canstockphoto28074279Divorce is challenging for a number of reasons. The legal part of the divorce can be stressful since it concentrate mainly on how the assets and debts will be split up. Divorce isn’t just emotionally draining. It can also get quite expensive.

 

There are ways you can avoid stress by learning the basics of debt and divorce:

 

1. Get familiar with the laws in your state. Since the rules vary from state to state, find out who will be responsible for paying off the debts. In some states, the name on the debt is the one that’s required for making the payments while both parties are reliable in other places. Regardless of whose name is on the account, you may still be responsible.

Speak with a divorce attorney to learn more about the laws in your state.

 

2. Joint credit cards are equivalent to joint debt. If both of your names are on the credit card, you’re also responsible for paying off the debt. If your spouse charged $10,000 without your knowledge, the credit card company will potentially hold you equally responsible for the debt.

After the separation, all credit card purchases and cash advances are the sole responsibility of the person that made the transactions. The time period of the separation occur depends on the laws in your state.

 

3. Cancel all joint accounts during the divorce proceedings. You don’t want to be held responsible for your soon to be ex spouse taking out a large cash advance or mounting credit card debt. Make sure that you’ll have enough money in your account and check your credit rating before cancelling the credit card account.

 

4. The court ruling may not protect you from creditors. If your name is on the account, the court’s decision doesn’t matter to the creditors. If there’s a credit card, mortgage, car loan or any other debt, you are still liable. This can negatively affect your credit if your ex fail to pay it off.

 

You can also face a lawsuit for the debt. If this describes your situation, you have the option to sue your ex for failing to honor the agreement. This can be very stressful for both parties. If you feel that you’re not responsible for paying the debt, allow the courts make a decision on the matter.

 

5. Pay off outstanding debts. Paying off all of your debts or converting joint accounts to individual accounts will make the divorce process easier and less stressful. If this isn’t possible, keep a close watch on your joint accounts and get a copy of the documentation of your finances.

 

6. Consider the mortgage payments. The banks unlikely will remove either of your names from the mortgage.  The more people that’s responsible for the mortgage payments, the happier it will make the lender. It’s probably best for you to sell the home and split the proceeds. If either one of you decide to keep the home, you have the option to refinance the home to remove the other party from the loan.

This is usually the largest debt that’s created by married couples and is also chaotic during divorce proceedings. The parent with physical custody of the children will typically get possession of the home.

Refinancing is a possible solution if one of you have sufficient income and a good credit rating and there is enough equity in the home.

Selling the property is the best choice to pay off the mortgage in most cases. This will allow both parties to be free of debt and rebuild their life.

 

7. Think twice about signing a quitclaim deed.  It allows one party to give up all claims of the property. Many people make the mistake of thinking they are no longer responsible for making the payments if they sign it. You will lose any equity and use of the property and still be responsible for the mortgage payments.

Divorce can be emotionally and financially draining. The way debts are handled during the divorce process depends on the laws in your state. A good divorce attorney can help you to make sure that your finances are intact and make it easier to transition to the single life without emptying your bank account.

 

canstockphoto8526950Whether you are young or old, there is a good chance that you had to visit the doctor or have been hospitalized for an illness at least once in your lifetime. Once the bill arrived, you asked yourself why is the bill so high and how are you going to pay it. You may be tempted to ignore the bill, but doing this can affect your credit. If you haven’t signed up for Obamacare or your insurance was cancelled for whatever reason, there are ways for you to consolidate your medical expenses.

Here are 7 Simple Ways to Pay Off Your Medical Bills.

 

1. When you first notice that you are going to have problems paying your medical debt, you should get on the phone right away. Contact the financial department of the medical facility and let them know your situation. Ask if there is a way that you can make monthly payments until it’s paid in full. If you already have a household budget in place, this will give you an idea on the amount that can go towards the medical expenses and when it will be paid off.

 

2. Check again with your insurance company if you were denied. You should review your policy to be sure what is covered and at what percentage. You have the right to appeal the decision while investigating other means of assistance. There may have been something that was overlooked or other mishaps that have taken place.

 

3. Most Doctor’s Offices are approachable for debt payments. You can avoid this altogether, by finding out their payment options before your visit. Many offer a credit program to their patients. Make sure you are clear on the amount you will have to pay if you’re qualified. However, if you are denied, then ask about other payment options.

