There is never a good time to find yourself filing for bankruptcy. If you are even thinking about this, it means that something has gone wrong with your finances.

But here is the good thing: Bankruptcy gives you a way to start fresh. It provides an opportunity to leave the past in the past and work towards a better future.

In some cases, bankruptcy is the result of nothing more than bad luck. For example, you may have fallen on rough times as the result of divorce, medical bills, or even a disability.

Even though bankruptcy is used by most people as a tool to recover from financial trouble, there are others who look at the system as a way of avoiding debt.

Many types of people can get caught up in a bankruptcy fraud scheme, including but not limited to individuals, business owners, and loan officers.

In some cases, bankruptcy fraud is coupled with other crimes, such as identify theft, credit card fraud, and money laundering. When this happens, a person finds him- or herself in an even more challenging position.

While some people set out to commit bankruptcy fraud, others find that they are being accused of this without any knowledge of wrongdoing. Instead, they made an honest mistake along the way, however, the authorities, such as the FBI, do not necessarily agree.

If you have plans of filing for bankruptcy, make sure you know what is expected of you and how to take the right steps along the way. This can help you avoid a situation in which you are charged with bankruptcy fraud.

Source: FBI, “Bankruptcy Fraud,” accessed Jan. 20, 2016