Lexington, KY Chapter 7 Lawyer
Times are tough all over. If you’re in a really tough financial position, you may need a Lexington, KY Chapter 7 lawyer. When prices are rising and your income is not keeping pace, it is easy to rack up credit card balances and other debts.
Are you, your family or small business in dire straits? If your debt load seems overwhelming, relief through a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing may be a viable option and a way to make a fresh start.
For more than 30 years, the Kentucky Chapter 7 lawyers at the Bunch & Brock Law Firm in Lexington, Kentucky, have helped clients who are overcome by financial problems. Attorneys at our firm take a personalized approach to both you and your situation, helping to determine whether filing for Chapter 7 is the right choice.
What is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
Chapter 7 is the most common form of bankruptcy protection for individuals. Also utilized by small business owners, Chapter 7 is known as “liquidation bankruptcy.” When you file for Chapter 7, a portion of your property may be liquidated – or sold — to pay down your debt. Following the sale of your property (and the use of those proceeds to pay secured debt), most or all of your unsecured debts will be discharged.
You may be allowed to retain possession of any property classified as “exempt” under bankruptcy laws: these assets can include clothing, cars, equipment used for work (like tools) and household furnishings. If you do not own a great deal of property, your possessions may all be exempt, qualifying you for a “no asset” case.
Am I Eligible for Chapter 7?
Not everyone in Kentucky is eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection. Your income and debt will be subjected to something called a “means test” to determine whether you qualify. Chapter 7 is generally for people whose total income is below the median in Kentucky; but, if your income is higher, you may still qualify if your basic monthly expenses are exceptionally high.
If you are not eligible for Chapter 7, filing for Chapter 13 may be an option. Chapter 13 “reorganization” bankruptcy helps you repay a portion of your debt and allows you to keep most of your assets, including your home.
Get Help from a Kentucky Chapter 7 Attorney
To discuss your options for debt relief, contact Bunch & Brock today.
Will Filing for Bankruptcy Erase My Debts?
Our bankruptcy lawyers for Chapter 7 often hear this question. Filing for bankruptcy does not discharge all debt; it can eliminate credit card debt, medical bills and unsecured loans, though. You will remain responsible for other debts including child support, spousal support obligations, student loans and most unpaid taxes.
Why Is Chapter 7 Called a “Fresh Start” Bankruptcy?
It is easy to get caught in a whirlpool of debt that seems to increase every month, leaving you overwhelmed and underwater. Chapter 7 is often referred to as a “fresh start” because the process puts an end to fees, penalties and bounced checks, while halting creditor harassment and pending lawsuits. Chapter 7 releases unpaid debt and allows you a chance to regroup and start over, hopefully wiser from past mistakes and ready for a successful new beginning.
How Does Liquidation Work and How Would it Impact Me?
When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a Trustee is assigned to your case. The Trustee will determine which of your assets are exempt from bankruptcy liquidation and which can be sold to pay down your debts. Nonexempt property will then be collected and sold, with the proceeds distributed to unsecured creditors. Once the money is gone, any remaining debts are permanently discharged.
In many cases, liquidation does not have a significant impact. Federal and state exemptions protect most of your property from the liquidation process and you may end up losing very little (if anything).
Tip from a Kentucky Chapter 7 Lawyer: What Not to Do Before Bankruptcy
Don’t Wait too Long
If you think you might be heading for bankruptcy, it’s best to avoid delaying the inevitable.
Many people make the mistake of waiting too long, until many of their assets and resources are depleted.
The fact is, you can often protect the property you have, including retirement funds, through bankruptcy assistance.
Don’t File for Divorce Until After the Proceeding
You should also avoid filing for divorce, if possible, before you enter bankruptcy proceedings. To prevent unnecessary complications and losses, it is best to wait until bankruptcy is complete before moving forward with a marital dissolution.
Don’t Take on New Debt
If you think you might file for bankruptcy within a few months, don’t make the mistake of taking on new debt for non-necessities. Excessive charges and new loans may be looked upon as fraudulent in nature, and you may lose the bankruptcy protection option. Similarly, do not attempt to transfer or hide assets pre-bankruptcy, as this can lead to a dismissal and even criminal charges.
Contact a Kentucky Chapter 7 Lawyer at Bunch & Brock
The longer you wait to explore your bankruptcy options, the more stress and worry you will endure. In many cases, the attorneys at Bunch & Brock can offer immediate relief and renewed optimism for a successful future. Contact Bunch & Brock today to learn about your options for a fresh financial start. Our Kentucky Chapter 7 lawyers are here to help you move forward with your life.