Are you feeling overwhelmed by your credit card bills? Are they mounting up to more than you can manage? Or maybe you’ve suffered a job loss, illness, or other financial setback and can’t keep up with the payments.
If this sounds familiar, you may be considering filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It’s a serious decision, and should be taken under the direction of an experienced bankruptcy attorney.
But what is bankruptcy and how does it work? Whether you’re thinking of going down this route or simply want to understand what’s involved in filing for bankruptcy, we can help explain everything you need to know.
We can help you assess your debt and determine if Chapter 7 is the right option for you. It’s also important to plan for life after bankruptcy and how you’ll handle your finances moving forward. To speak to a member of our legal team about your options for finding financial freedom, contact our office today.
What Does Bankruptcy Mean?
Dealing with financial difficulties can cause immense stress and worry. For those struggling with large amounts of debt, there may come a time when bankruptcy is one of the most viable options for a fresh financial start.
Bankruptcy is a legal process that allows individuals to eliminate certain forms of debt, such as credit card debt or medical bills, by selling nonexempt assets in order to repay creditors. You do not have to make a repayment plan for your debt.
Exempt and Nonexempt Assets
One of the major concerns for many individuals is what assets will be protected during this process. Fortunately, there are assets that fall under “exempt” categories and are protected from being sold or liquidated to pay off debts. These can include a primary residence, certain retirement accounts, personal property, and tools of the trade. It’s important to note, however, that the laws surrounding exemptions vary by state.
Types of Debts that Can Be Discharged
If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, it’s crucial to understand which debts can be discharged. A bankruptcy attorney can help you navigate the complex world of bankruptcy and explain which debts can be eliminated, such as credit card debt and medical bills. However, not all debts can be discharged, such as student loans and recent taxes.
How to File for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy with your Attorney
Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can be a daunting and complicated process. That’s why it’s important to seek the guidance of a bankruptcy lawyer who can walk you through every step of the way. From determining your eligibility to filling out the necessary paperwork, a knowledgeable and experienced lawyer can help ease the stress and confusion of the process. To file for this type of bankruptcy, you must file:
- Petition with the bankruptcy court serving the area where you live
- List of your assets and liabilities
- Your current income and expenditures
- Statement of your financial affairs
- Schedule of executory contracts and unexpired leases
- Copy of your tax return for the most recent tax year as well as tax returns filed during the case
- Certificate of credit counseling
- Copy of any debt repayment plan developed through credit counseling
- Evidence of payment from employers received 60 days before filing
- Statement of monthly net income and any anticipated increase in income or expenses after filing
- Record of any interest you have in federal or state qualified education or tuition accounts
Understanding the ins and outs of bankruptcy law can be overwhelming, but with the right attorney by your side, you can feel confident in your decisions and focus on moving forward towards a fresh financial start.
Your Trusted Bankruptcy Attorney
An experienced bankruptcy lawyer is knowledgeable about relevant laws and regulations and can help you through the process. Your attorney can provide advice during all steps of filing for bankruptcy, from organizing and evaluating financial information to preparing documents and attending court hearings.
Don’t hesitate to contact us if you are considering bankruptcy — our team offers free consultation so you can get the information you need regarding legal assistance for your case.