Filing for Bankruptcy in Norfolk, Massachusetts
Filing for bankruptcy can be the ideal way of handling your financial issues. If you are considering filing for bankruptcy in Norfolk, Massachusetts, the first step is determining which type of bankruptcy is right for you. There are several options available, but most people will need to file either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy unless they are filing for a business they own. Understanding the differences between these two options is important, especially in regard to how each deals with debt. To help you determine what type of bankruptcy is right for you, Contact a qualified bankruptcy lawyer in Norfolk MA.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Chapter 7 bankruptcy involves liquidating your assets in order to pay off your debts. This means you will have to sell any assets that are not considered exempt. Your exempt property typically may include your home (if you are not behind on your mortgage), your primary vehicles, your clothing, and other necessities. However, it may not include expensive unnecessary electronics, vehicles such as boats or RVs, or other items that you do not need in order to live or work. The court will appoint a trustee to oversee the sale of these items.
However, before you can file for Chapter 7, you must pass the means test. This test looks at your disposable income and other assets to determine if you qualify for Chapter 7. If you make too much money, you will not be able to use Chapter 7. If you do pass the means test, your unsecured debts will be discharged, with each creditor making arrangements with the appointed trustee to accept a specific amount of money. Note that some debts, including mortgages and student loans, cannot be discharged.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Chapter 13 does not have a means test, though there is a limit to how much unsecured and secured debt you may have. You are also allowed to keep all of your property. However, your debts are not discharged through Chapter 13. Instead, they are reorganized. You will work with the court and your creditors to create a repayment plan. Often, creditors will accept less than what you owe as long as you make the payments you agree to. Once your repayment plan is complete, the remaining debt is discharged. Typically, these plans are between three and five years long.
Note again that, like Chapter 7, Chapter 13 does not prevent your home from being foreclosed upon or your property being repossessed if you do not catch up with your payments. While your repayment plan will include missed payments, it does not replace your current monthly payments. If you fall behind again, you can expect the mortgage company or other lender to take action against you.
Need Legal Assistance with Your Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy is typically seen in a negative light, but if used correctly, it can help you recover financially and get back on the right path. However, you should enter into bankruptcy with a full understanding of how it will affect you and your future. If you are ready to discuss filing for bankruptcy, we are here to help.
To speak with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer in Norfolk MA, Contact the Law Office of Rachel M. Matos Today!
Schedule a Consultation. 508-386-9094.