Grandparents Extending Financial Help to Kids, Grandkids Often Face Atlanta Bankruptcy
More senior citizens are opting to lend a helping hand to family members struggling financially, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Unfortunately, grandparents' goodwill gestures sometimes come at the cost of their own financial stability.
As our Atlanta bankruptcy attorneys reported earlier this month, people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s - or those most likely to have purchased homes during the housing bubble or taken out expensive education loans - have borne the brunt of the recession.
Between 2005 and 2010, people between 35 and 44 years old have seen their median household net worth fall nearly 60 percent. Meanwhile, they must contend with rising costs, credit card debt, and home equity loans.
This leaves little money to help their teen and young-adult children - who are often unable to find entry-level jobs - pay for college or a first car.
Grandma and Grandpa, on the other hand, may have income to spare. Today's grandparents are typically baby boomers between the ages of 45 and 64, according to a recent MetLife study. Most are still working - and contrary to younger generations, those over 55 years old have actually seen their income rise during the recession.
As a result, seniors often feel obligated to pitch in financially.
What many now-healthy grandparents fail to consider, however, is how much money they'll need to cover health- and care-related expenses further down the road.
Grandparents who help pay off debt for their grandchildren and children may become a new cause of debt if they later become incapacitated.
By continually coming to the rescue of their grandkids, seniors also prevent young adults from learning important budgeting skills. While assisting with college or providing a used car may be fine, paying down a grandchild's debt rewards poor choices, according to the WSJ article.
Unfortunately, good intentions - coupled with rising medical costs - are leading many older Americans to file for Atlanta bankruptcy. People over 55 now account for 22 percent of all bankruptcy filings.
For folks who've paid their bills on time and pinched pennies for years, struggling with debt can be stressful and embarrassing. The good news is that filing for bankruptcy in Atlanta has the ability to relieve debt and provide a fresh start, no matter what your age.
If you've stretched your finances thin helping others, bankruptcy may be able to help you. To speak with an Atlanta bankruptcy attorney, call the DebtStoppers Bankruptcy Law Firm at 800-440-7235. Call today for a free one-on-one debt analysis.
More Blog Entries:
Grandparents Bearing Checkbooks, by Veronica Dagher, The Wall Street Journal