In the midst of significant social and economic changes, many Americans are struggling to make ends meet. After a job loss and other complications, it’s not surprising that many are falling behind on certain types of debt payments, particularly credit card and auto debt. Some consumers in Louisiana are finding it more difficult than ever to pay down debt and get ahead.

In the month of April, the number of credit card accounts that are entering financial hardship increased by more than 3%. This is about the same for the number of auto loan accounts that missed a payment in the last month. Around 5% of all mortgages are also in hardship. All of these statistics point to a growing number of families that are struggling to pay for basic monthly expenses.

There are some programs that offer relief to overwhelmed consumers. Depending on the type of account it is, a lender may offer some sort of relief or forbearance. The government also recently provided some Americans with financial relief, but that may not be enough to help some get out of their financial struggles completely. Ultimately, some Louisiana consumers may have to consider other steps to deal with their debt in an effective manner.

Consumer bankruptcy is an option for those who are past due on certain types of debt payments. This process offers an applicant the opportunity to discharge or pay back debt, depending on the type of bankruptcy. It can provide relief to those who have no other way to manage their debt and regain their financial footing.