4. Use your credit cards. This should be used with caution. Many credit card companies offer a no interest rate for the first twelve months. You can pay on the Medical Bills and use the first year to work out a plan for getting the credit card paid off before the interest rate is added.

5. Apply for a loan. A loan will help you do a couple of things: consolidate your debt and set up reasonable payments for you. Visit your bank or credit union and ask about their loan program. Credit Unions usually have lower interest rates than credit card companies and medical debt programs. You can decide which day of the month that your payment is due and also negotiate how long it will take to pay back the loan.

6. Seek Government Assistance. It is available to help repay medical debts. If you are unable to work based on a disability, apply for SSI at the Social Security Administration in your local area. If you are qualified, then any outstanding debts will possibly get repaid by Medicaid.

7. Contact a debt consolidation agency. This is a good choice if you have a busy schedule or unable do this on your own. Make sure that you speak with a medical debt counselor before signing any documents. You will be given a list of resources that’s based on your financial situation that can be helpful and it won’t cost you anything to participate.

Paying off your outstanding Medical Bills isn’t difficult. If you use one or more of these methods, this will avoid getting annoying phone calls from the bill collectors and keep your credit in good standing

Will Borrowing Money Put You In Danger?

canstockphoto9530353Whether you are taking a trip to the mall or looking to buy a new home, the first thing that may come to mind is to use your credit card or obtain a loan. Many consumers are choosing to put things on credit simply because it’s a convenient way to shop. Borrowing Money has its  benefits as well as risk. The number one question you may want to ask yourself is will borrowing money put you in danger of getting in debt?

 

Excessive borrowing is becoming an epidemic in our society and it seems to be no big deal to a lot of people. It’s easy to just go in our wallet and reach for the credit card or what some people affectionate refer to it as “the plastic.” Some people get a high when charging things on their credit cards that they can’t afford.

 

If you fall into this category you are falling into a trap of getting yourself head above water in debt. For example, if you are purchasing a new sweater and you are using your credit card that has a 20% interest rate this will get quite expensive over time. Many people make the mistake of looking at the original price tag when making their purchases. When they receive the bill they are surprised how much they are paying for that item.

Many people also fall into the credit card trap by making the minimum payments on their bill each month. The credit card companies allow their customers to pay a small amount of money to keep them  paying on the debt for a long time. That’s how the card companies are making  big profits.

Imagine how much you will be paying if you made most or all of your purchases on credit. Even if you pay your credit card bill on time every month you are losing out on the possibility of building your own wealth. The amount of money you are paying in interest charges can be making you money if you stop being a borrower and become an investor. It could be put to better use in an interest bearing account instead of going to the credit card company.

 

What about getting a loan to buy a new home?

There is nothing wrong with taking out a mortgage to buy a home. This is a necessity for most people. It’s actually an investment because in most cases a home will gain value over time. However, you have to be careful not to give into the temptation of buying a bigger house than you can afford. You should ensure that your mortgage payments is well within your family’s budget.

 

Are you borrowing money that you can’t afford?

If you have a habit of making purchases on credit, you will be putting yourself in a hole financially. Take a good hard look at your buying and borrowing habits. Pay the maximum amount of money that you can on your monthly bill so you can pay off your debts as quickly as possible. Once you pay it off, put it to good use by investing in your children’s college fund and for your retirement to build a bright future for your family a lot sooner than you think.

 

canstockphoto7397155When you think of receiving your credit card statement, the thought of it may make you cringe. It is always a good idea to check it thoroughly to avoid incurring more costs than you realize. The credit card statement can be confusing at first, but once you know what to look for,  this can save you some money and even help to protect yourself against fraud. Here are some things you should check for on your monthly statement.

First, you should look for the purchases or new charges section for your most recent transactions. You should keep your charge receipts for all of your purchases so that you can compare it to the charges that’s listed on your credit card statement. You should also look carefully for any unauthorized charges and double billing for a purchase. You’ll want to catch these unwanted charges on your credit card since you will be given a certain amount of time to dispute it.

If you continue to make payments on your credit card for unauthorized charges that you weren’t aware of,  you may still be responsible for those charges. Most credit card companies will give you 60 days to resolve the matter or they will argue that you accepted the charges.

