New nursing school graduates are having an incredibly difficult time landing their first job - and the problem is exponentially worse in California than anywhere else.
Our Los Angeles bankruptcy lawyers recently learned that the National Student Nurse's Association conducted a survey revealing that more than 35 percent of newly-licensed registered nurses weren't working in their chosen field - even four months after they had graduated.
That's nationwide. In California, nearly 45 percent of new registered nurses had no job even 18 months after graduation.
It's become a catch-22: Hospitals and other facilities are only interested in hiring nurses with experience. However, few are willing to hire those new nurses so that they can acquire that experience.
While we recognize that similar scenarios are happening in other occupational fields, it is more pronounced amongst nurses, many of whom had no expectation of lack of opportunity when they first entered school. In fact, many news outlets across the country were talking about a vast nursing shortage.
But when the economy spiraled, fewer nurses left the profession than normally do as a result of retirement, burn-out and child-rearing. This has meant hospitals can be choosier with new recruits.
Some of these new graduates may wonder whether bankruptcy makes sense, especially because it won't allow them to whittle down their student loan debt. The answer it is depends, but it may actually allow you to be more financially stable as you look forward. Chances are, if you are unemployed, you will likely qualify for Chapter 7 automatically. A Chapter 7 filing will give you the ability to wipe away all your existing medical bills, credit cards and other debts - leaving you with a better ability to begin tackling your student loan once you do get a job.
You could choose also to file a Chapter 13, but because this route would require you to adhere to a repayment plan, it may not be the best choice for you if you have no reliable source of income. Some unemployed debtors do have unemployment benefits, rental income or possibly disability insurance that could be counted as income to help make a payment plan possible - if you decide to go that route. Then if you do get a job at some point during the bankruptcy, you will typically be required to let the court or the trustee know so your payment plan can be adjusted accordingly.
But often, it's easier to simply go with a Chapter 7 plan and have the debt simply gone for good.
The good news for new nursing grads is that it appears this rough patch may be temporary. As baby boomers age and health care reform has expanded access to medical care, the demand is likely to increase. Plus, older nurses are going to begin retiring, and we may even start to see another nurse shortage.
In the meantime, consider a bankruptcy filing to start your future off with a fresh start.
If you considering a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Los Angeles, contact the Nader Law Firm at 1-800-568-0707.
For nursing jobs, new grads need not apply, Jan. 23, 2013, By Annalyn Kurtz, CNN Money
More Blog Entries:
Paychecks Will Still Shrink Amid Fiscal Cliff Deal, Jan. 7, 2013, Los Angeles Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyer Blog