4 Steps to Help Ease Your Financial Burdens After a Job Loss

In tough economic times, people lose their jobs and struggle financially to make ends meet. If this has happened to you, there are things you can do that might help you support your family. As you start looking for a new job, here are four things you may want to consider doing to help you get by.

File for Unemployment

Unemployment is a program that offers income to people when they lose their jobs. While the income it provides is generally less than the amount you earned from your job, it can still help. According to the United States Department of Labor, unemployment benefits are granted to people that lose their jobs for no fault of their own.

It generally takes a few weeks for the benefits to kick in, and you may be required to reapply for your benefits every week. Keep in mind that unemployment benefits cannot last forever; they are simply designed to help you get by until you find another job.

File For Bankruptcy

A second thing you should do is to thoroughly analyze your current financial situation. Make a list of

  • Any income sources you currently have
  • The monthly expenses you have, including your mortgage, insurance, and utilities
  • Your debts, such as credit card bills or unpaid hospital bills
  • Any assets you have

As you analyze your current financial situation, you may realize that you will not be able to pay many of your bills. To help with this, you may want to consider filing for bankruptcy. Not only will this help you eliminate current debts you have, but it may also give you time to figure out how you will pay your normal monthly expenses.

A bankruptcy attorney will help you determine whether you qualify for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The type you use will determine how much debt you must repay.

Get Your Child Support Modified

If you are currently paying child support, you will still have this obligation even if you do not have a job. The only recourse you have is to file for a child support modification. This is something that allows you to have the court recalculate your child support payments, and it is something that is commonly requested when a person's income drastically changes.

You may be able to get your support obligations dropped to a lower amount, and this would make it easier for you to make these payments.

Seek Help From Non-Profit Organizations

Finally, you could seek help from non-profit organizations during this time of hardship. If you are part of a church, ask your church if they have a benevolence fund, and find out what it would take to qualify for help. Churches often help people that are in hard situations, and they may be willing to help in the following ways:

  • Pay for your utility bills
  • Offer free child care while you search for jobs
  • Give you free groceries to feed your family

In addition to seeking help from a church, there are other organizations that may help you pay your bills during this time. These organizations will generally ask you to fill out applications for help, and they will provide you with help if you are approved.

You may also want to look for a support group to join. This is a great way to talk with other people that are in similar situations, and it may open the door for other resources you can use for help and assistance.

If you are struggling because of a job loss, there are steps you can take. If you decide to file for bankruptcy, hire an attorney for help, and don't forget to utilize other resources in your area.