How Does Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Work?
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a “liquidation” or “straight” bankruptcy because it discharges debt and gives you a fresh start.
You may be considering chapter 7 bankruptcy if you have been sued, your wages are being garnished, or you have too much credit card debt. In most chapter 7 cases creditors do not get paid any money and the debtor keeps his property and discharges his debts.
Our Long Beach law firm helps individuals and business file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and get a financial fresh start.
Do I Qualify For Chapter 7?
To qualify for chapter 7 bankruptcy you must pass the means test. The means test is based on your personal and financial circumstances and is used to determine if you can afford to repay some of your creditors in chapter 13.
It is critical that you claim all available expenses on the means test. We offer free means testing with an experienced chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney.
How Long Does A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Take?
If all of your property is exempt, a typical chapter 7 bankruptcy takes between 4 and 6 months from the date of filing to the date of entry of discharge.
What Is The Automatic Stay And How Long Does It Last?
The automatic stay is an injunction that prohibits creditors from suing you, or repossessing your property to collect a debt.
The stay stops foreclosure, repossession, lawsuits, wage garnishments, bank levies, liens, and creditors from calling and harassing you. Actions taken in violation of the stay are void, and if a creditor willfully violates the stay they may be ordered to pay you money. The stay remains in effect until the case is closed, property is abandoned, or the court orders the stay lifted, conditioned or modified.
When Is The Meeting Of Creditors?
What Happens At The Meeting Of Creditors?
At the meeting of creditors a lawyer called the “bankruptcy trustee” asks you questions about your bankruptcy documents filed with the court and your financial affairs. The chapter 7 trustee’s job is to maximize the benefit to creditors. Your testimony at the meeting is under oath and recorded, so it is very important to always tell the truth. The penalties for bankruptcy fraud are stiff!
When Are Debts Discharged In Chapter 7?
If no creditors object to discharge, and there are no assets to be administered by the trustee, the court will grant a chapter 7 discharge after the time for objections has expired.
Can A Creditor Cancel My Bankruptcy?
Creditors cannot cancel your bankruptcy, but they can object to you receiving a discharge. Objections to discharge must be filed within 60 days of the date first set for the meeting of creditors. If an objection is made, the court holds a hearing to determine the validity of the objection.
What Debts Are Discharged In Chapter 7?
Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharges most debts, but there are some debts that cannot be discharged in bankruptcy.
Contact our Long Beach bankruptcy law firm today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation (562) 479-0939.