Category Archives: Chapter 7

Read This BEFORE you sign a Reaffirmation Agreement

If you are planning to file a Chapter 7 case and you have secured debts, you should be prepared to disclose to the court how you intend to handle your secured loans. In other words, you must decide whether you will surrender the asset you pledged as collateral (house, vehicle, boat, etc.) to the lender, or if you will keep the asset and continue to pay for it. If you want to keep the asset and pay for it, your lender may request that you execute a pleading called a “reaffirmation agreement.”

reaff agt pic

A reaffirmation agreement is a new contract signed by the debtor and the lender. It often sets forth new contract terms and the debtor agrees to pay all (or an agreed-upon amount) of the debt, even though the debt could have been discharged in the bankruptcy filing. This means that if you sign a reaffirmation agreement, you are giving up your right to discharge the debt that otherwise qualifies to be discharged in your case. Thus, if you sign the reaffirmation and later default on your payments, your secured lender has the legal right to repossess the collateral.

The applicable statute for reaffirmation agreements is found at 11 U.S.C. §524(c). A standard reaffirmation contract sets forth that the debtor can keep possession of the collateral as long as he or she makes timely payments as set forth in the new agreement.

The lawyer for your lender typically drafts the reaffirmation agreement. The terms may remain the same as the original loan or they may be changed. You should be aware that reaffirmation agreements can have blanks that the debtor is required to fill-in, such as the financial information needed by the court to understand whether or not the debtor can afford to reaffirm the debt. Also, the debtor and your attorney are required to sign the reaffirmation.

Deciding whether or not to sign a reaffirmation agreement is very important. You should confer with a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney to discuss your unique circumstances. Waiving your right to discharge a debt is a big decision that should only be made after conferring with your legal counsel.

If you have questions about filing for bankruptcy protection, we have the answers. Call us today to schedule your initial consultation. Our office is located in Melbourne, but we proudly serve individuals and businesses across the State of Florida.


How the Automatic Stay is Impacted by Multiple Filings

If you have previously filed for bankruptcy protection and you are considering filing another case, it is important to understand that there are certain guideline for when and how you can do it.

automatic stay pic

The court looks at what type of case you filed the first time and whether you received a discharge of your debts to determine whether you qualify to file a second bankruptcy case,. In the majority of the cases, you can file a new bankruptcy case at any time if your prior filing was dismissed and you did not receive a discharge order from the court.

If your first case was a Chapter 7 and you obtained a discharge order from the court, you can:

  • file another Chapter 7 case and receive a discharge after 8 years from the petition date of your first case.
  • file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy and receive a discharge order after 4 years from the petition date of your first case.

If your first case was under Chapter 13 and you received a discharge from the court, you can:

  • file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and receive a discharge order after 6 years from the petition date of your first case.
  • file another Chapter 13 bankruptcy after 2 years have passed from the time you filed the petition in your first case.

You should also be aware that if you have filed two or more bankruptcy cases that were dismissed within one year, the automatic stay will not be effective upon the filing of a subsequent case in the same year. This means that although you have filed bankruptcy, collection actions against you can continue until you have met certain requirements.

It is important to note, however, that there are consequences for filing more than one personal bankruptcy. A little-known penalty is that if you have had two or more bankruptcy filings dismissed within one year, the automatic stay does not go into effect in a subsequent case filed in that same year. In other words, none of your creditors are barred from continuing their collection efforts against you….at least until you meet certain conditions. To learn more, please read our blog titled “Serial Bankruptcy Filers – What You Should Know.”

If you have previously filed for bankruptcy relief and you are considering filing against, let us help. The legal team at Faro & Crowder is ready to help. Our office is located in Melbourne, but we proudly serve businesses across the State of Florida.


Converting a Chapter 7 to a Chapter 13

When you file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy case, you are committing to a payment plan that will last at least three years. If you should experience an unforeseen financial change which negatively impacts your ability to make your plan payments, you should contact us to discuss whether you are eligible to convert to a Chapter 7 case.

Ch 7 to Ch 13 pic

If you qualify for conversion, the procedure for converting your Chapter 13 to a Chapter 7 is fairly straightforward. We will prepare and file the Notification of Conversion, pay the required fee and, the majority of the time, your case is converted to a Chapter 7 within a few days.

