Filing for Bankruptcy in Kenosha and Racine County
Why You Need a Skilled Bankruptcy Lawyer
No one wants to file for bankruptcy. It is a last resort and an incredibly stressful process. Perhaps one of the only assurances during this trying time is the presence of an experienced, dependable, and resourceful bankruptcy lawyer.
Bankruptcy is designed to relieve or restructure debt for individuals or businesses. Without a skilled bankruptcy lawyer, the debt may instead continue to grow. Filing for bankruptcy can affect your credit score for up to ten years, meaning an experienced bankruptcy lawyer is required to ensure you’re making the right decision in pursuing bankruptcy.
There are many reasons to file for bankruptcy. Perhaps a divorce has left you without a fixed income, or you have experienced medical problems that have resulted in a growing number of bills. Bankruptcy is a way to handle those financial woes and potentially avoid more drastic fiscal disasters such as property foreclosure.
Each bankruptcy case is unique. What works for one individual might not apply to all. In particular, this article will look at the differences between filing for Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the liquidation of assets, excluding certain exempt items, in order to pay off creditors. In many cases, all of a debtor’s assets will be exempt from liquidation. To qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, individuals must first earn less than the median income for a household of their size in their state of residence (Wisconsin). If you make more than the median income you will have to pass a means test. The means test determines whether there is enough disposable income, after paying certain allowable monthly expenses, to pay towards unsecured debts.
Having too much disposable income, as determined by the means test, will render the filer ineligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Filing for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is also for individuals, but unlike Chapter 7 bankruptcy, it involves the repayment of some debts. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy consists of a repayment plan that must be approved by the bankruptcy court. The plan can cover 3 to 5 years of repayment and all disposable income goes towards paying off the agreed upon debt.
To be eligible for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you cannot have discharged debt in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy within the past 4 years or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy within the past 2 years. Individuals may not have more than $383,175 in unsecured debts or $1,149,525 in secured loans. Further, individuals in Kenosha and Racine must be earning a regular income at the time of filing.
Every bankruptcy case is unique, and requires legal advice specific to your situation. Contact our Kenosha and Racine Bankruptcy Attorney for more information and to learn if filing bankruptcy is ideal in your case.
Compassionate Lawyers in Kenosha and Racine Counties Fighting for Your Best Interest
At the law office of Renee E. Mura, S.C., Betheny M. Dillhoff is a dedicated bankruptcy attorney practicing with the highest understanding of the law. She will consult with you to determine if you are eligible for bankruptcy as outlined above. If bankruptcy is the right choice for you, Attorney Dillhoff will handle all of the details and help you understand the specifics and laws surrounding your case.