When people use bankruptcy as a way to restructure their debt, most people know that the bankruptcy can have a lasting effect. All across the country, including in Memphis, when financial times get tough, people file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. This can be a good decision, but those who do file for bankruptcy should remember that they may be required to report the filings under certain circumstances.
Recently, it was discovered that a city council woman in Patterson, Florida, failed to disclose that she had filed for bankruptcy in the past on her application to become a council member. The councilwoman says that she did not fail to disclose the bankruptcy in an effort to deceive voters, but believed that the case was old enough that it did not have to be disclosed. The councilwoman also stated that the past bankruptcy steamed from an abusive relationship with her husband.
The councilwoman filed for both Chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcies due to medical bills. The couple also lost their house. Several of the opponents of the councilwoman have argued that the councilwoman should resign because she kept information from the voters.
While bankruptcy can be of help for many people to get out of difficult situations, it can also stay with people for many years. Some jobs can ask about a person's past to see if they have filed for bankruptcy. Government positions often ask if a candidate has filed for bankruptcy. Lying on a governmental application can be considered perjury. It is important for a person who files for bankruptcy to understand the long-term implications.
Filing for bankruptcy can be a difficult process, with long-term repercussions. However, doing so can be the best option in a bad situation.
Source: Patterson Interrogator, "Opponents say Lustgarten still shouldn't have concealed bankruptcies ," Nick Rappley, Jan. 10, 2013