When will my bankruptcy be filed?

     No matter which chapter of bankruptcy you file, you must participate in a credit counseling course.  This course is done on the phone or online.  At our initial consultation, I will provide you with a list of credit counseling agency that you may use to obtain your certificate.

    The amount of time it takes to get your bankruptcy on file with the Court which would stop all actions by creditors, depends upon your situation, and how quickly you can provide the information requested, complete the credit counseling course and pay the fees pursuant to the retainer agreement provided to you at your appointment.     

      After our initial consultation, I will provide you with a list of documents that I will need in order to prepare a bankruptcy along with a Retainer Agreement.  Upon receipt of all of the documents requested, I will contact you to schedule an appointment to review the bankruptcy petition and schedules I have prepared.  The normal time between your providing the documents and your appointment with me is 2-7 days.  However, if you are being threatened with a foreclosure, repossession, or wage garnishment,I can file the initial paperwork with the Court to stop the creditor from foreclosing, repossessing or garnishing with 24 hours of receipt of the necessary documents and fees with the remaining schedules and statements being filed fourteen days later.   


     If I have everything I need when we review the bankruptcy, and there are no changes to be made, or issues to be resolved,  your bankruptcy could be filed with the Court. 

How much does it cost to file a bankruptcy?

    The cost of filing a bankruptcy depends upon which chapter you file.  The filing fee of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is $335.00, and the filing fee for a Chapter 13 is  $310.00.

   

    The attorney fees charged depend upon the complexity of your case.  After receiving your free consultation with me, I will provide you with a Retainer Agreement outlining the services I will be providing along with the attorney fees being charged. 

When will I get my discharge?

  You file a bankruptcy in order to get a discharge from your debts. Generally, you will receive your discharge in a Chapter 7 within 90-120 days from the date of the filing of your petition.  Your discharge can be denied if you lie on your petition and schedules, conceal an asset, disobey a Court order, or otherwise fail to cooperate with the Trustee or the Court.  This is not a complete listing of reasons that your discharge may be denied. At your free consultation, I will discuss with you the reasons your discharge may be denied. 

 

Also, there are certain debts that you may still be responsible for paying after your bankruptcy.  These debts are either non-dischargeable debts or debts which you have agreed to pay despite the filing of the bankruptcy.  For example debts that you may agree to pay are: mortgage debt, car debt, or other secured debt. 

  The bankruptcy code states that certain debts are not dischargeable.  For example, student loans, certain taxes, alimony, child support, and in some instances property settlement agreements entered into in a divorce may not be discharged when you file.  Other debts that may not qualify for a discharge are debts for fraud, willful and malicious injury , cash advances and credit card charges incurred within 90 days prior to filing and breach of fiduciary duties.  This is not a complete list of all of the non dischargeable debts, but I will discuss this with you at your consultation.

How will a bankruptcy affect my credit?

    

   A bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for up to 10 years and may effect your ability to obtain financing.  You can work to re-establish your credit after you file.  You will have to take a course after you file called a financial management course in order to receive your discharge.  This course will discuss how to manage your money and establish credit.

Will I get to keep my tax refund when I file bankruptcy?

    When you file a bankruptcy, any tax refund you receive may have to be turned over to your Trustee.  How much will have to be turned over depends on which chapter of bankruptcy you file,  the date on which you file your petition, and the amount you will be receiving.  I will discuss this in more depth at your consultation.

Does my spouse have to file bankruptcy with me?

     Your spouse does not have to file a bankruptcy with you.  You can file a petition without your spouse; however, your spouse's income may have to be disclosed in your petition along with his/her expenses.  This is something you can discuss with me at any consultation.

Do I make too much money to file bankruptcy?

     The amount of money you make will determine which Chapter of bankruptcy you qualify to file.  The bankruptcy code requires that you provide proof of the last 6 months of income to determine which Chapter of bankruptcy to file.  No matter your income, you will qualify to file a bankruptcy.  However, you may have to file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy to repay something to your creditors.  It may be pennies on the dollars or 100% depending on your median income.  

Do I have to list the debt on my house and car if I file for bankruptcy, even if I am current and want to keep them?

    One of the first principles of bankruptcy is that you have to list everyone that you owe.  This includes relatives, doctors, credit cards, and any mortgages and vehicle loans that you owe.   Even if you are current on these debts and want to continue to pay on them.  If you are filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you can reaffirm the debt with the creditor you want to pay.  It is up to the creditor whether to enter into a reaffirmation agreement with you.  The consequences of entering into reaffirmation agreement will be discussed if you have a free consultation with this office.