We have the people and the experience essential to help you through the bankruptcy process and will be with you through the filing, court appearances and discharge proceedings.”
Our office handles Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy cases. The type of Bankruptcy an individual files depends on each person’s circumstances. We provide counsel to our clients to choose a Bankruptcy filing that will match the Bankruptcy Court’s requirement, considering the assets, income, expenses and debt of the client.
Generally, a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy filing is considered a liquidation filing, where the client’s unsecured debts are discharged by the Bankruptcy Court and the client starts over, while protecting limited assets from his or her creditors. For instance, the client can protect limited equity in a home or car in Chapter 7, but must keep making his or her payments in a current manner. There are no ongoing payments to the Bankruptcy Court’s Trustee to pay the debts that are discharged. Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is not the best choice for all clients because there are income tests that may require the client to pay some or all of the unsecured debts.
A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy filing involves the calculation of the client’s ability to repay his or her debts over a period of time through monthly payments which may extend up to 60 months. These monthly payments are made to the Chapter 13 Trustee. The Trustee will take in the monthly payments and pay out the creditors of the client based on the law. This type of plan often allows the Bankruptcy client to catch up in full his or her creditors that are secured (home mortgage, car loans, for example), but the creditors that are unsecured may not be paid or may be paid only in part. However, at the completion of the Court approved plan, the client is discharged of the remaining non-secured debts (usually medical bills, credit cards and other similar debts) and no longer has to continue paying those debts.
In Bankruptcy, there are certain debts which cannot be discharged. While there are many types of debts that must be paid, it is important to remember that taxes owed are not discharged by the Bankruptcy Court. Additionally, child support and other domestic ordered support are not discharged by the Court and future taxes and child support are not affected by bankruptcy. However, even if you owed back taxes or child support, Bankruptcy may help you get these debts current and help you avoid levy and seizure while you are under the protection of the Bankruptcy Court.