How much do you have to be in debt to file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
Chapter 7 is known as the “liquidation bankruptcy” because it discharges most of your unsecured debt. There truly is no set minimum amount of debt you must have in order to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy relief. However in order to determine if you should consider bankruptcy there are many steps to consider.
One of the very first steps if you find that you are in a position to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy would be to get a qualified bankruptcy attorney. A Baltimore lawyer that is experienced and dedicated is Nicholas J. Del Pizzo and his firm. You get the personalized attention you need from a local law firm.
Are you qualified?
In order to start the process of bankruptcy, you must first see if you are qualified. To see if you are qualified you must look into what is known as the means test. You will qualify if your current monthly income (the average of your last six months of income) is below your current state median limit. If your CMI is more than your state median income you can go through the means test calculation to see if you qualify.
Are your debts dischargeable?
Even if you might qualify to file a Chapter 7 case you want to also make certain that it will give you the relief you are seeking, a true fresh start. In order to determine this you must look at the type of debts you are seeking to discharge.
List of items that can be discharged:
- Credit Card Debt
- Medical Bills
- Personal Loan
- Mortgage or automobile loans that you can no longer pay (but you lose possession of)
- Any other form of unsecured debt
List of non-dischargeable debt:
- Student loans
- Child support
- Back taxes
- Court fees and penalties
- Homeowner Association fees
- Any unsecured debts left off your filing
- Personal injury debts owed due to an accident while you were intoxicated
Is this the right time to file for bankruptcy?
If you file a Chapter 7 case that is successfully discharged you are unable to file again and receive a discharge for 8 years. While it is impossible to see into the future to determine what life may bring, you should still think about your current level of debt as you try to decide if filing a case now is worthwhile.
There are several warning signs that you should be considering Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Five strong signs that indicate filing now may be the right decision include:
- Your debts total more than half your annual income
- It would take five years (or more) to pay off your debt, even if you took extreme measures
- Your debt creates stress in essential aspects of your life, such as relationships and your ability to sleep
- You have little to no disposable income
- Your monthly income is below the median level in your state
Conclusion: How much do you have to be in debt to file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
While there is no official minimum debt amount to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case there are still a lot of important factors to consider when determining if bankruptcy is the best solution for you.
If the time comes that you are ready to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy be sure to have the right attorney on your side. At The Law Offices of Nicholas J. Del Pizzo, III P.A. in Baltimore, Maryland, we make ourselves available for our clients when they are facing foreclosure of their home, bankruptcy, personal injury or medical malpractice. Whatever your legal need is, we are there for you, seven days a week. Your case becomes our cause, and we will seek the best resolution possible.
About The Law Offices of Nicholas J Del Pizzo
The burden of overwhelming debt can be too much for anyone to handle. That is where we come in to help. At The Law Offices of Nicholas J. Del Pizzo, III P.A. in Baltimore, our knowledge of and experience with bankruptcy law can help you get that fresh start by wiping out your debts, reorganizing your finances or saving your home. To learn more about how we can represent you as your Dundalk bankruptcy lawyer please contact us today.