Rocklin, CA Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Lawyer
In a troubled economy, millions of Americans are struggling to pay off debt. Even in a prosperous community like Rocklin, life’s unexpected events, such as a serious illness or the loss of your job, can lead to financial difficulty. If you need help getting your debt under control, preventing foreclosure on your home, or stopping your car from being repossessed, Chapter 13 bankruptcy could be a potential solution. The experienced Rocklin Chapter 13 attorneys of The Bankruptcy Group can provide guidance about your financial options, protect your rights against creditors, and assist you with the Chapter 13 process in California.
At The Bankruptcy Group, we have many years of experience helping debtors file for Chapter 13 and other types of bankruptcy. We understand the complex bankruptcy laws that govern Chapter 13 proceedings in California, and are here to help you through every stage of the process. No matter what financial challenges you may be facing, our goal is to help you improve your financial health. For a free consultation about Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Rocklin, contact The Bankruptcy Group online, or call today at (800) 920-5351.
Why File Chapter 13?
Filing for bankruptcy can have many financial benefits for the individual filing, who is known as the “debtor” or “petitioner,” in reference to the bankruptcy “petition” he or she files with the bankruptcy court. The effects of bankruptcy depend on which type, or “chapter,” of bankruptcy the debtor files. Chapter 13, which is named for Chapter 13 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, is one of the most common and most frequently-used forms of bankruptcy. Chapter 13 can be utilized by individuals or small businesses.
One benefit of Chapter 13 is the “discharge,” or elimination, of debts. While some debts must be repaid in full, many can be wiped out after the debtor has paid a smaller portion. Examples of debts that can be discharged in Chapter 13 bankruptcy include medical debt, credit card debt, business debt, personal loan debt, utility bills, and potentially, income tax debts that meet specific criteria. Debtors should be advised that some debts cannot be discharged in Chapter 13, including debts that are related to alimony or spousal support, child support, and, in most cases, student loan debt.
In addition to the discharge of debts, Chapter 13 has another major benefit for petitioners who are homeowners: it gives debtors the chance to stop foreclosure by granting time to catch up on mortgage arrearages, or missed mortgage payments, while continuing to stay current on upcoming payments. If you are worried about the possibility of home foreclosure, you should discuss Chapter 13 with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer in Rocklin right away. Chapter 13 can also protect against vehicle repossession by allowing the debtor to make up missed auto loan payments.
How Does Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Work in California?
Before you may file for Chapter 13 in Rocklin, you must meet several requirements established by federal bankruptcy laws. For example, it is mandatory for all debtors to undergo credit counseling prior to filing.
You will also need to complete means testing to file for bankruptcy. The purpose of means testing is to determine whether a debtor has the financial resources that are necessary to file for Chapter 13. If the debtor does not have adequate financial resources, he or she may need to explore other bankruptcy possibilities, such as Chapter 7.
The reason for means testing is that Chapter 13 includes a reorganization plan or payment plan, whereas Chapter 7 does not. This plan lasts from three to five years. Therefore, Chapter 13 is more appropriate for debtors who have steady disposable income, while Chapter 7 is intended for debtors who lack the income or assets that are needed to complete Chapter 13 successfully. Though Chapter 13 requires debtors to repay certain debts in part or in full, the advantage of this arrangement is that it also allows debtors to keep their most valued possessions, including real estate, provided they comply with the terms of the plan.
If you complete your Chapter 13 reorganization plan and meet other requirements for completing your bankruptcy case, such as the pre-discharge debtor education requirement, you may receive a discharge, wiping out your remaining dischargeable debts. The Chapter 13 bankruptcy will remain on your credit history for a period of seven years before the information is removed. However, you can begin to rebuild your credit soon after filing.
Rocklin Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Attorneys Fighting Foreclosure
If you are having trouble paying off your debts, or you want to stop foreclosure on your home, it may be the right time to explore Chapter 13 as an approach to debt management. When planned carefully with assistance from a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney, Chapter 13 can be the turning point that enables you to get your finances under control and find a fresh start. To learn more about bankruptcy in a free consultation, contact our Rocklin Chapter 13 lawyers online, or call The Bankruptcy Group at (800) 920-5351.