Automatic bill pay has become very popular, especially for those who want the convenience of having their monthly ongoing bills automatically deducted from their checking account. But for debtors considering bankruptcy automatic bill payments are not a good idea. Here's why:
- You often have no idea what you are spending each month. If you're considering bankruptcy and use automatic bill pay, most likely you don't know what you're paying out each month to creditors. Since the money comes out of your account without you seeing it, you don't think about it. But when you consider bankruptcy it is time to get an honest look at your money and that includes even small payments like health club memberships and subscriptions.
- You have no control over when you pay creditors. If you're considering bankruptcy, most likely you are behind on many important bills. Well, if you have automatic bill pay enabled for small bills, you need to realize that those small payments can add up. Three or four payments of $30 or $50 quickly add up to hundreds of dollars and could impact your ability to pay your mortgage or car payment.
- Once you actually need to stop the automatic bill pay it can be a challenging and lengthy process. For a debtor who is considering bankruptcy, this could be a problem. What if you need access to that money to pay for an emergency or some other urgent expense? Stopping automatic bill payments can take at least 30 days and some unscrupulous companies continue deducting from your account even after you have requested they stop. If you are in financial trouble and considering bankruptcy, do yourself a favor and stop all automatic bill pay deductions from your bank account immediately.