The court will appoint a Chapter 7 trustee to supervise your case. You will have a new meeting of creditors scheduled as required by 11 U.S.C. §341. There are a few additional documents that must be filed in order to meet the requirements for a Chapter 7 filing. For instance, you must file a Statement of Intent which sets forth what you intend to do with your secured loans. This means you must state whether you will surrender the asset pledged as collateral or keep it and continue to pay for it. You may also be required to amend your schedules and statement of financial affairs to tell the court about the financial changes that have taken place since you filed your Chapter 13 case and the date you converted to a Chapter 7.

Contact a Brevard County Bankruptcy Attorney at Faro & Crowder, PA

If you are currently struggling in your Chapter 13 and you need help, contact us to discuss converting to a Chapter 7 and avoiding having your bankruptcy case dismissed by the court. Call the attorneys at Faro & Crowder today to learn more about the conversion process and how it can benefit you.

Services Areas

We provide services throughout Central Florida including: Melbourne, Titusville, Palm Bay, Merritt Island, Cocoa, Cocoa Beach, Satellite Beach, West Melbourne, Cape Canaveral, Viera and Eau Gallie.

Get In Touch with Faro & Crowder, PA

Faro & Crowder, PA
Phone: 321-784-8158
Address:
1801 N. Sarno Road, Suite 01
Melbourne, FL 32935
Email: info@farolaw.com

The information on this blog or any blog is not intended as, and should not be taken as, legal advice.

Required Filings in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Filings in Ch 7 pic

Once you have decided to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, there are several different pleadings that must be prepared and filed with the court. The law requires all bankruptcy debtors to make full financial disclosures. In other words, you are required to list all of your property, debts, income and expenses. One of your bankruptcy attorneys will assist you with creating all of the necessary paperwork, but it is important that you provide us with all of your financial records. Below is a summary of the initial pleadings that we will file in your Chapter 7 case:

  • the bankruptcy petition
  • a list of everything you own
  • a list of all you owe (debts)
  • a list of everyone you owe money to (called the “creditor matrix”)
  • a list of your current income and expenses
  • a statement of your financial affairs
  • a certificate from your lawyer demonstrating that (i) you were given a notice explaining the different bankruptcy chapters, (ii) a notice describing the services provided by the credit counseling agencies, and (ii) a statement clarifying that any debtor who intentionally or fraudulently conceals property or makes a false statement under oath is subject to fine, imprisonment, or both.

The above initial filings are commonly referred to together as your “Schedules and Statement of Financial Affairs.” Once all of your pleadings have been prepared, you will be asked to review them closely and confirm that they are accurate. The trustee will likely ask if you have reviewed all of your pleadings and whether they are true and correct at your meeting of creditors. If you should discover an error, it is imperative that you let your lawyer know immediately so it can be corrected. You file your bankruptcy pleadings with the court under the penalty of perjury, so you want to make sure it is done correctly.

If you are interested in learning more about how a bankruptcy filing will impact your debt, contact Faro Crowder, PA to schedule an appointment.


DUI Charges in your Bankruptcy Filing

If you are considering filing a personal bankruptcy, you may be wondering how driving under the influence (DUI) charge will be handled in your case.

DUI Charge pic

The primary goal of filing a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 is to eliminate debt. However, you should understand that not all types of debt are dischargeable. Bankruptcy law excludes specific types of debts from being eliminated in bankruptcy, including some debt associated with DUI charges. Therefore, it is imperative that you confer with one of our bankruptcy attorneys regarding any alcohol-related charges you have against you.

Below are few examples of the types of DUI-related debts that may not be eligible to be discharged in your bankruptcy filing, including:

  • Court-ordered settlement payments for monetary damages caused to another party in your DUI-related accident
  • Any amounts a court found you liable for that exceed a victim’s insurance limitations
  • Any debt associated with your DUI and driving without insurance
  • Any monetary damages you are held liable for due to an injury caused by a “violent crime,” which may include DUI
  • Any court-ordered payments you are liable to pay resulting from malicious or intentional injuries

If you are expecting to discharge your DUI-related debt, it is imperative that you discuss your options with a bankruptcy attorney. You may benefit from filing a Chapter 13 because even though the debt related to your DUI may not qualify for discharge, a Chapter 13 repayment plan provides a tool for you to pay the debt over a period of three to five years. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows you to organize, consolidate and afford all of your debt, including the debt related to your DUI charges.

If you are interested in learning more about filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy and how it impacts your debts, contact one of our seasoned bankruptcy attorneys to schedule your appointment.


