Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Filings for New York and New Jersey
The Silverberg Law Firm LLC can help you file an individual Chapter 7 bankruptcy case or a business Chapter 7 case. Chapter 7 protection offers you a way to eliminate debts you cannot pay without losing all your property to creditors.
Filing a Chapter 7 case does not mean you are a bad person who does not want to pay your debts. It simply means that you are taking control of your finances and requesting a fresh start, which is the purpose of filing for bankruptcy relief.
Learn more about Chapter 7 bankruptcy filings and how a Chapter 7 case can help you put an end to your financial struggles during a free consultation with a NJ & NY chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney.
What Happens in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case?
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a liquidation bankruptcy action. When a person files for Chapter 7 relief, a bankruptcy trustee analyzes the person’s bankruptcy filing to determine if the person owns property that can be liquidated to pay the person’s unsecured debts.
Bankruptcy exemptions protect your property!
However, bankruptcy exemptions protect some of the equity in certain pieces of property from the trustee and the creditors. The good news is that most of the Chapter 7 cases filed in New Jersey and New York are no-asset cases. Individuals in a no-asset Chapter 7 case keep all their property.
Our bankruptcy lawyer carefully analyzes your property and applies all available bankruptcy exemptions to protect as much of the equity in your property as possible. If the bankruptcy exemptions do not cover all equity in a piece of property, we help you protect what matters most to you and search for ways to minimize the loss.
Businesses and Chapter 7
Businesses that file for Chapter 7 are liquidated. In other words, a Chapter 7 filing for a business is the end of the business.
What Debts are Dischargeable in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case?
Most unsecured debts are eligible for a discharge under Chapter 7. Examples of debts that you can get rid of in Chapter 7 include:
Alimony, child support, restitution, and most debts owed to the government are not discharged in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case.
Student loans and personal taxes are typically not dischargeable in Chapter 7. Some older tax debt may qualify for a discharge. In a few cases, a person might qualify for a hardship discharge for their student debt, but it is rare.
Secured debts may be discharged through the Chapter 7 case, but the lien on the collateral that secures the debt is not voided.
Therefore, if you want to give up a car or home that you owe more money on than the property is worth, you can surrender the property in Chapter 7. You are not required to pay any more money to the secured creditor, even if the sale of the property does not satisfy the loan in full. However, if you want to keep your car and home, you must continue paying the loan payments on time.
Do I Qualify for a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case?
You may have heard that you cannot make a lot of money and file for debt relief under Chapter 7. That statement is partially true.
Congress revised the bankruptcy laws in 2005. With the revisions, they added a Means Test. The Means Test measures your average income against the average income of families of your size in your state. Your average income is based on your income for the six months prior to filing your Chapter 7 petition. You “pass” the Means Test and may proceed with your Chapter 7 case if your current income is lower than the state median income.
If you “fail” the Means Test, do not worry. The second section of the Means Test calculates your monthly disposable income. Your disposable income is the amount of money left over each month after you pay allowable living expenses. If your disposable income is low enough, you may still be eligible to file under Chapter 7.
There are also some special circumstances in which the Means Test may not apply. For example, if your debts are primarily business debts, you may qualify to file a Chapter 7 case even if your income is above the state median income. Likewise, if you are called to active military duty, the Means Test may not apply.
The Means Test is not something that you want to tackle alone. It is a complex bankruptcy form that can determine if you qualify to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. It is best to consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney in New Jersey or New York who can analyze your financial situation and use every potential expense to help you pass the Means Test.
Our Skilled Bankruptcy Attorney Can Help You Explore Chapter 7 In More Detail
Contact Silverberg Law Firm LLC Below for a free consultation to see if Chapter 7 is right for you.
At Silverberg Law Firm LLC our team will analyze your case and determine that whether bankruptcy is the right option for you. If yes, then we will handle every aspect of your legal process, start to finish.
Which will help you make the right choice, and get out of debt smoothly, and fast.
Meeting Locations Available Throughout North NJ by appointment Only