If your debt is mounting and nothing seems to bring relief, it may be time to consider a bankruptcy filing. As one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll ever make, don’t jump into the process until you’re sure of what you’re doing.

Here are four questions to answer before filing for bankruptcy:

  • Is Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy the best option? There are pros and cons to both, so you need to compare the finer details before making your final decision.
  • Have you considered other options? Before filing for bankruptcy, you’ll want to look into things such as debt settlement, debt consolidation and credit counseling.
  • What will you get in the long run? You want to make sure your bankruptcy filing will actually help your situation. For instance, with Chapter 7, you can eliminate many forms of debt, such as credit card debt.
  • Are you okay with the impact on your life? With a bankruptcy filing staying on your credit report for seven to 10 years, you need to understand there is more to this than meets the eye. It will impact your personal life and finances for many years to come.

After you address these questions and others, you’ll know where things stand in regard to filing for bankruptcy. It’s at that point that you should feel more confident making a decision on what comes next.

If you’re ready to file for bankruptcy, turn your attention to the process and the steps you can take to protect your legal rights throughout. The way you prepare has a lot to do with how things turn out in the end.