The only good reason you should consider bankruptcy is if you're drowning in debt and have no other way out. Bankruptcy destroys your credit for ten years and remains in public records for 20 years. Besides the public embarrassment that bankruptcy causes, it can also cause you to lose assets and be turned down when you apply for credit, for a job, or to rent an apartment. Additionally, as of October 2005, changes in the law made it much more difficult to file for bankruptcy. Under the new law, chances are that you will be obligated to repay a portion of your debt. Why take the risk of suffering these consequences when there may be a less painful way to get out of debt?
Victor Chevalier works with the Texas and California debt-settlement organization Debt Free League.