Bankruptcy

BANKRUPTCY

Fifty Dollars Off

The decision to file for bankruptcy can be a difficult one. Let the professionals at Great Lakes Legal Team assist in helping you make the right decisions regarding your financial future. We can help you get a FRESH START!

Chapter 7

What is a Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

In this kind of bankruptcy, the debtor does not set up a plan to pay the creditors. In most Chapter 7 Bankruptcy cases, the debtors keep everything they own. This is because exemption laws protect your basic assets such as your house, your cars, your clothes, your household items, your retirement accounts, etc. However, there are limits. If there are items that are not covered by the exemptions, the Trustee will liquidate these assets for the benefit of the creditors. Please call our office and speak with one of our attorney’s or schedule a FREE Initial Consultation to discuss your situation to see if you are at risk of losing anything.

In a Chapter 7, the unsecured debts are simply eliminated, or discharged (*with some exceptions). Unsecured debts that are dischargeable in bankruptcy are:

Credit Card Debt
Unsecured Loans
Medical Bills
Foreclosure and Repossession Deficiencies
Lines of Credit
Judgments
Some Taxes

*Debts that are, in most cases, not dischargeable in bankruptcy include student loans, tax debt, property taxes owing, and domestic support arrearages.

Approximately 4 weeks after the bankruptcy petition is filed, you will attend a short meeting called a 341 Meeting or Meeting of the Creditors. At this meeting you will be asked a few simple questions about your finances by the bankruptcy Trustee assigned to your case. In most cases, approximately 60 days after this meeting, the court will issue a Discharge Order that will eliminate your dischargeable debts.

What happens to my secured property?

Your House

If you are current on your mortgage payments, you can “reaffirm” the debt. This means that
   you can keep your house and continue making your regular mortgage payments.
If you cannot bring your payments up-to-date, and you have regular income, you may want to
   consider filing a Chapter 13, which will give you 36-60 months to pay the arrearages.
If you cannot bring your payments up-to-date, and have no income, the mortgage company
   probably cannot be stopped from foreclosing on your house. The Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
   gives you the opportunity to “walk away” from the house and the mortgage with no penalty.
   This is called “surrendering” the house.

Your Car

If you owe money on your car, and are current on your payments, you can reaffirm the debt
   and keep your car.
If you cannot bring your car payments up-to-date, the auto finance company cannot be
   stopped from repossessing your car unless you file a Chapter 13 and set up a payment
   plan. However, if your payments are high enough that you cannot afford them, you
   should consider surrendering the car back to the creditor. The Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
   allows you to do this with no penalty.

Chapter 13

What is a Chapter 13 bankruptcy?

Chapter 13 is Bankruptcy intended for an individual or family with a regular income. Chapter 13 allows you to keep all of your property, and to set up an affordable payment plan with the Bankruptcy Trustee. The payment plan is typically 3-5 years. At the end of the payment plan, most debts are considered paid in full.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is the only kind of Bankruptcy that will stop a foreclosure or repossession. If you are facing a foreclosure or repossession, please call our office immediately.

Please contact our office with any questions you may have about filing for bankruptcy, or to schedule a FREE Initial Consultation.

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