Why YOU Should File Chapter 7

When you are struggling to pay your bills and considering filing for bankruptcy protection, it is important to understand which type of filing is best for you. This blog will discuss the benefits of filing a Chapter 7. Be sure to read our next blog to learn more about the benefits of a Chapter 13 filing.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy | Brevard County

Below are a few examples of some of the advantages of filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy:

Protection from creditors. As soon as you file your bankruptcy, the automatic stay is effective. The stay prohibits most collection activity from continuing against you while your bankruptcy is pending.

Comprehensive debt relief. Most, if not all, of your unsecured debts will be discharged or eliminated in a Chapter 7. The most common unsecured debts are credit card bills and medical debt.

Timely debt relief. A typical Chapter 7 filing lasts four to six months, which is a relatively short period of time when compared to the three to five years a Chapter 13 case lasts.

Assets protected by exemptions. While a Chapter 7 filing is often called a “liquidation bankruptcy,” the reality is that most debtors do not lose their assets. Under the law, there are numerous exemptions that protect certain assets from being included in your bankruptcy estate. Examples include protections for your home, vehicle, qualified retirement account and other types of valuable assets. In fact, it is common for a Chapter 7 debtor to discharge all of his or her debt while maintaining possession of all of his or her assets.

Affordable. A Chapter 7 case is generally less expensive than filing a Chapter 13 case. A Chapter 7 doesn’t last as long, so your lawyer’s fees and costs are usually lower.

The above are just a few examples of the benefits of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. To learn more or how a Chapter 7 filing would impact your debt, contact us to schedule an initial consultation.

Contact Faro & Crowder, PA for a free bankruptcy consultation

Don’t delay obtaining your relief from debt any longer. Call us today to schedule your free initial bankruptcy consultation. Our office is located in Melbourne on Sarno Road. We proudly serve individuals and businesses across the State of Florida.

Faro & Crowder, PA
Phone: 321-784-8158
Address:
1801 N. Sarno Road, Suite 01
Melbourne, FL 32935
Email: info@farolaw.com

How Chapter 7 is Better than Chapter 13

 

Many people come to our office seeking debt relief, but they don’t know where to begin. There are pros and cons to both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy filings, so it is important to understand them. Be sure to read our next blog titled “How Chapter 13 is Better than Chapter 7.” This blog will focus on the many benefits of a Chapter 7 case.

Ch 7 better than Ch 13 pic

The Process is Faster

A typical Chapter 7 filing takes four to five months to complete, while a Chapter 13 lasts three to five years. This can be extremely beneficial if you have a large amount of debt to discharge because you can obtain your fresh start quicker and begin rebuilding your credit faster.

Eliminate Unsecured Debts

A significant benefit of the Chapter 7 process is that you can discharge medical bills, credit card debt and most loans that do not have assets pledged as collateral to the lender. This is often the majority of an individual’s debt.

Keep Your Assets

While the Chapter 7 procedure is commonly referred to as a “liquidation” case, most debtors don’t actually lose possession of their property in their filing. The law provides you with a wide variety of exemptions that safeguard valuable assets from being used or sold to pay your creditors. Common examples of exempted property includes your home, vehicle, 401k account, clothing and common household belongings. The reality is that the majority of Chapter 7 debtors are allowed to fully discharge their debts without losing any of their assets.

More Affordable

Because the Chapter 7 process does not last as long as the Chapter 13 process, it generally costs you less to file.

Contact a Brevard County Bankruptcy Attorney at Faro & Crowder, PA

If you are interested in learning more about how a bankruptcy filing will impact your debt, contact Faro Crowder, PA to schedule an appointment. We are located in Melbourne, Florida on Sarno Road and serve residents and businesses of the Space Coast and Brevard County.

Services Areas

We provide services throughout Central Florida including: Melbourne, Titusville, Palm Bay, Merritt Island, Cocoa, Cocoa Beach, Satellite Beach, West Melbourne, Cape Canaveral, Viera and Eau Gallie.

Get In Touch with Faro & Crowder, PA

Faro & Crowder, PA
Phone: 321-784-8158
Address:
1801 N. Sarno Road, Suite 01
Melbourne, FL 32935
Email: info@farolaw.com

The information on this blog or any blog is not intended as, and should not be taken as, legal advice.

How will my Bankruptcy Filing Impact my Job?

Bky Impact Job pic

Many debtors are concerned with how their Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 filing will impact their job. It is important to understand that the law prevents your employer from firing you solely because you filed a personal bankruptcy case.

