Bankruptcy Law Firm
Filing for bankruptcy is almost never a desired situation, but it is often the only feasible course of action for those who find themselves in overwhelming amounts of debt. When you’re unable to pay back your creditors while simultaneously accruing new debt, then it might be time to consider bankruptcy.
However, filing for bankruptcy shouldn’t be a spontaneous decision and you should really consult with a lawyer to learn more.
If you’re currently weighing your options, here are some frequently asked questions to consider.
- What is Chapter 7 versus Chapter 13 Bankruptcy? Chapter 7, also known as straight bankruptcy, refers to type of bankruptcy filing that uses the liquidation of your non-exempt assets to pay off creditors. Once you have paid back the amounts or have satisfied the creditors, much of your debt will be wiped clean. However, certain debts aren’t included, such as student loans. Moreover, you may not have to get rid of all of your assets when filing Chapter 7, but you will need to report them all. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a form of repayment process where you agree to pay the creditors back over the course of three to five years, depending on your specific situation. This process may not completely eradicate all of your debt, particularly if you accumulate anymore during the repayment term. If you’re unsure of which chapter is right for you, or if you have any other filing options, a consultation with our attorneys can help you figure out the best course of action.
- Is going to court part of the process? Typically, you won’t see the inside of a courtroom unless there are issues that can’t be resolved by other means. You are required to attend a hearing meeting but it isn’t in a courtroom setting, and you will presumably meet with your lawyer on a regular basis until you’ve established bankruptcy. A dispute between you and your creditors, however, may result in a courtroom appearance.
- Is filing bankruptcy a sure-thing? No, you may not be able to file for bankruptcy if your creditors refuse your filing, in which case you will most likely end up in court. Should that happen, you will want to consult with your attorney to figure out if taking your creditors to court is worth it, or if you should find an alternative route. If your attorney thinks that you are legally entitled to file for bankruptcy and have a solid case, then going to court may result in you being able to file for bankruptcy.
- Is it illegal to leave assets unreported? Yes, it is considered a felony to not report all of your assets when filing for bankruptcy. There are special divisions that investigate occurrences of fraud involved with bankruptcy and if they find that you failed to report certain properties, you can face serious penalties. If you aren’t sure what should be reported, contact your attorney for assistance.
Bankruptcy can be the best outcome of a poor situation, or it can be completely unnecessary. Before making a quick decision, give a bankruptcy lawyer Tampa, FL trusts a call. They can help determine if bankruptcy is the right option for you and help you throughout the process.
Thanks to The Law Office of Michael A. Ziegler, P.L. for their insight into bankruptcy law and the basics you need to know.