required of working Americans.

Thankfully, the situation for senior citizens deep in debt is not as hopeless as it may appear at first. The AARP (American Association for Retired Persons) has been at the forefront of efforts to organize and deliver credit counseling or debt consolidation services specifically designed for senior citizens. These provide important alternatives to bankruptcy because they can allow the elderly American to reorganize debt so that it becomes possible to keep up with the payments and thereby retain one’s good name in the financial world.

Senior Citizens Beware


Although the AARP has done its best for seniors in this country, other businesses and firms, not to mention outright criminals, make it a practice to take advantage of senior citizens. Sometimes such individuals or businesses go even further and actually cheat the elderly. Therefore, it’s vital that seniors interested in credit counseling or debt consolidation seek out firms that have sterling reputations.

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The Better Business Bureau is an excellent place to start. Check a firm’s record. If the BBB has no record at all of the firm, stay clear. If there is a record, investigate it carefully. Be especially vigilant about checking for consumer complaints. What is the complaint rate, and what do the complaints allege exactly? Another feature of the BBB website to consult is the bureau’s own rating of the business. Look for one that is rated with an A.

Credit Counseling or Debt Consolidation?

Credit counseling refers to services to assist seniors to understand their debt level and help them learn how to manage it. Reputable firms will offer services such as negotiating with credit card companies to lower interest rates, which will in turn lower minimum monthly payments and make the debt load more manageable. No company can completely erase your debt. Many claim to be able to do this for a fee. Such companies will pocket the fee and make your financial situation worse, not better.

Debt consolidation services are appropriate for senior citizens who need more extensive assistance. These companies will collect all or most of your loans together into one package and arrange a new loan for the whole amount, but at a lower interest rate. Existing creditors will be paid off and afterwards, the borrower will have just a single payment to make each month. This increases the likelihood of the borrower being able to make regular, on time payments.

5 thoughts on “Bankruptcy Help for Senior Citizens

  1. DeeDee Sanborn

    I can not beleave you would just leave our elderly just swing with the breeze I came to help my mom She wants to file bankruptcy but you are telling her to pay them (her bills ) off rather than file and get rid of them., My Mom has 509 comming in and she should pay off bills that when she got them she had a better income , She had a heart attack and in no way can she pay them off,Lets see should she go with out food or maybe her meds or not pay a house payment I dont understand what you want ?

  2. santos

    I’m a Senior, citizenth, dessable, retired, i was had a heart attack,
    I have two credit card 3 years or more stope use and make payment, i need go in Bankrupcy, i not have money for make payment,… montlly payment is $ 500.- Thanks. I need help in spanish asson if possible.-

  3. Carmine N. Rosado Espada

    I am a senior citizen about to turn 64 next month, I have done a reverse mortgage in my home and I would love to stay in my home. I would like to file bankruptcy because of credit cards, dept store and car lease dept. I had my husband income before but now he is not here and his retirement was taken away from me so it just my social security retirement. I am trying to obtain employment but right now I have anything. I need help of an attorney that would be free or charge a small fee my income is $776.00 monthly plus food stamps which $189.00. Is there any help for someone like myself. Thank you

  4. Carmine N. Rosado Espada

    I need help filing bankruptcy but my income is $776.00 monthly plus food stamp $189.00. I have a reverse mortgage on my home and would love to stay here. Is there anyone that cane help for a small fee. Thank you

  5. Lucy

    I need help my husband passed away several months ago and now I only get one social security check! I’m on food stamps and I need to file bankruptcy with all medical bills after his death’ I might be losing my home as well! I need help in how do I get senior help in paying for service to file bankruptcy! Thank you!

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