Legal Tips

What bills should I pay, ignore amid coronavirus economic meltdown?


"Once you get your CARE Act checks, and/or your unemployment benefits, make sure you pay your debts in the following order (as a general rule):

- Bring your rent or house payments up to date as quickly as possible.

- Then pay any outstanding utility bills (by doing these two things, your family will at least have a place to live- Buy food and other necessities of life

- Pay your car payment if you don't want it repossessed

- Only after you've done all of the above should you pay any other debts.

We're offering these basic strategies as a path to survival while folks are trying to get through these unprecedented times. I encourage anyone who is in trouble financially and afraid of one of the legal issues we handle to call your local legal aid office to see if we can help.

For Virginians, the phone number to reach the legal aid office nearest you is (866) LEGLAID (534-5243) or visit the website for additional information. Another resource is the National Consumer Law Center, which offers in-depth information on surviving debt, at"