If you find yourself in trouble financially, you may immediately think about filing for bankruptcy. However, that is not always the answer.
You may have other options that can help you to avoid that dramatic step. One thing you may consider is negotiating with your lenders to see if you can get a lower payment, a settlement for pay off or some other agreement that will help you avoid financial trouble.
Suggestions for negotiations
You should always try to enter negotiations before you are in trouble and missing payments. If you go into the talks in a strong place, it makes it much easier to get the lender on your side and willing to discuss options. You may need to be persistent, though. Do not take no for an answer. You may need to keep asking until you reach someone who can make a deal with you. Be honest about your situation and be clear that you will not be able to continue making payments as you are right now. Above all, stay calm and be professional. Losing your temper will not help you at all.
Options to consider
When approaching your lenders, consider what you want to happen. You may be able to ask for a lower interest rate which will lead to lower monthly payments. You might want to set up an alternative payment plan or ask for debt forgiveness if you have a special situation that caused financial hardship. It may also be possible to consolidate debts if you have multiple ones with one lender, or you can propose a one-time reduced payment to pay off a debt.
Being willing to talk to your lenders when you are having financial difficulties can save you a lot of headaches and trouble. Give it a chance before you immediately jump to thinking about bankruptcy.