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Personal bankruptcy not a stigma for one mayoral hopeful

Buffeted by the ill winds of divorce and alimony, paying a portion of his son's college expenses and daughter's medical bills, one city's mayoral candidate's finances finally fell apart. So much so that he had to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Now, running for mayor in a midwestern city, he has displayed resolve and candor by speaking frankly about his personal bankruptcy.

He is currently opposed by two major candidates for the November election. When asked about his bankruptcy, the man did not hesitate to speak openly. He divulged that he had filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 13 and was paying $455 to his creditors every month under his bankruptcy plan.

During these times of economic misery, a percentage of voters across the country may well empathize with this particular candidate. Some may even find that it is admirable for a politician to be upfront about his personal "dirty laundry," particularly when it is more common to hear political spins skirting past the topic.

For many voters, this man's situation may actually be something that they can relate to during these difficult times. Personal bankruptcy offers the filer a fresh start in life and a new lease on financial affairs. Creditors are precluded from harassing or suing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy filer because both sides are protected under a negotiated and mutually-accepted payment plan.

The ins and outs of bankruptcy are tricky and can seem convoluted. Additionally, an individual who hasn't sought legal assistance can still be taken advantage of and threatened by creditors harassing phone calls and letters.

An individual enduring a similar nightmare as this mayoral candidate may find consulting with a bankruptcy attorney the first step towards creating a plan to rise from their financial nightmare and gain a much needed relief.

Source: The Total Bankruptcy, "Ohio Mayoral Candidate in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy," Brenna Working, Aug. 23, 2011

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