At least 18 restaurants located in Indianapolis and its surrounding suburbs have permanently closed during the first half of 2019. While some restaurants were in business for decades, a handful closed in less than two years of opening, as reported by the Indianapolis Star. Business owners shut down popular breweries, steakhouses and chain restaurants while citing various reasons, including bankruptcy.

Such permanent closures may result in serious consequences for the restaurants’ suppliers, lenders and employees.

Facing a sudden and unexpected period of unemployment

It is not clear how much advance warning the affected Indianapolis restaurant employees received so that they could find another source of income. An employer’s sudden and unexpected closure may lead to a devastating financial loss that leaves an individual struggling to make ends meet. For many unprepared and unemployed primary income earners, it can be an overwhelming or an impossible task juggling their household bills on a limited budget. The relief provided by unemployment benefits may be far below the amount needed to cover all the mortgage or rental payments, credit card bills and food expenses.

According to a survey conducted by the Federal Reserve, overall 40% of Americans already do not have $400 available to cover an emergency. The study, as reported by ABC News, also revealed that 17% of Americans are unable to pay monthly bills in full. It is not surprising to learn that many individuals — working or unemployed — are forgoing necessary medical treatment as they struggle to pay their expenses.

A personal bankruptcy filing may provide the needed relief

Although a personal bankruptcy may appear intimidating, there are two basic ways to file. Whether an individual decides on a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 filing, each format takes into consideration the petitioner’s income, assets and expenses. While the circumstances are different for each filing, many Indianapolis families may be able to keep their homes and cars along with the personal belongings that are most important to them.