Bankruptcy seems to be on every’s mind these days. With the rising tide of unemployment, mounting medical debts and a foreclosure crisis that seems to be going on forever, lots of people in the Syracuse and White Plains area are wondering if it’s the right option for them.
There’s a lot of misinformation about this particular form of debt relief. Just look in the Post-Standard and you’ll see enough ads for credit counseling, debt settlement, mortgage refinances and bankruptcy lawyers to make your head spin.
But let’s strip away the legal terminology and be clear – bankruptcy is simply a way for you to reorganize or even eliminate your debts through the federal bankruptcy court system. Businesses, farms, municipalities and people can file a case, though the type of case you file will depend on a variety of factors.
For consumers (as opposed to businesses and family farmers), bankruptcy can:
- wipe out legal obligation to repay many of your debts, including credit cards, personal loans, medical bills and utilities
- help you catch up on mortgage arrears and property taxes
- save a car from repossession
- stop a home foreclosure sale
- stop collection calls and
- handle your overdue income tax debts.
Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases for people who live in Onondaga County are all filed in Syracuse, which is where the courthouse is located.
Bankruptcy law is complex, and it can be confusing. The law has evolved since the founding of the United States, which means there have been a lot of twists and turns in how things work. Trying to learn how to handle your own case can be frustrating and, for most people, an incredible challenge.
The judges and trustees who handle Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases in Syracuse can be extremely demanding, but they are fair. The bargain you strike, at least in Syracuse, is that you will do everything right in exchange for your case going through without a problem. For that reason, hiring a lawyer is a good idea.
Before deciding to file for bankruptcy, you should dive more deeply into this site and the information it offers. In particular, I recommend the following:
- How Do I File for Bankruptcy? Find out how and where you can file a case, what you need to start and where you will need to go.
- What are Bankruptcy Exemptions? Find out how to keep most or all of your property in a Chapter 7 or pay less to your creditors in a Chapter 13.
- What is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy? Find information about Chapter 7, including its advantages and disadvantages, how it works and how to qualify.
- What is Chapter 13 Bankruptcy? Find information about Chapter 13 repayment plans and how they can help you save your house, save your car, potentially reduce your balances on these debts and protect your valuable property.
- Can Bankruptcy Stop Creditor Calls? Find out how bankruptcy stops collection activity and prevents your creditors from contacting you.
- Are My Debt Collectors Harassing Me? Find out your rights when it comes to debt collection and how you can stop collection harassment.
If you are constantly fielding phone calls from bill collectors or are in danger of losing your home or your vehicle, or if you simply feel like debt is taking over your life and you want options from an expert in the field, contact me for a no-obligation, free consultation to talk about how I may be able to help you.