FAQ (Frequently Asked Bankruptcy Questions)
FAQ -Our Mesa Bankruptcy Lawyers offer answers to your bankruptcy questions.
What are the different chapters of bankruptcy?
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: One of the most common FAQ. Also, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is the most common chapter of bankruptcy filed in Arizona. Chapter 7 refers to the chapter of the Bankruptcy Code providing for liquidation or the sale of a debtor’s nonexempt property with the proceeds being distributed to the creditors. The bankruptcy court and laws will evaluate the debtor’s income and expenses to determine if the debtor may proceed in declaring chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Chapter 11 Bankruptcy: Chapter 11 Bankruptcy usually deals with partnerships or corporations. It allows the business to re-organize their debt and stay in business. In a chapter 11 the debtor works out a plan with the bankruptcy trustee to pay. A Chapter 11 debtor usually proposes a plan of reorganization to keep its business alive and payback it’s creditors over time.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy: Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is better know as a reorganization bankruptcy as it allows provides for the adjustment of debtors to keep many of their possessions and only pay a portion of their debt back to their creditors over a payment plan of 3 to 5 years.
Will Bankruptcy Wipe Out All My Debts?
A standard bankruptcy will wipe out debt, with a few exceptions: A bankruptcy will not eliminate the following debt:
- Child support or alimony debt
- Debt/fines/penalties owed to a government agency
- Student loans (“undue hardship” cases, if proved to the court, may be an exception)
- Debt as the result of “malicious or willful” harm
- Taxes and debts incurred to pay taxes
- Debt resulting from a DUI charge
- Mortgages and other liens which are not paid in the bankruptcy case (NOTE: a bankruptcy will erase your obligation to pay any additional money if the property is sold by the creditor).
- Debt not listed on the bankruptcy petition
- Debt as a result of loans received by knowingly giving false information to a creditor
What Property Can I Keep?
In a chapter 7 bankruptcy case, all property which the law deems “exempt” from the claims of creditors. Because these exemptions vary from state to state, you will want to be informed of the federal bankruptcy exemptions: it is important to review with an attorney familiar with Arizona bankruptcy laws.
Can Bankruptcy Help Me Get My Vehicle Back After it has been Repossessed?
This answer is a little bit convoluted. It depends on when the vehicle has already been repossessed and if you are planning on filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection. Ask an experienced Mesa Bankruptcy Lawyer to find out which chapter of bankruptcy best suits you.
Additionally, time is of the essence. Once your car is repossessed you only have a short time (usually less than 2 weeks) before the lender sells it to someone else. Keep in mind, once the vehicle is sold and title passes to a third party, you normally cannot get the car back. However, if the vehicle has not been sold, you still have a chance to get your vehicle back because the automatic stay from filing bankruptcy will stop the sale and prevent the repossession of your vehicle.
Do I really need an attorney? Can’t I just file bankruptcy myself?
It is possible, but not recommended. Do you need legal representation from someone who is an expert in Arizona Bankruptcy Law? Yes. If you want to take full advantage of your rights ad opportunities concerning bankruptcy. Unless you understand thoroughly the Arizona Bankruptcy Law, leave it to an expert who will represent your best interests and who has helped clients achieve a successful outcome. The cost of retaining an Arizona Bankruptcy Lawyer is the cost of knowing that you are following all legal procedures — it could be advantageous to your case to have an attorney who is familiar with the Arizona court system.
Can I Own Anything After Bankruptcy?
Yes, you can. Not being able to own anything for a given time period after filing bankruptcy is a myth. You can keep your exempt property or anything you obtain after the bankruptcy is filed. If you receive an inheritance, however, or life insurance benefit or a property settlement within 180 days of filing, this money or property may have to be paid to creditors if it is not exempt.
Can I Erase My Student Loan Debt in a Bankruptcy?
It is not impossible, but very difficult to discharge student loans in a bankruptcy. are difficult, but not impossible. Furthermore, our firm has accomplished this before, and we help our clients find options and creative alternative solutions to deal with the debt. This is a popular FAQ with several people. Student loans debt is now higher than credit card debt in this country.
