Many of our personal bankruptcy clients come to us when they are in the middle of a crisis. They have been injured in an accident, have lost their job, have more bills than they can pay, or are facing a foreclosure.
The bankruptcy lawyers at Farmer & Wright, PLLC, can help clients take back control of their finances and help put them on the road to financial recovery. We are a debt relief agency, experienced in helping clients gain control of their finances.
Filing Bankruptcy: Frequently Asked Questions
Can a bankruptcy stop a wage garnishment or foreclosure?
Yes! The filing of a personal bankruptcy case will stop a wage garnishment or vehicle repossession immediately. Filing a bankruptcy case can also stop a home foreclosure.
When you file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, an automatic stay goes into place. The automatic stay will stop all collection actions being taken against you, including wage garnishment. Instead, the debt that wage garnishment is working to collect will be managed through your bankruptcy.
One exception is when your wage garnishment is the result of a domestic support obligation. Past due child support and alimony will continue to be taken out of your wages through garnishment. Further, bankruptcy cannot discharge past due domestic support. However, your personal bankruptcy lawyer may be able to get the obligation creditor of your domestic support obligation to voluntarily suspend your wage garnishment while you handle your debts through bankruptcy.
Talk to a personal bankruptcy lawyer to find out of your wage garnishment can be stopped or suspended while you file bankruptcy. You may be able to manage those debts through your bankruptcy in a discharge or payment plan, depending on the type of bankruptcy you file.
What are the benefits of bankruptcy?
There are many benefits of bankruptcy, some of which differ depending on the type of bankruptcy you file. Filing bankruptcy can stop a home foreclosure, car repossession, wage garnishment and harassing calls from creditors. The biggest benefit is that you can eliminate most or all of your debt and start over. If you are faced with difficult legal issues due to your debt, a bankruptcy can provide you with relief.
How can I stop foreclosure?
A Chapter 13 bankruptcy can help individuals catch up on delinquent house payments and can even stop a foreclosure. Our bankruptcy lawyers can help you determine if this is the best option for you. We will walk you through the process and develop a strategy to help you get back on track financially.
Chapter 7 can also pause a foreclosure during an automatic stay. This may give you time to catch up on payments or renegotiate the terms of your mortgage with your creditor. A personal bankruptcy lawyer can help you with your bankruptcy as well as negotiations with your creditor. Your lender will likely have a lawyer on their side to represent them, so you deserve someone protecting your rights as well.
What if I’m behind on my taxes?
Often our clients’ financial problems are due to tax issues. If these tax issues are not dealt with quickly the IRS could file a lien against your home or garnish your wages. The attorneys at Farmer & Wright, PLLC, can help. In many cases, we have helped our clients settle their tax debts for amounts significantly less than the amount owed. We have represented numerous clients with the IRS. It’s important for a client to know their rights when dealing with the IRS or the state taxing authorities. Contact our Paducah bankruptcy lawyers to find out if bankruptcy is the best solution for you.
If you file Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you will continue to owe most of your past due taxes at the end of your bankruptcy. However, there are exceptions in which your tax debt can be discharged. If your tax debt has the following characteristics, then it may be dischargeable:
- It is related to income taxes.
- You did not willfully evade your taxes.
- You did not submit a fraudulent tax return.
- It is three years old or older.
- You actually filed a tax return regarding the debt.
- Your tax debt was assessed by the IRS more than 240 days prior to your bankruptcy or it was never assessed.
If you file Chapter 13 bankruptcy, your tax debt may be included in your three- to five-year payment plan. If your tax debt meets all of the requirements of dischargeable tax debt, then it may be discharged if you do not pay all of it over the course of your payment plan. However, in most cases it will be paid through the payment plan.
A personal bankruptcy lawyer can evaluate your taxes and help you understand your legal options. You may decide which type of bankruptcy to file based on the status of your tax debt. An attorney can help you make that decision strategically.
How often can I file bankruptcy?
The bankruptcy code allows debtors to file bankruptcy more than once. We have had many clients who have had to seek protection under the bankruptcy code more than once. The rules governing multiple filings are very complicated. Always seek the advice of counsel when considering filing bankruptcy.
How often you may file bankruptcy depends on which type you filed in the past and which type you intend to file now. If you filed:
- Chapter 7 and intend to file another Chapter 7, then you must wait eight years between bankruptcies.
- Chapter 13 and you intend to file another Chapter 13, then you must wait two years after the first case was filed.
- A Chapter 7 and intend on filing a Chapter 13, then you must wait four years from the date you filed the Chapter 7.
- A Chapter 13 and you intend on filing a Chapter 7, then you must wait six years from the date you filed the Chapter 13. However, there is an exception to the six-year rule if you repaid all unsecured debts or at least 70 percent of your unsecured debt and the plan was in good faith.
Additionally, if you filed a bankruptcy and later dismissed it, then you may be able to refile your bankruptcy again. However, if you file and refile bankruptcies multiple times, then it can impact your automatic stay. Your automatic stay may be reduced in time or eliminated altogether, especially if it appears you are simply using bankruptcies to get automatic stays on creditor actions.
Will I lose my home or car?
In most cases, with guidance from our bankruptcy lawyers, our clients are able to keep their home and their vehicles. In most cases, clients are able to keep all of their personal property. With a Chapter 7, some of your property will be sold to pay your creditors. However, your home and car may be exempt. In some situations, we can even renegotiate your payment terms with your lenders. With Chapter 13, your debt will likely be put into your payment plan so you can retain your property while managing your debt.
Contact a Personal Bankruptcy Lawyer Today
Bankruptcy can be extremely complicated, and you likely have many questions about your personal bankruptcy. Farmer & Wright, PLLC can give you answers and help you understand your options through Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. Call a personal bankruptcy lawyer today for more information.