If you’re buried in debt and overwhelmed with calls and messages from bill collectors, it’s time to look at your bankruptcy options. Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy are two common paths to finding a fresh financial future. Both of these options are designed to help people facing serious financial difficulties such as heavy credit card debt, huge medical bills and pending foreclosures. The key is to act fast, before it’s too late.
What Options Do I Have in Filing for Bankruptcy?
The primary two paths for most Americans are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 7, also known as a liquidation bankruptcy, attempts to clear as many debts as possible as quickly as possible. Unsecured debts, like medical bills and credit card balances, can usually be wiped out entirely. The process takes about three to five months, typically. Chapter 13, also called a reorganization bankruptcy, is a detailed plan to reorganize debts. Debts are prioritized by types and the plan pays creditors what the law requires before you receive a discharge on balances. You’ll have a bankruptcy plan that lasts at minimum of three years. Afterward you’ll be in a much better place financially and will have a chance to reclaim your good name with creditors.
How Do I Choose Between Liquidation and Reorganization Plans?
If you’re a homeowner, look closely at Chapter 13 bankruptcy because it may allow you to halt a foreclosure, to remain in your home, and to limit the impact on your family’s life. About one-third of all filers go the Chapter 13 route. It’s a good choice for employed people with reasonable incomes who still can’t cover all of their monthly bills. Chapter 7 may be a better choice if you have a low income and extremely high bills that are impossible for you to ever pay. You will work with your attorney to provide required documents and information required to petition the Bankruptcy Court for a discharge. In order to qualify for Chapter 7, you will need to pass the income based“means test,” so consult your attorney to discuss how to handle this part of the bankruptcy process.
What If I’m Facing Foreclosure?
The main thing to remember about foreclosure and bankruptcy is that you must not wait to file. Time is of the essence. After a foreclosure has reached a certain point -typically the point of having your house sold at sheriff’s auction- it’s too late. Bankruptcy can implement an automatic stay that gives you time to get caught up on your house payments. In a Chapter 7, you could still lose your home later, when the stay lifts, so beware that you must make the right choice for your specific situation. Consult a bankruptcy attorney who can explain your options for saving your house.
Will Bankruptcy Wipe Out All of My Debts?
No bankruptcy option can guarantee to clear 100% of your debts, because by law, some debts are not able to be discharged in bankruptcy. For example, student loans, back taxes, alimony and child support payments will usually remain in effect despite bankruptcy. However, filing for bankruptcy is still a wise choice, because you’ll be able to afford any remaining payments much more easily after wiping out other types of dischargeable debt like credit card balances, medical bills, unsecured loans and so forth. Consult an experienced bankruptcy attorney who can help you understand which of your debts will be cleared in bankruptcy and which bills you will continue to pay.
Sawin & Shea – Indianapolis Bankruptcy Attorneys
Filing for bankruptcy is not the end. It’s the beginning of a new financial life for you. The Indiana bankruptcy attorneys at Sawin & Shea can help you get rid of the overwhelming debt and advise you on life after bankruptcy. We are here for you during this life-changing process. Please do not hesitate to call us today at 317-759-1483 or send an email for a free consultation. We are ready to help.
Nobody wants to come in and talk about bankruptcy. But many times my clients feel much better after they’ve been in to talk to us about how we can help them get their life back. If you’re suffering from credit calls, harassment, lawsuits, garnishment, if somebody’s foreclosing against your house or you think somebody is going to take your car back.
We have ways that we can help you. Please call us today. We offer a free consultation. Let us help you de-stress your life and get back on good financial footing.