While national figures on foreclosure showed a 26 percent decline in 2013, the number of foreclosure filings in New Jersey soared by 44 percent. By the end of the year, 1.1 percent of homes in the state were in foreclosure.
Medical expenses are still the number one reason many households in New Jersey are forced into overwhelming debt. The hope of some that the Affordable Care Act would curb the rise of the cost of healthcare has been discouraged by glitches on the health care exchange site and low enrollment figures. In fact, by Dec. 28 just over 105,000 New Jersey residents had enrolled through the exchange site, despite predictions that at least 900,000 are eligible.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a very important law pertaining to bankruptcy and debt. Without the law, debt collectors could employ a number of very dirty and malicious tactics to force in-debt parties to pay. They could act as cops or lawyers on the phone, intimidating a borrower; they would constantly call to try and wear a borrower down; or they would harass the borrower's co-workers or family in an attempt to break their spirit.
Bankruptcy filings have been on the decline for the past few years, but financial experts say that the pattern could reverse this year as the economy continues making slow improvements. Yes, you read that right: An improved economy can actually result in more people filing for bankruptcy.
Being in over your head with credit card debt can feel embarrassing and overwhelming, which is why many people stay in a state of denial. They may push financial worries out of their minds while continuing to spend money they don't have. These individuals may even find themselves lying to friends or loved ones because they don't want to face the reality of their financial situation.
A couple of months ago, we wrote about the decreasing number of bankruptcy filings in the U.S. On the surface, it sounds like a great development. However tempting it is to jump to this conclusion though, it may not be the case. For example, just because fewer people are filing for bankruptcy does not mean they aren't racking up debt in areas that can't be addressed through bankruptcy. More specifically, student loan debt -- which is extremely difficult to discharge through bankruptcy -- is a massive problem for many people in the U.S. right now.