Five Things You Should Know Before Filing Bankruptcy

One of the most common sources of stress, anxiety, and depression in the United States is financial strains. If you’re in debt, you know how crippling it can be, affecting your life in unanticipated ways. Large amounts of debt can make it impossible to find decent housing, maintain your car properly, or take care of other obligations. It can feel like you’re drowning and struggling to stay afloat with no sign of relief in sight. Not knowing where you turn can make debt seem inescapable, but you do have options out there.

If you are considering filing for bankruptcy for debt relief, here are five things you need to know first. 

Understanding Different Types of Bankruptcy 

For the average person, debt solutions in Delray Beach are a foreign language. Bankruptcy laws are full of confusing language that make them difficult to understand without legal experience. Hiring a bankruptcy lawyer in Delray Beach can help you navigate and understand your options. 

The primary options for most people filing personal bankruptcy claims are Chapter 7 bankruptcy and chapter 13 bankruptcy.  

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy 

Also known as liquidation bankruptcy, filing under chapter 7 means that you are unable to make minimum payments on your debts to become debt-free. As the name suggests, this form of bankruptcy requires the liquidation of all assets to settle debts. However, it does give one the option to halt harassing phone calls and foreclosure proceedings, forcing creditors to accept the terms of your settlement. Once a discharge has been issued by the courts, you can then focus on rebuilding your credit. 

It should be noted, however, that not everyone qualifies for chapter 7 bankruptcy. If your debts are over a certain amount or you belong to a higher tax bracket, you may not qualify. Contact the Law Offices of John E. Mufson for more information today!  

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy 

The “reorganization” option for bankruptcy, chapter 13 is a form of consolidation and repayment plan. With a more affordable three to five-year payment schedule, this bankruptcy option offers debt relief without completely surrendering everything. Just as with chapter 7 bankruptcy filing, this option stops harassing phone calls and threats of repossession or foreclosure. Additionally, making your payments regularly and on time helps to build your credit as you pay off the debts. Once you’ve successfully paid off the agreed upon amount, your remaining debts will be dismissed. 

Consequences of Bankruptcy 

Filing bankruptcy isn’t a get out of jail free card. If you choose to liquidate, it will wipe out your good credit as well as bad. Bankruptcy filing also remains on your credit history for up to 10 years, which can affect things like trying to buy a home or car down the line. Having a bankruptcy on your credit history may also affect your chances of approval and interest rates on loans, ability to find an apartment, and other financial transactions. 

 What Bankruptcy Doesn’t Cover 

Not all debts qualify for dismissal through bankruptcy. If you owe child support or back taxes, bankruptcy will not remove these debts. Seeking other debt programs in Delray Beach can help you manage these expenses. The Law Offices of John E. Mufson can guide you through your options. 

Bankruptcy is on Public Record 

If you decide to file for bankruptcy, you should know that information will be available through public records. Not only will potential loan companies, realtors, and car dealerships be able to find the information, but others may be able to find it as well. If this is a concern for you, consider other debt solutions available to you. 

Creditors Can Challenge Your Request 

Filing bankruptcy is not a guaranteed solution. If you owe significant amounts to lienholders or other lenders, they can challenge your bankruptcy correct. A bankruptcy lawyer in Delray Beach can help you navigate the court process should a company decide to challenge your filing. At the Law Offices of John E. Mufson, we are well versed in bankruptcy law and fully capable of helping you make the best decision for your specific situation. 

For more information about how we can help you, contact us now! 



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