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Government Furlough
How to Survive The Government Furlough

by John G. Merna

Part Two

Earlier this week I discussed some simple steps to surviving the Government Furlough that so many here in Hampton Roads and in Richmond will be facing. Here are some honest questions and answers about where you may find yourself in the coming months.

Question:  Do I borrow money to survive the government furlough?

Maybe.  It depends of the terms. Family – no interest and easy repayment? Great.  Withdraw from retirement?  Pay penalties and taxes – not great. Borrow from Thrift Savings or 401(k) – no interest, but will have the monthly repayment taken out of your check which could squeeze you later.  Credit cards? Digging a deeper whole.  Payday loans? The whole turns into a grave and you might as well come see me about a bankruptcy.

Question:  How bad off am I now?

If you are living paycheck to paycheck now with your credit lines maxed out – bankruptcy maybe.  If you have been barely able to pay your credit card debt even before the furlough – bankruptcy maybe.  If you were already behind when the government furlough occurred – bankruptcy definitely.

Question:  How bad is bankruptcy?

The answer is “not bad at all” but don’t tell anyone.  Huh, you ask? Think of it this way.  What is your credit score worth? Ten thousand dollars? Twenty Thousand Dollars or more?  The average person with $10,000 to $15,000 of debt will pay three to four times that in interest over years of struggling and working.  Bankruptcy – you are debt free the next day and rebuilding your credit to the point of buying a house as quickly as two years later.  You save thousands of dollars and get out of the credit trap you buried yourself in. Less stress, more available money, more options.  Not bad at all.

Question: So why don’t more people file bankruptcy?

Well, a lot do – about 1.4 million a year.  The stigma is the primary reason I would say that more people do not file bankruptcy each year.  We have been trained to protect our credit.  Why?  So we can borrow more and spend more, so the companies that  lend to us can basically reap a portion of our wages for the rest of our working life.  Doesn’t that sound like a brilliant get rich plan?  Unfortunately, we are a capitalist / consumerist society and that means the worker bees generate the honey for the queen bees to enjoy.  Wouldn’t it be nice if we really could enjoy our own honey?

So, back to the government! Why is the government furloughing people? So it can reduce expenses and afford to pay its bills.  But wait a minute, the government furloughs and you may have to consider bankruptcy?

I’ve got a better solution.  Let the government go into bankruptcy and you keep your income and pay your bills.  Did they think about that?

Just don’t think you are in this alone.  We are here to help.

P.S. How many Congressmen are getting furloughed?  You know the answer to that.




 The Merna Law Group, Attorneys At Law, P.C. Didn’t have to worry about anything!5 Stars! “Just keep providing the type of service you do. You business values are based off reliability and service. Today’s Law Offices just don’t offer that kind of experience. Didn’t have to worry about anything!!! Just being able to go on with my normal life and know that all my issues are well taken care of is a relief in itself.” Reviewed by A.P. of Virginia Beach on Mar 4 . 
 The Merna Law Group, Attorneys At Law, P.C. …kind and friendly from the start!5 Stars! “Everyone there was kind and friendly from the start and helped us with everything in a timely manner. They were never rude no matter how much we called or asked questions.” Reviewed by B.P. of Virginia Beach on Feb 20 . 
 The Merna Law Group, Attorneys At Law, P.C. …overall experience was outstanding!5 Stars! “My husband and I were very happy with The Merna Law Firm. They are well organized, time manageable, and friendly. I was even able to bring my children with me if I needed to. In court, they stayed right there beside us and answered all questions we had. Our overall experience was outstanding and I am glad we were represented by the Merna Law Group.” Reviewed by A.M. of Suffolk on Mar 5 . 
 The Merna Law Group, Attorneys At Law, P.C. …debt free!5 Stars! “A friendly staff and outstanding attorney who helped me through a difficult time in my life. Thanks to everyone at the Merna Law Group who helped me move on to and new chapter in my life debt free!” Reviewed by M.F. of Norfolk on Mar 8 . 
 The Merna Law Group, Attorneys At Law, P.C. …very helpful and friendly!5 Stars! “Everyone at the office was very helpful and friendly. The attorney answered all of our questions and helped us through the entire process. He was also very helpful answering concerns that we had after the process was completed/over. Highly recommended!” Reviewed by M.E. of Virginia Beach on Mar 11 .