If you notice any transactions for a purchase that you didn’t make , call your credit card company right away to report the fraudulent charge. Most will file a report and you won’t be responsible for paying for the charge. They will usually reverse 100 percent of the amount in most cases.

The next thing you should look for on your statement are the interest rate that are applied to various charges. For example, if you took out a cash advance, you are more likely to pay a higher interest rate than you would on a credit card purchase for an item at the grocery store.

Paying close attention to the interest rate on your statement will also guarantee that you will make the best choice on how to use your credit card wisely. It is obvious that you don’t want to use services that come at a higher interest rate too often. This is throwing money down the drain. Paying attention to how much you are paying for that service is an excellent way to keep yourself in check.

Another section you should check for is your previous balance. This is the outstanding balance that’s owed from the previous month.  Always double-check that balance to ensure that the charges are accurate.

The section outlining your credits and payments is very important. You will want to ensure that all of the payments were applied properly to your outstanding balance and all charge reversals or returns were accurately credited to your account.

You will also notice the term “APR” on your statement. This stands for annual percentage rate which is the interest that’s applied to any outstanding balance at the end of the month. The lower the rate, the less you will have to pay in interest.

You should be aware that the credit card companies can change the APR even if the APR rate is fixed. The bank is required to provide at least forty-five days notice of any changes to the terms of your agreement such as an interest rate increase.

Some credit cards also apply a finance charge in addition to your APR. This only applies if you are carrying a balance in most cases. If you don’t pay off the balance at the end of the month, you will likely have to pay a finance charge on top of your interest fees.

Keeping a close watch on your credit card statement on a regular basis will protect you against fraud and save you money. If you follow these steps, you will avoid getting in debt and put thousands of dollars in your savings.

 

 

 

canstockphoto16801980It seems that everyone is trying to separate consumers from their heard earned money nowadays. I’m not only talking about businesses. You should also be aware of scammers. One way they attempt to steal from people are through credit card scams.

 

There are  advantages to using credit cards. It is an easy way to make purchases and to build your credit. You also have the option to use debit cards. Banks issue debit cards with Visa and Mastercard logos so that you can easily make purchases from your checkings account whether you are shopping at your local stores or online. Although, this is  convenient you are responsible for keeping your credit cards safe.

Scammers are always looking for new ways to gain access to your accounts. They will use every trick in the book to steal your information without your knowledge, which will sometimes create problems when it comes time for you to clear the situation with the banks or credit card companies.

 

Try these Four Important Steps to Avoid Falling Victim to Credit Card Theft

 

Make Sure Your Credit Cards are in a Safe Place

Know where your credit cards are at all times. Whenever you make a purchase never place your credit card on the counter. If the clerk need to swipe your card, make sure the she give it back to you. Shopping during the holidays when it’s hectic poses the biggest threat when it comes to keeping your credit card safe.

You should always be aware of your surroundings. Pick pocketers can steal your wallet from your back pocket or an unzipped purse without your knowledge. You may think that you misplaced your credit cards until you either receive a telephone call from the credit card company about unusual transactions or when you receive your next statement.

 

Don’t Give Out Your Personal Information to a Stranger

Never give out your credit card number over the telephone. If someone ever contact you about a bill payment, ask for the website address or a place where you can pay locally. Better yet, you can simply tell them that the check is in the mail. Scammers will always find ways for people to give out their personal information by disguising themselves as a legitimate company.

 

Fill Out The Credit Card Slips Completely

If you ever used your credit cards at a restaurant, did you just sign the receipt? This is not recommended since someone else can easily fill it in and you will be charged more money. If you are leaving a tip on the table, you can take extra measures by writing the actual amount of the bill on the “total amount” line. Make sure to keep a copy to compare it to your next credit card statement.

 

Examine Your Credit Card Carefully When It’s Returned

When you give your credit card to a waitress or cashier, examine your card when you get it back. A few seconds is all it takes for them to do a bait and switch on your card. Be sure that it is your credit card and not a fake.

 

Keeping your credit cards in a safe place, filling out your credit cards slips completely, examining your credit cards when it’s returned and never giving your personal information to complete strangers are Four Important Steps to Avoid Falling Victim to Credit Card Theft. Credit card scammers are everywhere looking for their next victim. Use these methods to your advantage to protect your credit cards and keep your finances safe to avoid the headaches down the road.