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What is bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy is a federal law which allows for a legal process to stop debt collection, foreclosures, and repossessions and absolve individuals, businesses, and municipalities of some or all of their debt obligations.
There are different types of bankruptcy. For individuals/consumers the options are Chapter 7 (liquidation) or Chapter 13 (repayment). Which option is right or available to you depends on your individual circumstances, income, assets, and needs. Please schedule a free consultation if you have questions about which type of bankruptcy is best for you to file.

How do I file bankruptcy?
The first step is to contact our office for a free consultation appointment. This appointment usually lasts about one hour. We will go over the details of your individual situation and determine if bankruptcy is right for you. If it is, we will then go over the bankruptcy process, provide you with a detailed list of information required to file your bankruptcy case, and answer any questions you may have.

" Do I need lawyer to file bankruptcy? "
A lawyer is not required to file bankruptcy; however, the paperwork and legal requirements in order to successfully obtain a discharge can be quite complicated. An attorney is best suited to advise you on how to proceed should anything unusual come up in your case, and also on how to properly exempt assets and keep property you do not wish to give up or sell in your bankruptcy.

How much does it cost to file bankruptcy?
The legal fees associated with filing bankruptcy vary depending on the individual circumstances of your case. Please schedule a free consultation so that we may assess your potential case and quote a fee.
In Chapter 7 cases the legal fee is due before work begins on your case. In a Chapter 13 case your legal fees will be included in and paid through your court-approved payment plan.
The filing fee for a Chapter 7 case is $335 and is due before the case is filed with the court, and can be paid separately and at a later date from your legal fees. For a Chapter 13 case the filing fee is $310, and will be the only amount due upfront.

Will I lose my home or have to sell all my property?
Not necessarily. Each case is different, and the details of your situation will be fully considered in the initial free consultation but in many cases you can keep your home and your property. The law allows you to exempt a certain amount of personal property, and a Chapter 13 filing can even assist in getting caught up if you are behind on your mortgage payments and wish to keep your home.

Can bankruptcy stop or prevent a foreclosure?
Again, each case is different, but many times a foreclosure can be stopped by a bankruptcy filing. Please call our office to schedule a free consultation appointment as soon as possible if you are in danger of losing your home to foreclosure.

Does bankruptcy get rid of all my debts?
Not all debts can be discharged in bankruptcy, but most can. Under typical circumstances, student loans, tax debt, and child support/alimony cannot be discharged in bankruptcy.

I have filed bankruptcy before, can I file again?
Yes, but the law mandates that there be a certain amount of time between filings which depends on the type of prior bankruptcy. Please let our office know about any prior bankruptcies, and the dates of those, when calling to schedule your free consultation appointment.

How is bankruptcy different from debt consolidation?
Bankruptcy legally prevents any creditors from suing you or taking other action to collect a debt once it has been filed. Even if your debt consolidation company is making regular payments to your creditors, they are not prohibited from attempting to collect the debt owed in full or suing you. Only bankruptcy protects you from any legal actions creditors may take against you to collect a debt.

When should I file bankruptcy?
You do not need to be behind on any or all of your payments before you file. If you have any concerns about your finances and your ability to pay your debts, it is a good idea to receive a consultation as soon as you begin to feel worried. Bankruptcy can assist in last-minute, emergency situations, but as with most things staying ahead of the game and having time to prepare and plan for the situation creates the better outcome.

Even if you aren’t certain that bankruptcy is the best option for you, or if now is the right time to file, do not hesitate to schedule a free consultation to discuss your options. If bankruptcy isn’t right for you, we will let you know that as well.

To schedule a FREE bankruptcy consultation call (615) 742-1304 or email