If you and your family have found yourselves buried in financial debt, one of the first things that come to mind is filing personal bankruptcy. A bankruptcy filing may seem like a life preserver, but it has its drawbacks. Continue reading to learn more about filing personal bankruptcy, and to see if it makes sense for you.
Laws regarding bankruptcy vary by state, so you need to find a lawyer that can walk you through the entire process and help keep your rights protected. In several cases, you can keep your car and your home, but it’s your attorney that will tell you what rights you have, what you can keep, and what you will need to surrender.
If you have had to file for bankruptcy, you should assess the reasons why to make sure that you do not end up in that situation again. For example, if it was for paying too many bills late, you can set up automatic payments so you will not have that problem in the future.
Be extra vigilant about your spending habits until your hearing. Judges take a look at your entire financial picture. They even look at the things you are doing right now, to see if you are trying to take advantage of the system. Show that you are now on the right track financially.
Be fully educated about the rules of bankruptcy. If the courts were to find that you have disregarded any of the rules in place, your petition could be dismissed. Laws prohibit picking and choosing some debts to pay off prior to filing for bankruptcy. Family members cannot be paid off within one year of filing and creditors are limited to ninety days.
Talk to other professionals before talking to a bankruptcy lawyer. Talk to financial advisers and credit counselors to see if bankruptcy is, in fact, your best option. A bankruptcy lawyer has a conflict of interest, so they are less likely to dissuade you from filing for bankruptcy. Finding an impartial, knowledgeable thirty party will give you the complete picture.
When you are thinking about filing bankruptcy, always be honest about everything. Do not think that hiding assets or income will help your case for bankruptcy. It could turn out that the court may just dismiss your petition, and you will not be able to file again to have those debts listed.
Avoid running up your debt limit before you file for bankruptcy. Judges, and creditors look at recent history along with your current situation. A judge can deny some of your debts from being wiped out if, they think you’re just taking advantage of the system. Try to show that that you’re willing to change your fiscal habits.
When meeting with a personal bankruptcy lawyer, be sure you have all of the necessary paperwork with you. This will make the whole filing process go much easier and quicker. Some of the paperwork you should have with you includes loan documents, credit card bills, and any other relevant financial documents.
Don’t wait too long to file bankruptcy if, you have to go that route. Many debtors spend years trying to deal with debt before they file. You can get free consultations with some attorneys, to find out about bankruptcy and your rights. They can suggest the best time to file, and may provide services like credit management.
Before going through the Chapter 7 filing process, ensure that your co-debtors are abreast of any implications relating to this process. You may have your responsibility for your portion of the loan discharged under Chapter 7. However, creditors will want to hold your co-signer responsible completely.
See what your options are. Just because you stop receiving bills when you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, doesn’t mean you are off the hook for paying them. Although you don’t have to pay every bill if you cannot afford to, it is especially important to keep up with payments for any possessions you hope to keep, like your home and auto.
If you want to try to avoid bankruptcy, you have to do everything you can to reduce your expenses. Sit down and write-up every expense you have for the month and start slashing. It does not matter how small, even the buck you spend at the coffee machine helps and adds up.
Do not “�play the system’ before filing bankruptcy. Do not go out and run up all of your credit cards, this does not look good to the judge working on your case, and it will not look good on your record. Once you decide to file, quit using your credit cards immediately.
As you can probably see, there are quite a few things to think about before deciding on a bankruptcy filing. Assess your personal financial situation and the types of debts you have, because not all types of debt are able to be discharged. With a little bit of homework, you can find out whether personal bankruptcy is the right solution for you.