To File Bankruptcy Or To Not File Bankruptcy?

Not An Easy Decision To File Bankruptcy

For many people filing bankruptcy is not an easy decision. Even though people struggle with debt for years and years, they are reluctant to actually pull the trigger on a bankruptcy filing. It could be due to pride. It could be due to the uncertainty of life after filing. It could be the fear of not getting future credit. It could be a combination of all these factors and more.

 Look At Your Total Financial Picture

When considering whether to file bankruptcy or not, one has to look inward at their overall financial picture to get an idea of whether or not it makes sense to file or not. If you are someone who has very little in the way of income and an insurmountable amount of debt, then filing bankruptcy is the only alternative to alleviate the situation. If on the other hand you have available income and you may be able to get yourself out of debt over a course of time without filing for bankruptcy, then it is probably best not to file.

 Are You Being Collected Upon?

There are a number of factors that go into whether or not you are in a position to file or not. For example, are you currently being garnished by a creditor who is taking 15% of your wages? Do you currently have bank accounts that are frozen and are making it difficult to pay your bills? Are you about to be evicted or foreclosed upon? Are you unable to function at work due to creditor harassment? Are you unable to provide for your family and are you frankly not being yourself when you get home after a long day? If the answer is yes, then you are someone who would benefit from either a chapter 7 bankruptcy or possibly a chapter 13 bankruptcy.

 Two Chapters To Choose From

Chapter 7 will provide for a complete elimination of dischargeable, unsecured debts. Most clients can also keep all of their personal property provided those values do not exceed the exemption amounts provided for under Illinois law. The other option is chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 13 will provide for a reorganization of either all or a portion of your debt over time. Just as in a chapter 7 case, individuals who file chapter 13 maintain all of their personal property provided they continue to make payments on secured creditors such as mortgages and vehicles.

 Take Time When Deciding

The decision to file should never be made quickly. It is something that should be considered over a period of time to determine whether or not it’s in your best interest. For the majority of clients who come to see me about a potential bankruptcy filing, most of them greatly benefit by the relief that’s available under title 11 of the United States Code which we know as the bankruptcy code. It is in rare instances whereby I advised someone that it probably is not a good idea to file. This is typically a case where someone is going to give up property in exchange for a fresh start. In those cases, there is often a better solution than a complete liquidation of the property in exchange for debt relief.

 Bankruptcy Filing Is Personal

Since bankruptcy is particular to the individual case and since bankruptcy law has become very complicated, I recommend that you meet with an experienced, bankruptcy attorney in your local area to learn your rights. I have offices in Chicago, wheeling, Waukegan, Aurora, Joliet, and Westchester. I handle all of Chicago and all of the surrounding counties of Chicago. For more information you can reach the office at 847-520-8100.

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