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You can still fit into a Chapter 7 if you don’t meet all of these conditions, but we will have to work a little harder to squeeze you into Chapter 7. We feel that Chapter 7 offers the most complete form of bankruptcy relief so if you can fit into a Chapter 7, you should go with this option.
If you think that bankruptcy is even a remote possibility, feel free to call our office at 770-393-4985 and speak to Susan or Jonathan about mistakes to avoid specific to your situation.
Our office will provide you with a printout from the electronic filing process to document your filing so you will have proof of bankruptcy protection should anyone call or otherwise contact you. Your attorney will also contact by phone or email any lender, law firm or collection agency that may be contacting you and we will stop any collection calls or pending creditor action (including foreclosures or repossessions). Any creditor who ignores actual notice of filing may be liable to you for money damages for violation of the automatic stay.
Every so often we will file a case where an issue does arise. Most often the problems we see involve pre-filing borrowing or use of credit by our clients. If you incur debt within 6 months to 1 year prior to filing and there is no “reasonable expectation of repayment” then your creditor(s) may ask the judge to rule that some or all of the debt owed to that creditor be deemed non-dischargeable and survive your bankruptcy. If such an objection occurs in your case, we can either negotiate a compromise or litigate the issue before the judge.
Less often we see objections by the trustee arising from pre-bankruptcy transfers of property, or issues related to the value of property. Here, too, we can negotiate a settlement or litigate.
Finally, in very rare circumstances, the trustee or a creditor may object on the grounds that important and relevant information was not disclosed, such as an interest in real estate or jewelry, or an interest in a bank account or other asset. Needless to say, our law firm will not knowingly mislead the court and we encourage our clients to make full and completely disclosures to us so we can offer the best possible advice.
Interestingly, while your bankruptcy is filed in a federal court, the exemption rules that apply in your case are set out under Georgia law. Prior to filing, we will carefully evaluate your list of assets to confirm that this property falls within the exemption rules.
In the rare circumstance where you may own property that is not exempt, we can advise you about various options, including selling non-exempt property prior to filing, negotiating a buy out with the trustee and other possibilities.
Creditors are allowed to appear and ask questions, but our experience has been that creditors or their lawyers only show up about 10% of the time.
You will be asked to show two forms of ID and you will be asked to swear under penalty of perjury that all the information in your petition is correct. The trustee will ask you a series of questions (we will prepare you ahead of time) and assuming no significant changes in your financial profile, you will be excused.
We recommend that you arrive at the hearing room 30 minutes early to observe several hearings prior to yours.
A reaffirmation agreement is the contract by which you renew your obligation and continue to fulfil your obligations under the original loan contract.
As your Chapter 7 lawyers, we will advise you about the pros and cons of entering into a reaffirmation agreement. In some cases, it is possible to continue making payments and not enter a reaffirmation, while in other cases, reaffirmation or another option called “redemption” makes sense.
Generally, if you reaffirm a debt, your future payments will positively impact your credit, but if you continue paying without a reaffirmation, your credit reports will not reflect your on-time payments.
With over 35 years of combined experience, Susan and Jonathan have seen and handled just about any type of crisis or problem in Chapter 7 cases and we stand ready to guide you if your budget changes during your Chapter 7.
If you left off a secured creditor (such as a mortgage lender, car finance company) it is likely that this creditor will not be subject to your bankruptcy discharge. If you intentionally left off a creditor, that creditor might have the right to force a reopening of your case, which could lead to a variety of problems.
The bottom line here is that is you left off a creditor, let your attorney know as soon as possible so that we can advise you how to best proceed.
Our experience has been that it takes most people about 6 months to 1 year after discharge before credit card lenders and others will extend credit. In many ways you are a better credit risk after bankruptcy because you have little or no debt and you are not eligible to file another bankruptcy for up to 8 years.
Consultations are always 100% FREE & 100% CONFIDENTIAL. Call Ginsberg Law now at 770-393-4985
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Office location: 1854 Independence Square, Atlanta, GA 30338
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