You may also be concerned with whether or not your employer will find out about your bankruptcy case. Although bankruptcy filings are a matter of public record, it is unlikely that your employer will search the records and discover your filing.

The bankruptcy courts use the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system to manage case filings. In order for an individual to access the bankruptcy records, he or she must obtain a PACER account and pay the necessary fees. Additionally, another party could appear in person at the courthouse and request to see your file, but most people will not make the effort to do so.

Finally, some states still publish bankruptcy filing notices in legal publications, but these notices are typically only read by lawyers. Additionally, these notices only list the debtor’s last name, the case number, and when a hearing is scheduled. This minimal amount of information would require an interested party to conduct further investigation to learn more about your bankruptcy case.

It should be noted that all of your creditors will be provided written notice of your Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 filing. This means that if you owe money to your employer, your employer will be given notice of your case. Also, if you file a Chapter 13 and you your repayment plan payments are made by automatic deductions from your paycheck, your employer will learn about your filing.

If you have questions about filing for bankruptcy protection, we have the answers. Call us today to schedule your initial consultation. Our office is located in Melbourne, but we proudly serve individuals and businesses across the State of Florida.


What Happens to My Inheritance if I File Bankruptcy?

Inheritance pic

If you are considering filing a personal bankruptcy, there are many factors that should be considered. The more time and planning you put into your filing, the greater your chance of success.

One factor many people do not consider is whether they will be receiving an inheritance in the near future. If an inheritance is a possibility, it is important to understand how the timing of your bankruptcy case could impact it. The date your bankruptcy is closed and the date the estate of your loved one is settled will not impact you. In contrast, your bankruptcy petition date and the date the deceased died are important.

If you inherit money or assets from the deceased within 180 days of filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition, the inherited money or assets can be included in your bankruptcy case. In other words, the inheritance may be administered and used to pay your creditors.

In a Chapter 13 case, your inheritance will be handled differently. A debtor that inherits within 180 days of filing the bankruptcy petition will have the inheritance considered by the court in determining the amount the debtor must pay into the Chapter 13 plan to pay your creditors. In some instances, an inheritance that is received after the 180 day time period has run may still be considered property of your bankruptcy estate.

The above is a general summary of what should be considered in determining the best time to file your bankruptcy case. If you believe you may be inheriting a substantial amount in the near future, it is imperative that you contact us to consider all of your legal options.

The legal team at Faro & Crowder is ready to help. Our office is located in Melbourne, but we proudly serve businesses across the State of Florida.


Marriage or Bankruptcy – Which Should Come First?

If you are drowning in debt and planning to get married soon, you should not only discuss your finances with your fiancé, but also with one of our experienced lawyers. We can help you determine the best timing for the filing of your bankruptcy and your marriage.

Bky or Marriage pic

When you file a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 case, you can discharge or eliminate the majority (if not all) of your debt. This includes credit card bills, medical debt, and a wide variety of other types of debt. Thus, filing a case before you get married can help you start your life together with a fresh financial start. It is important to understand that if your credit score is already low due to your delinquent accounts, filing for bankruptcy will probably not have a significant impact on your score.

After you have completed your bankruptcy case and discharged your debt, you can immediately start working to rebuild your credit score. Many of our clients are surprised to learn that with time and hard work, they are able to improve their credit score quicker than they expected.

If you don’t want to enter your marriage with the burden of your debt on your shoulders, contact us to discuss how a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 can help you. We understand that planning for your wedding day is important, but let us assist you with planning for your financial future and get your marriage off to a solid start!

Contact a Brevard County Bankruptcy Attorney at Faro & Crowder, PA

If you are interested in learning more about how a bankruptcy filing will impact your debt, contact Faro Crowder, PA to schedule an appointment. We are located in Melbourne, Florida on Sarno Road and serve residents and businesses of the Space Coast and Brevard County.

Services Areas

We provide services throughout Central Florida including: Melbourne, Titusville, Palm Bay, Merritt Island, Cocoa, Cocoa Beach, Satellite Beach, West Melbourne, Cape Canaveral, Viera and Eau Gallie.

Get In Touch with Faro & Crowder, PA

Faro & Crowder, PA
Phone: 321-784-8158
Address:
1801 N. Sarno Road, Suite 01
Melbourne, FL 32935
Email: info@farolaw.com

The information on this blog or any blog is not intended as, and should not be taken as, legal advice.

Contact Us For A Free Consultation






css.php