Filing Bankruptcy And Protecting Your Home

Homeowners very often wind up filing for bankruptcy. Before filing, homeowners wonder whether or not they will be able to keep their house through the bankruptcy process. For most homeowners, there is not sufficient equity in the property which would cause them to lose the property. In other words, the property has no administrative value for a chapter 7 trustee to attempt to sell the property and pay creditors a pro rata share.  Now each state is different in terms of how much equity you can have in real estate and still keep that property free and clear when going through the bankruptcy process. In the state of Illinois, you are entitled to a $15,000 exemption in your homestead, real + Read More

What Are The Requirements For Filing A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Jesse Barrientes: What are the requirements for filing a Chapter 7, the pre-filing requirements? David Siegel: Yeah, before a case can be filed, the individual has to go through certain requirements and the first of which is they must take a credit counseling session. Jesse Barrientes: What does that consist of? David Siegel: The credit counseling session is basically a one hour session which can be done on the computer or in person or over the Internet. The cost is approximately $15 these days. And it basically runs you through a series of questions about your income, your assets, and your liabilities and gives you some other ideas of how to get out of debt other than filing a + Read More

What Happens When Only One Co-Debtor Files For Bankruptcy?

The Typical Co-Debtor Protection In most circumstances, when only one co-debtor files for bankruptcy protection, the non-filing co-debtor usually can maintain the property provided that the co-debtor continues to make timely payments. An interesting situation arose in a recent case. The particular property is a boat. Husband and wife both signed for and are responsible for the debt owed to the boat financing company. It turns out that husband was forced to file a chapter 7 bankruptcy case. The lender with the boat as security sent a reaffirmation agreement seeking to have the debtor reaffirm that debt despite the fact that there was a non-filing co-debtor spouse. When I contacted the + Read More

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Requires The Debtor To Be Honest

My Recent Client I recently had the opportunity to speak with a chapter 13 debtor. This debtor had done a prior chapter 13, where the plan payment was $350 per month. The debtor was unable to make his monthly payment to the trustee and his case was soon dismissed. The debtor then came to my office to talk about re-filing chapter 13. This debtor had parking tickets owed to the city of Chicago which were causing his license to be suspended. He did have some other debt but the significant debt was that owed to the city of Chicago. We went through a confidential bankruptcy intake questionnaire, we agreed on a contract price, and we began to prepare his petition for filing. Upon further review, + Read More

There Are Different Types Of Bankruptcy

It’s easy to be confused when talking about the different types of bankruptcy. Most people are aware that bankruptcy is a way to eliminate debt. What they are not sure of, is whether it’s really in their best interest to file at all. There are some cases where it’s a tough decision. The person may be getting by, but struggling. The person might feel that there is no relief in sight if they continue down the same path month after month making minimum payments on credit cards. For others, they have no choice but to file bankruptcy. They may be garnished and a creditor is taking 15% of their net take-home pay. In other cases, a bank account might be frozen prohibiting that person from making + Read More

Bankruptcy & The Right Time To File

Chapter 7: Time To File? David Siegel: When would somebody want to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy as opposed to not filing at all? What is the reason why someone would file a Chapter 7? Jesse Barrientes: I guess there are a lot of different reasons. One would be for example if somebody filed a lawsuit against you and what somebody gets a judgment, and I think we talked about that at one of our programs. We have gone through the small claims process and some other processes. But once a creditor obtains a judgment, than they do what they call supplementary proceedings that include the possibility of attaching of lean to your wages, wage garnishment or of attaching to your bank account or any + Read More

Protecting Your Assets In A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Filing

Protecting Your Assets In A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Filing There are two main goals in filing a chapter 7 bankruptcy. The first goal is to eliminate as much debt as possible in order to get a fresh start. The second goal is to protect either all or as much of your personal property as possible while going through the process. The state of Illinois provides for specific property exemptions. These exemptions allow you to protect equity in real estate, equity in personal property, and otherwise protect assets from creditors. The bankruptcy trustee, who is assigned to your case, has the duty of examining all of your assets to determine whether or not there is anything available for + Read More

What Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy In A Nut Shell?

Chapter 7 bankruptcy can be confusing for many people.  There are different scenarios where Chapter 7 comes into play to change lives.  In the latest Legal Action show, we discuss the basics of Chapter 7 and how it can be used.  A partial transcription of the show is listed below.  You can also view the Chapter 7 video that accompanies the transcription.  You will learn that Chapter 7 bankruptcy provides a fresh start and a discharge for all of one's dischargeable debt.  For more information, please contact the office to learn your rights. David Siegel: Hello, welcome.  My name is David Siegel.  Thanks for joining me.  Today were going to be talking about Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  Once + Read More

What Is The Automatic Stay In Bankruptcy?

The automatic stay in bankruptcy is the notice that puts creditors on notice that they cannot take certain actions against you in terms of collecting the debt.  The automatic stay is created immediately upon filing of the bankruptcy case whether or not official notice has been received by that creditor or not.  The automatic stay is exactly what you are the bankruptcy case.  It is the protection that tells creditors you have to stop calling, to stop trying to collect the debt, to stop most court appearances and you must obey the bankruptcy rules and filed the bankruptcy process with regard to this individual debtor. When someone files in my office, we obtain a case number.  The case + Read More

Can I protect My Property And Still File Bankruptcy?

You Can Protect Most Property You can file bankruptcy and protect a certain amount of personal property. If you are filing a chapter 7 bankruptcy, then you have certain exemption amounts under Illinois law that allows you to protect a certain amount of property. For example, you can protect up to $15,000 worth of equity in real estate. You can also protect up to $2400 worth of equity in a motor vehicle. You can also protect $4000 of miscellaneous personal property that can be put over any type of personal property that you may have. If you are above and beyond the exemption amount, your attorney will advise you that some of your property might be at risk in exchange for your fresh start. If + Read More