I’m starting this blog with a little joke that found it’s way to me in my inbox. And it goes like this…
A businessman was in a great deal of trouble. His business was failing, he had put everything he had into the business, he owed everybody – it was so bad he was even contemplating suicide. As a last resort, he went to a pastor and poured our his story of tears and woe.
When he had finished, the pastor said, “Here’s what I want you to do: put a beach chair and your Bible in your car and drive down to the beach. Take the beach chair and the Bible to the water’s edge, sit down in the beach chair and put the Bible in your lap. Open the Bible; the wind will rifle the pages, but finally the open Bible will come to rest on a page. Look down at the page and read the first thing you see. That will be your answer; that will tell you what to do.”
A year later, the businessman went back to the pastor and brought his wife and children with him. The man was in a new custom-tailored suit, his wife a mink coat, the children shining. The businessman pulled an envelope stuffed with money out of his pocket and gave it to the pastor as a donation in thanks for his advice.
The pastor recognized the benefactor and was curious. “You did as I suggested?” he asked. – “Absolutely,” replied the businessman.
“You went to the beach?” – “Absolutely.”
“You sat in a beach chair with the Bible in your lap?” – “Absolutely.”
“You let the pages rifle until they stopped?” – “Absolutely.”
“And what were the first words you saw?” – The business man replied…. “Chapter 11”. 🙂
For those who are not familiar with the US Bankruptcy Code, Chapter 11 is the USA’s version of Canada’s Assignment in Bankruptcy.
Am I advocating Bankruptcy? Absolutely not! Bankruptcy should always be the last resort. But it can be the only option to remain sane and move on with your life, when all other options are outside of your grasp. In my 16 years in the industry I have seem people with unexpected illnesses that has thrown their financial plan out the window, single people living in their cars because of an addiction, families torn apart by divorce or other personal issues that has left a pile of debt and little hope for regaining control. In each of these cases, the individual or the family were able to start again, learn from their mistakes, and rebuild their lives. A chance they may not have had otherwise. There will always be those who abuse the system and give a bad rap to those who truly need the relief.
As always, it is imperitive that you get expert, impartial advise to help you make the best decision possible. It may seem odd, but Bankruptcy Trustee’s are one of the few professionals who not only can provide advice on all options, can refer you to a reputable firm for services outside of those they can provide, provide the advice you need for free and are heavily mandated by law and a professional association that is in place to ensure the integrity of and public trust and confidence in the system.