What is Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy is the legal way to stop collection actions such as lawsuits, foreclosures, repossessions, and garnishments. Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Mesa wipes out most debts. A Mesa Chapter 13 Bankruptcy repays creditors and helps you keep assets. Therefore, call and set up a free consultation with our low cost Mesa bankruptcy attorneys now. Find out if a bankruptcy can help you get out of debt and start living again! Call us now at (480) 833-8000. Contact us now!
Does filing a Chapter 13 mean I will have to pay back all of my debts?
A great FAQ. No. People do not realize that they can get the similar results in both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. In a Chapter 13, a client files a payment plan outlining how to pay back a portion of the debt (typically over three to five years). The specifics of the plan will depend on the debt burden, income. Having an attorney knowledgable and experienced in Arizona bankruptcy law is crucial.
Will I take on my ex-spouse’s debt?
A common asked FAQ by couples struggling with a relationship. If I divorce my spouse, will I be required to take on his or her debt? Depending on the type of debts and when or how they were acquired, the debts may belong to both spouses or just one. Make certain your divorce attorney is experienced and expert in Arizona bankruptcy law. Divorce and bankruptcy are very much interconnected: My AZ Lawyers help our clients determine what is most advantageous for your particular situation, and we can provide alternatives to bankruptcy before or after a split.
What are my options besides bankruptcy?
Our firm can help you to find an effective alternative to bankruptcy. Take advantage of our FREE, no obligation CONSULTATION and you can discuss options with an experienced Arizona attorney. Some of our successful strategies include: we help clients restructure mortgages, complete deeds in lieu of foreclosure, negotiate favorable debt settlements, we can recommend property liquidation, and we can suggest payment plans outside of bankruptcy.
What will my life be like after bankruptcy? Is there life after bankruptcy?
Absolutely! Our firm is dedicated to seeing you through the entire bankruptcy process, including “post-bankruptcy”. We can also help you rebuild your credit immediately after receiving a bankruptcy discharge. There is no doubt your credit will take a hit, but that is where taking the right steps can lead to a promising financial future. In addition, our firm allows time for consultation to give tips to restore credit after bankruptcy, making the most of a fresh financial start. This is a common FAQ that many of our Mesa bankruptcy clients wonder.
Will I have to appear in court?
A common FAQ. You will have to attend a “meeting of creditors” proceeding in most bankruptcy cases. At this appearance, you will meet with the bankruptcy trustee and any creditor who chooses to attend. At this meeting, which is a short and simple procedure most of the time, you will be asked several questions about your bankruptcy forms and about your financial situation. Furthermore, some clients occasionally have to appear at a hearing if complications arise in their case, or if the client chooses to dispute a debt. If filing a chapter 13, you may have to appear in court when the judge decides whether to approve your payment plan. At any time you are required to go to court, you will receive notice of the date and time from the court and from your attorney.
Before you have to attend a hearing, our attorney will answer any questions you have and prepare you for everything you can expect to see and hear.
How do I know if I can file bankruptcy? Who can file bankruptcy?
Any individual person or business that owes money to a creditor can file a bankruptcy petition.
I Have Decided To File For Bankruptcy. What do I do now? How do I get started?
You will need to start by compiling a list of debts — past and present — as well a list of assets and liabilities. If you don’t know what these are, exactly, contact an experienced Arizona Bankruptcy Law attorney. Also, My AZ Lawyers offers a FREE no obligation consultation to get you started and to give you information. You will also need a statement of financial affairs (this will need to be filed with the bankruptcy court) and a filing fee.
Can a co-signer on a loan be responsible for a debt if the other person declares bankruptcy?
Yes. The co-signer may be required by the lender to make payments on a loan once the principal signer has declared bankruptcy. Obviously, this is why it is important to really consider co-signing a loan: a co-signer must be ready and able, to pay the loan in the event that the principal signor cannot. Have an FAQ? By all means, contact our Mesa bankruptcy lawyers right away.