Protecting Your Assets During Bankruptcy
The bankruptcy process isn’t designed to leave petitioners on the street without a place to live or way to earn income. Instead, filing for bankruptcy is meant to be one way toward a future of financial health and freedom.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a common way to file, requires the liquidation of your non-exempt assets. The proceeds are used to help pay for your debts. However, this isn’t your only option. Chapter 13 bankruptcy enables debtors to keep all of their assets while restructuring their debts into an affordable payment plan based on their income and expenses.
In order to file Gilbert Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you’ll need to meet certain qualifications. Even if you don’t qualify for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, many of your assets are still exempt from seizure so that you have the resources you need to move forward. Your attorney can walk you through your options and maximize the protection of your hard-earned assets.
Each person’s financial situation is different, which means you need to work with a Gilbert bankruptcy law firm who provides a personalized approach instead of cookie cutter methods. Be sure to consult with an experienced attorney who will help you maximize the benefits of bankruptcy while protecting your assets.
How Can I Keep My Assets After Filing For Bankruptcy?
Many individuals and businesses qualify for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Once you file, all debt collection efforts, pending litigation and judgments, evictions, and foreclosure processes stop immediately. This can provide breathing room while you determine your next actions.
Once you’ve filed your Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition, the court will examine your situation and restructure your debts into a monthly repayment plan that fits with your income and expenses. You’ll make one consolidated payment each month for 3-5 years. At the end of that period, the rest of your debt will be discharged.
Petitioners who file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and successfully complete their payment plan are able to keep all of their personal and business assets, including their home, vehicle, and bank accounts, both during and after bankruptcy proceedings.
Understanding Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Individuals who do not qualify for Chapter 13 bankruptcy may need to file for Gilbert Chapter 7 bankruptcy. After the petition is filed, debt collection efforts, eviction or foreclosure, and pending litigation actions will all stop immediately, just like with a Chapter 13 filing.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is different from Chapter 13 in that a bankruptcy trustee will be assigned to your case to gather and sell all of your non-exempt assets. This includes community property held by your spouse. These assets can include:
The state of Arizona recognizes specific exemptions that enable petitioners to protect certain assets and property from liquidation. Assets that are protected in Chapter 7 bankruptcy include:
Consult with your Gilbert bankruptcy lawyer for a more extensive list of exempt assets that you can keep after your file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Some assets that hold very little value, such as very old vehicles in poor condition, may also be exempted. Some assets with high value, such as jewelry valued above the exemption limit will be sold, after which you will receive $2000, with the remaining value from the sale going toward your debts.
Protecting Your Assets Before Bankruptcy
It’s crucial to realize that it is illegal to hide, sell, or transfer assets before or during your bankruptcy in an attempt to keep them from liquidation. For example, you cannot transfer the balance of your checking account to a retirement account in hopes of protecting it. Recently transferred funds will be removed from the retirement account and liquidated to cover your debts.
However, there are certain strategic ways to protect your assets. Consult with your trusted Gilbert bankruptcy attorney to discuss your situation and develop a personalized plan that will maximize the protection of your assets. Your attorney may be able to help you by challenging or disputing certain debts, negotiating payments plans, recommending a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, or timing your filing.
Work With The Best Gilbert Bankruptcy Lawyer To Protect Your Hard-Earned Assets
Gilbert Bankruptcy Lawyers are the #1 bankruptcy lawyer team in Gilbert. Our experience with thousands of clients has helped us develop a reputation for professionalism, comprehensive guidance, and respect. We are ready to help you develop a personalized approach to your financial situation for the best possible outcome and maximum protection of your assets. Get in touch with us today to schedule your risk-free, confidential consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.
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