Every marriage is not meant to last forever. No matter what the reasoning behind the divorce, it is important to have legal representation for each side. I almost lost everything because my former spouse said that he was taking care of things and that he would be fair about how the assets were divided. It took several weeks for me to find out what he was up to. It was then that I hired my own attorney and got what I deserved. You should never attempt to go through a divorce without a lawyer working on your side. On my site, I have listed several of the issues that can get overlooked if you are inexperienced with divorce documents and proceedings.
Have you been told that you are unlikely to qualify for Chapter 7, or liquidation, bankruptcy? While Chapter 7 is the fastest resolution to debt problems through bankruptcy, don't give up if you can't take advantage of it. Chapter 13, or repayment plan, bankruptcy has a lot to offer you. Here are five of these benefits and how they help you.
1. The Automatic Stay. A bankruptcy case includes what's known as the automatic stay. This is a court order which halts all collection activity against qualifying debt. This prevents creditors from suing you, enforcing garnishments, repossessing, and foreclosing. Although some individual orders may be lifted, the majority of this stay remains in effect until the case is completed.
2. More Asset Protection. Debtors can exempt some assets during Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Some, like retirement accounts, are largely exempt. Others, like the equity in cars and homes, are limited to a dollar threshold. However, when you file Chapter 13, you can keep more secured assets than most can with Chapter 7. The process of reaffirming a debt means that you can often keep the asset if you can meet certain conditions.
3. Ethical Repayment. Are you hesitant to file bankruptcy because you don't feel right not paying back your debts? Chapter 13 helps minimize this ethical concern because more debts are paid over time than under the terms of one-time liquidation.
4. Longer Payment Terms. The repayment plan for Chapter 13 is generally for just a few years. A filer who opts for the longer time frame may have to spend a little more time dealing with the open case, but they can significantly reduce their monthly burden. Even debts that originally were for a much shorter term can be stretched out.
5. Eventual Discharge. What happens at the end of your repayment plan? If you meet the terms of the bankruptcy trustee and complete the case, it includes the discharge of the remaining unsecured debt. This may still be a significant portion of your debt depending on how much you started with. Or it could be a smaller amount. Either way, you can achieve permanent discharge with tax consequences.
Where to Learn More
Could these positive aspects of Chapter 13 bankruptcy help you even if you can't get immediate liquidation? If you think so, start by learning more about how it works and how it would affect your particular debts. Call a Chapter 13 bankruptcy attorney in your state today to find answers to your questions.