If you’re thinking about declaring bankruptcy in Nashville, there are a few key things that you must think about before you do it. Take the time to consider each of the following points carefully so that you can decide what the best option is in your case. At the same time, be sure to look into all of the legal steps to take to declare bankruptcy.

First, don’t be frivolous in your use of bankruptcy. It can be helpful, but it also has a large impact on your credit score. Additionally, you can only use it so often, so you want to make sure you really need to do it before declaring.

Next, remember that you’re not going to lose all of the assets that you own. The government doesn’t want to put you on the street. While you could lose some assets, they’ll try to find a fair way to give you a fresh start, and many things are exempt.

You do have to pay to file bankruptcy. There are legal fees and fees due to file your paperwork with the court. This may be a small investment to wipe out a lot of debt, but you do need to come up with some money up front, or you won’t be able to use it.

Finally, the credit hit might not be as bad as you think. One of the big negatives is that your credit score drops, but you have to consider your situation. If you’re already defaulting on your payments, continuing to do so might be worse than declaring bankruptcy, or your score could already be so low that the drop won’t matter too much.

Source: Credit Cards, “14 key factors when considering bankruptcy,” Dana Dratch, accessed June 29, 2015