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Faced with debt, many former prisoners end up in bankruptcy

On Behalf of | Oct 13, 2016 | Chapter 7

Serving a term in prison in Tennessee affects a person’s life in many different ways. One problem that many people find upon their release is that they are saddled with thousands of dollars in debt and no clear way to pay it off. This, in turn, then puts those people more at risk for having to file for bankruptcy.

One of the major sources of debt for former prisoners is legal fees, reports Slate. They may also be facing expenses for treatment they received while behind bars. Plus, even if the person was represented by a public defender, there are often still costs incurred. This makes it extremely difficult for many people to start fresh when their newfound freedom comes along with debt they cannot pay.

In addition to their prison-related debts, some people may have had existing debts before they were convicted. This means their credit scores have likely suffered. Without a solid credit score, former prisoners may have a hard time landing a job, finding a place to live and being able to afford a car, NerdWallet points out. However, there are a few ways that people can work to improve their credit score upon their release from prison.

Making on-time payments and paying at least the minimum amounts due each month will slowly help a person’s credit score improve over time. Routine monitoring of his or her credit report may also be a good idea. While it can be difficult to stick to a budget every month, writing one out and accounting for every debt will ensure that the challenge is met head on.


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