Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is one option that individuals have when trying to deal with overwhelming debt. To ensure you make the right decision for your financial needs, hiring a skilled bankruptcy attorney is key. With an attorney by your side, you can go over the paperwork and fully understand what you are filing and what the outcome will be. Below are a few questions to ask a bankruptcy attorney to ensure you hire the right professional to assist with your filing needs.
Are You Experienced in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
One way in which an individual can file for bankruptcy is with the Chapter 7 option. An attorney experienced in this sector will know how to review your records, including the debt to income ratio that you currently have. You must qualify for this type of filing to move forward. A bankruptcy attorney who specializes in Chapter 7 will be able to help you make the best move for your financial needs.
Who Can File Under Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
An experienced bankruptcy attorney will be able to tell you who can file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. A person who resides in the United States can make this filing. The only reason an individual cannot file in this sector is if they have been involved in another bankruptcy case that was dismissed within a 180-day time frame based on certain grounds.
It is not smart to file under Chapter 7 if you do not qualify or if some debt will not be released via the Chapter 7 discharge. An experienced attorney will be able to help you determine if Chapter 7 is the best option for you to work on resolving the overwhelming debt.
Will I Lose All Property Under a Chapter 7 Filing?
Based on state and federal law, certain property is deemed exempt and cannot be taken from the creditors of the individual. The exception is those who have a valid mortgage on exempt property. An individual can keep an unmortgaged exempt property and turn in only the nonexempt property to the trustee involved in the case.
What About Court Proceedings?
When it comes to filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you will need to appear in court. As you hire a bankruptcy attorney, you want to work with an experienced individual so they can help you with the court process. The first appearance in court will occur about a month after your case has been filed. A hearing will take place which is known as the meeting of creditors.
The debtor, meaning you, will be put under oath and questioned about the debt, money, and property owned. In most cases, the creditors will not be in the courtroom. However, they may be present but are not allowed to question you.
After this meeting, the trustee may contact you regarding collection or any nonexempt property. You may then be issued orders by the court. Such orders can include turning over property or providing more information.
If you have more questions about Chapter 7 bankruptcy, contact Hoard Law, P.C, at 704-954-8094 to set up a consultation.