Your Monthly Income Is A Factor In Qualifying For A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

There are income qualifications for filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  If you are over the median for your state then you are subject to a means test.  If it is determined that you have the ability to pay back at least 25% over the next three to five years, then you will not qualify for Chapter 7 relief.  The narration below talks about how it all works.  Jesse Barrientes: Can I make too much money to file a Chapter 7? David Siegel: You can’t make too much money.  If you are over the median for your family size and your locality, then you have to submit to a means test.  The means test is basically a determination as to whether or not you have the ability to pay back a portion of your debt + Read More

Tax Return & The Importance Of Timely Filing – Bankruptcy

In order to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must provide a copy of your most recent Federal tax return.  If you are going to be receiving a sizable refund, then you want to time your bankruptcy filing so that you do not have the refund forthcoming after your filing date.  This way, you are able to protect your refund from the long arm of the Chapter 7 trustee.  This video talks about the importance of timing as it relates to tax refunds.  Jesse Barrientes: Right now we are in the end of January here.  So taxes are kind of going to be fresh, a lot of people have kind of filed because they want to get their money if they are getting a refund and if you have to pay, then people wait till + Read More

What Happens To City Violations After Filing For a Chicago Bankruptcy?

Chicago Bankruptcy  City violations in Chicago, incurred after filing for a Chicago bankruptcy are not eliminated. One such example is where someone who surrenders a home in foreclosure yet owes city violations and then files chapter 7, the debt to the city is not wiped out. You would think that once you give up a home in foreclosure, that you would no longer be responsible for any debt associated with the property. However, in a case where the city has to demolish the property post-filing, there is a cost to the city for handling the demolition. Since the demolition technically occurs after the case is filed, the debtor is still on the hook for the cost of the demolition. I refer to + Read More

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