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Lafayette Bankruptcy Law Blog

Pursuing advice on debt relief options instead of avoiding mail

Countless individuals in Louisiana and across the country have experienced periods of financial struggle throughout the course of life. In some cases, monetary issues may result in temporary setbacks that can be overcome in time. However, in some cases they can be long-term issues that require a more permanent solution, potentially leaving a person to wonder about available options for debt relief.

Whether financial issues result from sudden and unexpected expenses, or simply accrue over a long period, debt can be a crushing weight on a person. Those who experience prolonged periods of financial issues often suffer a reduced quality of life throughout this time. In addition, the stress of receiving bill after bill in the mail can be emotionally challenging, and having stacks of unopened mail to look at every day could only add to one's problems.

Seafood chain Joe's Crab Shack files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

When Louisiana business owners find their companies in more debt than their profits can repay, they must begin looking at all available options to rectify the problem. One potential solution for many owners may be filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The owner of the seafood restaurant chain Joe's Crab Shack recently filed for this form of bankruptcy.

Ignite Restaurant Inc., which owns the chain, stated that it has been considering selling the business in light of dwindling sales. However, owners believed that potential buyers would not purchase the company in that state. Since filing for bankruptcy, Ignite now plans to sell Joe's Crab Shack for at least $50 million to a private equity firm.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy could help those in severe credit card debt

Credit card debt has become a serious problem for many Louisiana residents. While some people are able to deal with it through stricter budgets, others must tackle their financial obligations in other ways. Chapter 7 bankruptcy could be a solution for some individuals who are facing overwhelming financial problems.

A recent study performed by a personal finance website estimated that the average American family owes about $8,377. It also reports that, overall, Americans owe more than $1 trillion in credit card debt. This indicates that the average credit card debt per household has risen six percent within the past year. 

Chapter 13 bankruptcy could help those facing collections

Though the amounts and the types of debts may be different, many Louisiana residents will likely owe some form of financial obligation at some point in their lives. Whether the result of medical bills or because of overspending, owing substantial amounts of money can become overwhelming when not dealt with appropriately. Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be one option for helping people overcome excessive debt.

One credit report website recently analyzed consumers' accounts to determine the average amount of debt their customers face. Reportedly, those whose medical bills had gone into collections owed an average of $3,670. Those who had credit card accounts in collections owed an average of $1,831. Having a substantial amount of bills in collections can also cause credit scores to drop.

5 signs that your spending habits are problematic

There was no single, unexpected event that threw you into debt. You weren't in a car accident that left you with $300,000 in medical bills. You didn't lose your job. You're 35 years old, married with two kids, and you're employed full time.

Instead, debt built up slowly. It didn't feel dire at first, but now you're in over your head. You're unsure how you got there, but you're interested in any potential options to get yourself out.

Louisiana residents should be wary of possible debt relief scams

Louisiana residents who face overwhelming debt may be willing to try just about anything to get rid of it. There are several debt relief options available for most people. However, those in debt should be wary of scams that advertise debt relief, as they may actually increase one's debt. One such scam has been halted by federal court.

In a lawsuit that was recently filed, 11 companies were accused of taking part in defrauding individuals who were seeking assistance with their debt problems. The companies promised customers that they would lower interest rates, make payments for customers and wipe out existing bills. However, these companies did not perform these tasks and instead took more money from their customers.

Retailers can use Chapter 11 to regain financial stability

The many aspects of running a business can be challenging for a great deal of business owners. Those in the retail industry have especially suffered from serious debt recently. When Louisiana proprietors find that their debt outweighs their profits, they must begin looking for solutions to deal with their financial problems. Over the course of this year, multiple retailers have discovered a solution through filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

For many retailers, the competition from online stores has decreased sales for their brick and mortar stores. This, paired with rising interest rates, has left many companies with significant debt. At least 12 American retailers have chosen to file for bankruptcy since the beginning of this year. While some of these businesses have since closed, others have taken advantage of the benefits of Chapter 11 and kept their doors open.

Many hospitals have found financial relief through Chapter 11

Often, when people hear of organizations filing for bankruptcy, they imagine retailers, restaurants or other similar businesses. However, other types of organizations can also benefit from filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy to help manage the debts that they face. A number of healthcare organizations have recently made the decision to file over the course of this year.

There can be many reasons a hospital or other healthcare organization may choose to file for bankruptcy, such as declining patient numbers or because of the changing role of health economics. Since Jan. 1, 2017, at least 13 hospitals have filed for bankruptcy. Louisiana Heart Hospital is among those that filed, as well as three hospitals in the neighboring state of Texas.

Debt relief could still be possible for those without savings

Financial debt has become commonplace in the lives of many Louisiana residents. Credit cards and how they are used often play a significant role in a person's finances and can easily lead to monetary problems. Luckily, those facing these types of financial issues often have several options for debt relief available to them.

One common cause of debt is lack of savings. People may acquire debt by overspending each month or they may find themselves in dire financial situations due to medical bills or other unplanned budgeting emergencies. To combat issues like these, creating an emergency savings account and continually adding to it can help prevent debt in the future.

Louisiana millennials may benefit from Chapter 7 bankruptcy

A study conducted by the Urban Institute showed that the millennial generation is just as likely, if not more so, to suffer from serious medical debt. This can be an overwhelming situation for many Louisiana residents. Fortunately, there could be several options available to combat the debt, such as filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

The study determined that even though younger people are typically more healthy than older people, 21.1 percent of those ages 18 to 24 and 27.8 percent of those ages 25 to 24 faced unpaid medical debt. One reason younger generations may struggle with medical debt is because they are less likely to have health insurance. Another common cause is simply lack of savings, as younger generations have had less time to build up their savings in order to pay large debts.


Richoux Law Firm, L.L.C.
110 E. Kaliste Saloom Road
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Lafayette, LA 70508

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Phone: 337-205-7049
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