Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is often referred to as straight bankruptcy or liquidation. For those who qualify, it allows individuals to discharge, or not to pay, unsecured debts. Unsecured debts typically include credit cards, medical bills, and signature loans, as well as unpaid rent or utility bills.
Congress enacted this law to offer a fresh start to individuals, married couples or businesses facing financial difficulty. Filing under Chapter 7 Chapter 7: The chapter of the Bankruptcy Code providing for liquidation, i.e., the sale of a debtor’s nonexempt property and the distribution of the proceeds to creditors. allows you to keep most—if not all—assets and to start fresh. Chapter 7 typically does not discharge student loans, certain IRS debts, family support obligations, or criminal fines or fees.
Our team works closely with you to determine the best course of action. If you decide to file Chapter 7, you will work directly with an attorney to create documents, called schedules, which show your creditors, assets, income and expenses. These schedules are signed by you and filed with the United States Bankruptcy Court. Once these documents are filed the automatic stay – or suspension of all collection efforts – of the Federal Bankruptcy Code takes effect. The bankruptcy clerk’s office will notify your creditors of your filing and the harassing phone calls, lawsuits and garnishments garnishment: The process of petitioning for and getting a court order directing a person or entity (garnishee) to hold funds they owe to someone who allegedly is in debt to another person, often after a judgment has been rendered. For example, a garnishment of wages for delinquent child support. will stop.
It generally takes about 6 months before a judge assigned to your case signs the dischargabledischarge: A release of a debtor from personal liability for certain dischargeable debts set forth in the Bankruptcy Code. A discharge releases a debtor from personal liability for certain debts known as dischargeable debts and prevents the creditors owed those debts from taking any action against the debtor to collect the debts. The discharge also prohibits creditors from communicating with the debtor regarding the debt, including telephone calls, letters, and personal contact. order and you are relieved of all dischargeable debt. Debts which may not be discharged by the court include:
- Large purchases such as appliances, jewelry, furniture;
- Cash advances made in the months prior to filing for bankruptcy relief;
- Student loans;
- Some types of tax debts;
- Alimony, child support and other debts related to family support; and
- Debts due to fraudulent acts and/or intentional tortstort: From French for “wrong,” a civil wrong or wrongful act, whether intentional or accidental, from which injury occurs to another. Torts include all negligence cases as well as intentional wrongs which result in harm. Some intentional torts may also be crimes, such as assault, battery, wrongful death, fraud, conversion (a euphemism for theft) and trespass on property and form the basis for a lawsuit for damages by the injured party. or wrongs.
In a Chapter 7 filing, you are allowed to keep your house and vehicles if you are able to continue to make your normal monthly payments to the mortgage or finance company, and you don’t have an excessive amount of equity in your property.
Please call us at 770.427.5853 to learn more about your options under Chapter 7. We are experts in bankruptcy law and will show you how two decades of bankruptcy experience qualifies us to provide knowledgeable, skilled Chapter 7 representation in a cost-effective manner.