Bankruptcy – Is It Right for You?
5 Questions To Consider When You’re Considering Bankruptcy
The first question you ask when it comes to bankruptcy should perhaps be the last. Making the decision to file for bankruptcy protection is difficult, but all too often the question we ask a bankruptcy lawyer is whether it’s the right choice before looking at the big picture.
Our finances, no matter how simple we perceive them to be, are like a high-tech sound system: it looks neat when viewing the setup head-on, but look behind the machines and you’ll see a tangle of cords and wires that reveals the true complexity. Taking a look at your bigger picture will help you decide whether it’s a good idea for you to file bankruptcy. Here are some things to answer first.
1. Am I Broke, Or Am I Bankrupt? If you’re not currently paying your bills, BK could free up cash to make ends meet. Bankruptcy allows you to reorganize your finances, discharging obligations or restructuring them. Take a look at how bankruptcy will impact your cash flow on a monthly basis.
2. Can I Pay My Debts? I usually tell people that if you can’t pay your debts when they are due (on time) then you are insolvent. If you are insolvent you may qualify for BK relief. You may qualify for BK relief under several chapters including Chapter 7, Chapter 11, or Chapter 13. These chapters work in different ways and we can explain them to you when you come to our office.
3. Can I Protect My Property? In Chapter 7 BK, you get to keep some property but must surrender items that can’t be protected under a variety of laws. If you’re going to lose property in Chapter 7, you may want to look into Chapter 11 and Chapter 13 and find out if you qualify.
4. What’s My Goal? You can wipe out certain types of debts in a BK case, but others will survive the discharge. Talking with a Tempe bankruptcy lawyer about the types of debt you have and how they will be impacted by a bankruptcy discharge is going to help answer this question.
5. Do I Want To Shed The Excess? Maybe you’ve got a car you can’t afford anymore. Perhaps that house has turned into more of a burden than a benefit. Filing bankruptcy may give you the opportunity to return the property and end your payment obligations to the lender. If that sounds good to you, bankruptcy may be a viable option.
Once you begin digging, you may find other questions to answer before making your decision on whether to file for bankruptcy. These are usually the ones I use to begin a conversation with my clients to understand the unique desires and situations of each client.
To find out if filing bankruptcy is the right decision for you, talk with our Tempe bankruptcy lawyer. I offer free bankruptcy consultations, but you must call to schedule.
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