Debt Collection Laws: How to Prioritize Bills in Foreclosure

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If there is a time when you need to be familiar with the debt collection laws in Florida, it’s when your home goes into foreclosure. I mention in the video that the bank may pay your property taxes and likely even your home insurance, and you may not have to make those payments. But there are a lot of things you can’t just stop doing – far more than not paying HOA fees.

How should you prioritize your bills when you’re dealing with foreclosure? Is there a hierarchy that you should follow? Absolutely – and any good foreclosure attorney will tell you that you need to take care of yourself first. Sometimes that means declaring bankruptcy – but you still need to follow the hierarchy of making payments to continue living a normal life.

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Debt Collection Laws: The Hierarchy of Making Payments

What does “taking care of yourself” mean? It’s pretty simple, really, and most of this would likely be the same whether or not you were dealing with the foreclosure.

Food, clothes, essential medical expenses. While not a bill per se, the first thing that you need to make sure you take care of is paying for the necessities that keep you healthy and proactive.

Utilities. You probably have a bit more leeway on your utility bills, but if you don’t pay up in a few months, companies tend to turn off water and power. That’s just not a livable situation.

Car loans. If you make payments on your car, you’d better do your best to keep up with them or you may find it repossessed. This is especially important if you drive to and from work.

Child Support. If you are divorced and have child support obligations, this payment will not go away and not paying can bring serious consequences.

Credit cards. You can string credit card debt along for a while, but the financing charges are so costly that it’s really much smarter to take care of them as soon as possible.

HOA. As you can see, dealing with the inconvenience of not being able to have pizza delivered comes fairly low on the list of priorities. Making your HOA payments is important, but it shouldn’t come at the expense of any of the above.

Debt Collection Laws: Talk to a Good Foreclosure Attorney about Your Situation

Of course, this hierarchy is subject to change based on your personal situation. You might, for example, need to pay income tax debts, need money for child care or to pay for tools that allow you to continue working and making money.

Regardless, speaking with an experienced debt settlement attorney about the debt collection laws in Florida can help you make the best decisions. No matter what your financial situation may be, you need solutions that will put you back in control of your debt and your life.

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