Virtually no amount of financial planning or careful saving can completely address the burden of an unexpected financial crisis. For some people in Ohio, this is a sudden illness or injury that brings on considerable amounts of medical debt. For others, it is the accumulation of minor financial stumbling blocks. As consumers struggle to pay back bills while also meeting their daily needs, credit card debt continues to climb, making Chapter 7 bankruptcy a viable option for some people.

A recent study found that the total amount of credit card debt held by United States’ consumers is close to hitting the $1 trillion mark. The year 2015 alone added $71 billion to that number, and the average household credit card debt is currently estimated to be about $5,700. The situation is even more dire for individuals and families who must stretch their paychecks to live month-to-month. According to the data, these consumers average closer to $16,000 in debt.

One expert on the matter believes that, unlike credit card use that was prevalent prior to the 2008 recession, most consumers are taking on credit card debt as a way to supplement personal gaps in income. He also commented that most consumers who have at least one credit card that has been maxed out have likely experienced a crisis in their life. Often, that crisis is linked to a sudden job loss.

It is not that Ohio consumers are oblivious to the implications of hefty credit card debt, as there is sufficient evidence that proves most individuals understand just how dangerous it can be. Despite the economy’s recovery, consumers continue to struggle with even the most basic financial needs as they simultaneously attempt to chip away at mountains of debt. This is often unsustainable, but debtors are not without options. Simply beginning the process of Chapter 7 bankruptcy can halt all collection attempts and set consumers on a path towards a more secure financial future.

Source: alaska-native-news.com, “US Credit Card Debt Nears $1 Trillion“, Bernard Shusman, April 8, 2016