Can Bankruptcy Help Debtors Achieve the American Dream?
Could the American Dream really be just a dream? For the first time in generations, today’s Americans won’t be better off than their parents, a status once considered a marker of success in the United States.
In a recent poll by CNN Money, nearly 60 percent of respondents said they feel the American Dream is out of reach. Young adults aged 18 to 34 are most likely to be disillusioned, with 63 percent saying it’s impossible to achieve.
It makes sense, considering that college-age consumers and recent grads were hit hardest during the Great Recession. Student loan debt and credit card bills coupled with low wages or even the inability to land a job have left many twenty-somethings financially stunted and – in some cases, still living with mom and dad.
While technically the average American earns more than her parents, it’s in part because today’s families typically have two earners, increasing overall household income. However, only half of people have more wealth than their parents. Meanwhile, savings rates of young households are abysmally low.
For the most part, Americans are getting by – but we’re just not getting ahead.
However, some experts argue that the American Dream isn’t dead; it’s just changed.
Instead of a home with a white picket fence or a brand-new car, achieving the American Dream today means achieving freedom from what’s holding the majority of us back: debt.
Most Americans don’t think twice about using credit to make everyday purchases or taking out payday loans to bridge the gap between paychecks. We accept the high interest rates, late payment fees and credit damage because it’s become the norm. But it doesn’t have to be.
Eliminating burdensome debt can improve nearly every aspect of your financial life by freeing up more money for bills and retirement savings, getting rid of the possibility of fees and penalties, and helping you establish positive credit. But what if your debts have grown beyond your ability for repayment? Chapter 7 bankruptcy can wipe out most forms of unsecured debt in a matter of months, giving you a clean slate.
Debt has the power to hold you – and your life – hostage. Bankruptcy can help you break free. If you’d like to learn more about what bankruptcy may be able to do for you and your family, contact DebtStoppers today for a free one-on-one debt evaluation with one of our experienced bankruptcy lawyers.
The American Dream Is Out of Reach, by Tami Luhby, CNN Money