What Do You Need to Know About Filing for Bankruptcy?
If you have been struggling with personal debt or tax obligations for a long time, perhaps it’s time to consider your debt relief options, including bankruptcy. At CBG Law Group, PLLC, we have been helping individuals, families and business owners get a fresh start for many years. Attorney Darrel Carter has more than 20 years of hands-on experience in bankruptcy proceedings in courtrooms throughout Washington.
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Our firm wants to help you see a brighter financial future. We invite you to learn more about bankruptcy and alternatives to bankruptcy on this page. Contact us to schedule a consultation about your personal situation.
- Chapter 7 bankruptcy: When you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you are requiring your creditors to forgive your debts. With secured loans, such as a house, car or boat, your creditor will likely want to repossess the item, unless you “reaffirm” your willingness to continue making timely payments. Most people can keep their house or car, if it is the best option. Unsecured debt, such as credit card debt, is generally forgiven with no expectation that your creditor will recover the items purchased. Under Chapter 7, you MAY NOT include student loans and other government loans. Certain tax debt may also be included under specific conditions. Chapter 7 generally takes about five months to complete.
- Chapter 13 bankruptcy: If you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will be restructuring your debt into a lower, more affordable single monthly payment, supervised by the bankruptcy courts. You may include all of your debt into the restructured payment plan, including student loans, tax debt and other government loans. The repayment plan generally runs three to five years.
- Chapter 11 bankruptcy: This is generally reserved for businesses and individuals with excessive debts. It is a restructured payment plan worked out with the creditors and supervised by the bankruptcy courts.
There are many myths and misconceptions about bankruptcy. Here are some things your creditors don’t want you to know:
- You can usually keep your house and car
- You will generally qualify for credit relatively quickly after bankruptcy
- There are many bankruptcy exemptions that can be used to protect assets in Chapter 7, individual Chapter 11, and Chapter 13
Get the facts by talking to an experienced bankruptcy lawyer. You will have many decisions to make and you should consider the alternatives that would be best for you and your family. Every financial situation is different and no general rules apply to everyone. You may have uncollectible debt or may be able to make installment agreements or compromises without going through the formal bankruptcy process.
Let us help you make sense of your debt relief concerns. Contact us today. From our offices in Bellevue, we represent clients throughout the greater Seattle region.