Filing for bankruptcy is overwhelming. Although the laws vary from state to state the general process is the same. If you are thinking about filing, obtaining a bankruptcy attorney is always a good idea. The bankruptcy attorneys at Hines Law have been helping clients near and beyond Framingham MA obtain debt relief with a high level of success for over 20 years.
Personal bankruptcy situations can be complicated and confusing, especially without an attorney.
When a person is drowning in debt and in severe financial straits, it is important to have an understanding of how a debt solution will work and if its right for your financial situation. Here is a brief explanation as to how the process of Chapter 7 personal bankruptcy works.
The Chapter 7 bankruptcy process takes from four to six months to complete. Depending on where you live and the complexity of your case, the cost varies. Prior to filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must receive credit counseling from an agency that has been approved by the United States Trustee’s Office.
Next, you will be spending most of your time completing and filling out forms. These include a bankruptcy petition, schedules that list financial information, forms that list your income and expenses and you will need to claim your property exemptions. You will then need to file your bankruptcy petition and show that you can pass the Chapter 7 means test.
Once you file your petition, the automatic stay goes into effect. This stops most of your creditors from collecting against you. A bankruptcy trustee is then assigned to administer your case. He will review your paperwork, look for inaccuracies and check for possible fraud.
Then you will have a meeting with the creditors. This meeting is when you have to answer questions about your petition and finances from the trustee and creditors, if they show up. It is usually a short meeting.
After the creditors meeting, there is a 60-day window in which the creditors or trustee can object to a discharge of any particular debt. If they do, they need to file a lawsuit in bankruptcy court. If there is no discharge filed within the 60 days, the court will issue an order to discharge your unsecured debts. There are debts such as taxes, child support and student loans that are non-dischargeable.
When and if your discharge is ordered, you no longer owe unsecured debts and your creditors have no legal right to collect from you. The automatic stay is lifted and your case will be closed. It’s time to start over and follow a new financial path.
You will find the lawyers at our legal practice, compassionate and skilled at understanding the realities common to debt relief. At Hines Law, we provide clear and practical advice so that our clients capture the best the legal system can offer. We look forward to completing the filing process and obtaining the discharge order, so that our clients can get a fresh start in life!