If you have large amounts of consumer debt but don’t qualify for Chapter 7, you might consider filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 13 might also be the better choice if you have a home you want to keep. At the Law Office of David A. Fernandez, P.C., we are determined to provide reliable debt counsel and staunch representation so you can make the best decision for your circumstances and put together a successful plan of action. Since 2009, we have focused almost exclusively on consumer debt issues, so we know how to apply bankruptcy law in a manner that produces positive results.
When most people think of personal bankruptcy, they think of Chapter 7, which is liquidation bankruptcy. The advantage of Chapter 7 is that you get a quick discharge of your eligible debt. The disadvantage is that the bankruptcy trustee seizes many of your assets and sells them to partially satisfy your creditors. If you have a nice home with a hefty mortgage, you might not be able to save it.
But Chapter 13 takes a different approach. Under Chapter 13, you present a payment plan to the court based on your monthly disposable income. To qualify for Chapter 13, you don’t have to take the means test, but you must:
You stay on the plan for three to five years, during which time you cannot take on any additional debt. When you complete the plan, the court discharges your remaining eligible debt.
Our law firm helps you through every step of the Chapter 13 process. We work closely with you to draft your filings and your proposed payment plan. After you file, you’ll get an automatic stay so your creditors cannot contact you in an effort to collect your debt. You must quickly start making payments on your plan to the bankruptcy trustee, who will divide the payment among your creditors.
Part of the process is a 341 Meeting of Creditors. Being in a room with all the people you owe money to and having them question you about your plan sounds intimidating. But in reality, many creditors don’t bother to send representatives to these meetings, and the questions are mostly pro forma. They want to know that your bankruptcy filing was done in good faith, that you are eligible to file, that you didn’t run up debt in anticipation of filing bankruptcy and that you haven’t been repaying other creditors. We represent you in your 341 meeting and assist you in answering all questions.
Many debtors use Chapter 13 bankruptcy to save their homes from foreclosure. When the court issues an automatic stay, a lender cannot go forward with foreclosure. Your mortgage payments get factored into your payment plan so you won’t fall further behind during that period. When you complete your plan and get the discharge of your eligible debt, your monthly bills are much lower, so you can dedicate more of your resources to making your mortgage payments current.
At the Law Office of David A. Fernandez, P.C., we’re dedicated to helping consumers get debt relief in the manner most appropriate for them. To schedule an appointment with a consumer law attorney, call our firm at 713-893-8509 or contact us online.
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