The loss of a job can be a shock, especially when the economy is unpredictable and work is scarce. For many in New Jersey, a job loss comes at what seems like the worst possible time. Already dealing with credit card debt, medical bills and other financial obligations, those who lose their jobs may feel they have few options for the future. Rather than giving in to fear and despair, it may be smart to be proactive about one’s finances.

The first step someone can take after losing a job is to assess his or her financial situation. How much money is coming in, and where does the money go? Are there areas of spending where a family can cut back, and are there major purchases that they can postpone, such as buying a new TV? While it may feel discouraging to take any part-time job available, having a regular source of income may ease one’s mind while looking for more permanent work.

Other places to find money include asking for a severance package from one’s former employer or taking advantage of unemployment insurance or other support programs. Of course, for many who are in this situation, credit cards become go-to source of payment for groceries, gas and other necessities. This can be a challenge for those whose credit cards are already dangerously close to or over the limit.

Facing financial hardships following a job loss can be especially difficult for those who have the burden of overwhelming credit card debt. Seeking relief from that burden may be the one bright spot in a dark and uncertain time. A compassionate New Jersey attorney can provide guidance and advice for debt relief options such as bankruptcy to offer the hope of a more positive future.