Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
is the most common form of bankruptcy protection. It is an application to a federal judge to wipe away your unsecured debts (secured debts have an asset attached, like a car or a house, that you have to give up to wipe away the debt).
Can I File a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is available to anyone who meets certain eligibility requirements. While you will need a bankruptcy lawyer to carefully review your bankruptcy eligibility in full, the most common requirements are that you have not filed a bankruptcy before in the last 8 years, that you can show the court that you cannot pay back your debts (there is a court formula for this called a means test), and that you are coming to the court in good faith.But What about the New Bankruptcy Laws?
A fresh start is still possible. Personal bankruptcy law did change on October 17, 2005, but most people who were eligible before are still eligible
. There are many myths about the new law that I would like to dispel. First, credit card debts are still allowed to be discharged. Second, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy still wipes out debts in their entirety, not just in part. Third, only people who can afford to pay their debts can be forced into a Chapter 13 bankruptcy
.What Types of Debts Can I Wipe Away in Chapter 7?
Most unsecured debts can be wiped away in Chapter 7. There are some debts that Chapter 7 cannot help you with including taxes, child support, maintenance, property settlements
(this is tricky, so if you have been divorced, make sure to let me know), student loans, court fines such as traffic tickets, debts incurred through fraud or theft, and some debts you have voluntarily incurred just before filing. Most everything else can be wiped away.What if Chapter 7 Cannot Help Me?
Chapter 7 is usually the best option; however, if you are not eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy or if Chapter 7 will not meet your specific needs and goals, Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a useful alternative.Flat-fee Pricing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcies
My attorney fees range from $900.00 to $1,500.00 depending on the complexity of your case but most cases qualify for the $900.00 price. In addition, court-related costs typically add up to between $450.00 to $500.00 dollars.
Although your Chapter 7 bankruptcy case cannot be filed until the fees are paid (I cannot be your creditor and your bankruptcy attorney in the same case), we can work on a payment plan and a strategy to keep creditors off your back until you can get your chapter 7 bankruptcy filed.