Considering Bankruptcy? 4 Things You Should Never Do Before Filing

If you're considering bankruptcy as a way to get out of debt, there are some things you need to know before you file. Bankruptcy is often the only option available once the debt has become unsurmountable. Unfortunately, some actions that you take prior to filing for bankruptcy can come back to haunt you later. Here are just a few of the things you should never do before you file for bankruptcy protection.

Take On New Debt

If you know that bankruptcy is a possibility, you should avoid taking on new debt. This is especially important if you haven't made any payments on the items you purchased. Once you file for bankruptcy protection, your creditors may view that as fraud and fight for repayment.

Give Away Personal Property

If you have personal property that you don't want to lose in a bankruptcy, don't give it to friends or family. Giving property away to family and friends prior to bankruptcy is one of the worst things you can do. You might think that you're just protecting your property but it's actually illegal. If the courts find out about the property you've given away, it can derail your bankruptcy case.

Dip Into Your Retirement

If you have a retirement fund, don't dip into it to repay debts. Your retirement fund is exempt from bankruptcy seizures, which means that creditors cannot seize those funds to pay down debt. However, once you dip into those funds, creditors can go after the accounts during the bankruptcy proceedings. Protect your future by leaving your retirement funds intact.

Move Out Of Your Home

If you own a home, don't move out before filing for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy doesn't always mean that you have to lose your home. In fact, there are laws to help you keep your home even if you file for bankruptcy. However, if you move out of your home, those laws will no longer protect you. Before you move out, speak to an attorney who specializes in bankruptcy laws. They may be able to help you keep your home and protect it from foreclosure.

Being in debt can be stressful. If you've reached a point where bankruptcy is the only option, you owe it to yourself to speak to a bankruptcy attorney. Bankruptcy can give you the fresh start you need to obtain financial freedom. To avoid potential problems, be sure to avoid doing anything that might harm your chances of having your debts forgiven.