By John Paul Valdez

1) ObamaCare or The Affordable Care Act more correctly has moved the uninsured in California from 22 percent down to 11 percent. Within the Hispanic community down from 35 percent to 25 percent. This is an amazing movement in a positive direction. Not only does it mean that the long term numbers are looking better as we look into the future, but also means that a healthcare economy is burgeoning. That’s literally thousands of new jobs in that sector as we look forward. If you are considering careers at this time, the healthcare industry looks well poised for both growth and stability.

2) Governor Jerry Brown has signed legislation that will favor Tesla, the miraculous car maker, should they decide to build their mega factory here in California to build their high tech batteries. If the choice is made for California, it would brink thousands of jobs to the state. The incentive amounts to millions in tax breaks for the company but this would be more than offset by the number of jobs and increased economy the factory would bring.

3) Finally, not everything is rosy for everyone. Sometimes awaiting a transition into a bigger and better economy doesn’t happen fast enough. I am still asked all too often when a bankruptcy is appropriate. My advice is individual in nature. That is to say that no one factor can be held as a rule of thumb, because each case is so particular. Some things one should keep in mind is that having debt is not a crime. When this country was founded, many came to escape debtor’s prison and the laws were written to understand that credit has risk to all parties, and the interest rates paid speak to that. On larger assets like homes and so forth, lower interest rates are the rule for now and that has helped replace those 8 million jobs we lost in the Great Recession. Still the lower paying jobs that replaced them are not able to have all families fully recuperate. Luckily, the minimum wage will help pull the bottom up a bit, but if you still can’t make it, consider some of these thoughts:


a) If you are not in threat of a tax lien, or garnishment of wages and enforceable judgments against your assets …. You may want to just work with your creditors to the best of your ability understanding that they will continue to hurt your credit profile until you can assume the responsibilities properly.

b) Don’t run out and file a bankruptcy just to put off a few creditors that exceed your ability to pay, this will only hurt your credit profile every bit as much as not having filed the bankruptcy and will cost you money.

c) Typically, the law allows for 7 years of reporting on this type of debt solution or protection from creditors, but your credit can be repaired with secured credit cards and the like sooner. Many more people have bankruptcies on their record than used to be the case.

d) One rule of thumb that some people use is to ask themselves that if they cannot pay off creditors over a five year period, then a bankruptcy may be appropriate.

e) Just don’t be “forced” into a bankruptcy. Get some legal advice without a big investment. I like Gary Whitehead and Associates myself. They work with a bona fide attorney and are less expensive than most “bankruptcy” firms that are run expressly by attorneys themselves that have higher overhead understandably. These are local people who have a stake in the desert. Questions and