Holly and Kevin Kelling have been buried in bills ever since their daughter Courtney was diagnosed with a rare birth defect that left her needing dozens of surgeries.
Kevin lost his job. Their health insurance disappeared. And the final straw, a hospital sued them. The Kellings decided bankruptcy was their only option.
Holly and Kevin are filing bankruptcy not just to stop a lawsuit by this hospital in Ridgewood, NJ. They're also trying to beat a deadline. After October 16, it's going to get a lot tougher for people like them to get out from under their debt. They're getting out with help from bankruptcy.
Once the biggest bankruptcy overhaul in a quarter century takes effect, more filers could end up on payment plans instead of getting much of their debt wiped clean.
The deadline comes at an especially bad time for hurricane victims who might not be able to file in time.