Experienced, Compassionate Legal Help With Debt Relief
Contrary to what you may have heard, there is no reason to feel ashamed for being in debt. Millions of Americans suffer from overwhelming debt – often due to medical emergencies and other circumstances beyond their control.
When other forms of debt relief are not available or appropriate, personal bankruptcy can be the best way to rid yourself of debt and get back on the road to financial health. A. Brooke Jennings, PC, is ready to help. For individuals, there are two common options for personal bankruptcy: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. We can help you determine which is right for you.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Focuses On Discharge Of Debts
When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your case could be finished within a number of months. This is because Chapter 7 bankruptcy focuses on discharging (forgiving) the majority of your unsecured debts (those without collateral). These include credit card balances, medical bills, utility bills, back rent payments, etc.
This is a huge opportunity to get a fresh start, but it does come with some trade-offs. When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy:
- Some of your assets may need to be sold to partially repay creditors.
- The bankruptcy stays on your credit report for 10 years, as opposed to seven years with Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
- Certain types of debt are not dischargeable, including student loans, child/spousal support payments and certain tax debts.
- You could end up losing your home and your car if both of these assets are not completely paid off. We can help you determine if this will apply to you.
The other thing you should know is that it is more difficult to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy than it is for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. You must take and pass what is known as a “means test,” which examines your income, ability to repay debts and other factors.
Chapter 13 Reorganization Bankruptcy
If you don’t qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, or don’t want to accept the trade-offs mentioned above, you can pursue Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which focuses on reorganizing your debts and paying them off over time.
With the help of a bankruptcy trustee, you will negotiate an affordable, consolidated repayment plan for nearly all of your debts to be completed over a three- to five-year period. This works because you are able to get rid of things like high interest rates and late fees. Moreover, you make just one payment per month to your trustee, who then distributes the funds to your creditors. Once the repayment period ends, creditors typically agree to forgive any remaining balances.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy certainly takes longer than Chapter 7 bankruptcy, but it does allow you to avoid losing assets such as your home and car, assuming you can become and stay current on payments. It also does less damage to your credit report and is easier to qualify for than Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Free Consultations Available – Contact Us To Discuss Your Legal Options
If you are struggling with overwhelming debt and want to better understand if bankruptcy is right for you, contact the office of A. Brooke Jennings, PC. We offer free initial consultations for potential bankruptcy clients. We are based in Augusta, Georgia, and serve clients throughout the surrounding area. We are happy to provide a translator upon request, and our receptionist is fluent in Spanish. Call 706-622-5955 or send us an email.
We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.