The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that as of July 1, 2013, there were roughly 54 million Hispanics living in the United States, representing approximately 17% of the total population. This makes people of Hispanic origin the nation’s largest ethnic or race minority. Hispanic people represent the fastest-growing immigrant group in the United States. The rich cultural diversity of Hispanic people can include immigrants from Mexico, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and Latin America.
As an immigrant and the daughter of immigrant parents, I understand first-hand the issues facing the Hispanic, or Latino community. Although many in the United States face financial pressures, Hispanics may face additional obstacles when faced with the possibility of “bancarrota” (bankruptcy in Spanish). In the Latino community, bancarrota, is not considered a viable form of recovering from financial catastrophe, rather, it’s considered a form of failing to provide for your family. In most Latin American countries, if you can’t pay your bills or if you fall behind on your financial obligations, you simply speak with the creditors and give your word of honor of when and how you will pay back your financial obligations, regardless of how long that may take. Furthermore, the concept of bankruptcy laws in Latin America is foreign to consumers because they are geared more towards assisting failing businesses.
Fortunately, we live in a country where you can continue to pursue the American Dream even when you trip along the way when you are hit with a financial catastrophe. For example, when a family member falls ill, the medical bills can become astronomical, and that family member can no longer work and provide for his or her family which can lead to a financial catastrophe. Filing bankruptcy can be a solution which can not only help with the mounting medical debt, but can also assist with recovering peace of mind.
Understanding bankruptcy laws is difficult and complex but when a client begins to understand why it’s always a good idea to seek legal professional help when facing financial difficulties, then the concept of considering “bancarrota” is no longer foreign or shameful. If you are a member of the Hispanic community and are having a difficult time paying your bills, please contact our most convenient office for a free, confidential consultation. At many of our locations – Hablamos Español.
When seeking legal assistance for other legal matters, the Alabama State Bar is a good place to start. Simply by visiting the bar’s website, the public can access brochures that have been written in both English and Spanish. Simply, copy and paste the following link https://www.alabar.org/for-the-public/brochures onto your browser and click on the images of each brochure to download the individual brochure file or go to www.alabar.org and click under the tab “For the Public” and click on the Brochures link located on the menu. Each brochure can be printed directly from the bar’s website.