Frequently Asked Questions About Bankruptcy
When you struggle with debt, you may face a wide variety of questions. How long will you struggle with debt? Is it possible to stop the calls from creditors? How can you move forward to a stronger financial future?
Based in Wetumpka, Courtney & Mann, LLP, offers more than two decades of bankruptcy law experience. Our attorneys can guide you through your options and ensure that you have answers to these questions and more.
What is the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy?
There are exceptions but generally, Chapter 7 cases are for people who want to dispose of all of their debt, but they don’t own much property or they don’t have much equity in the property that they do own and they are caught up on the payments on the property they want to keep. Also, Chapter 7 cases are for people who simply want to give up certain property and dispose of all of their debts. Chapter 13 cases are generally for people who either have a lot of equity in property that they want to keep, or they are behind on property they want to keep and may be trying to avoid a foreclosure or repossession. In Chapter 13 cases you propose a plan to the court where you make affordable monthly payments to catch up on anything you want to keep and in most instances pay only a portion of the debt you may owe to your unsecured creditors. Both types of Bankruptcy may allow you to either keep or surrender certain property and dispose of certain debts, but the type you actually file depends on your personal circumstances and certain eligibility requirements.
Should I use my retirement savings to pay for my debts?
You may be tempted to use your retirement savings to pay off your debts rather than going through the bankruptcy process, but this can significantly impact your financial health in the future. Creditors generally can’t take your retirement savings, so you may be able to preserve those investments throughout the bankruptcy process.
Will I lose my house if I file for bankruptcy?
While many people may worry that they will lose their home or other important assets, many people are able to keep their home as long as they can keep up with mortgage payments.
Will bankruptcy stop calls from bill collectors?
Absolutely. Your creditors must work through the court once the bankruptcy process begins. This will stop calls from lenders as well as other actions like foreclosure or utility lawsuits.