Both types of Bankruptcy have their advantages and disadvantages. Your particular finances and specific situations will dictate if you should file and what type you should file. This is why it is best to get an attorney to assist and guide you through the process. We offer free initial consultation, so don't hesitate to call us at - 281-769-8179.
In consumer bankruptcy, there are two primary types of bankruptcy that individuals will generally file. There are a few other types of bankruptcy, but these generally apply to companies and other specific entities. The two types that apply to individuals are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.
Chapter 7 - Chapter 7 is referred to as a liquidation bankruptcy. Basically the debtor will be allowed to keep certain property to the extent that he or she can make a fresh start. Any remaining property and assets will be liquidated to satisfy creditor claims. This is the most common type of bankruptcy and is usually granted within 6 months of filing.
Chapter 13 - Chapter 13 bankruptcy involves the creation of a payment plan for the debtor. The debtor will pay back at least part of the debt using a payment plan that lasts between 3 and 5 years. Chapter 13 can involve a broader discharge than Chapter 7. It can also be used to prevent foreclosure of a mortgage.
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Bankruptcy Discharge: This is usually accomplished at the end of your case. It causes all of your debts (with a few exceptions) to be discharged or canceled. This is usually the most important aspect of filing for Bankruptcy and is probably the best benefit you will receive from this process. The exceptions to discharge under chapter 7 are taxes, child support, alimony, and debts for willful and malicious acts. In Chapter 13 some of these items are included and it is generally broader. Neither chapter will generally remove lien on property.
Filing for Bankruptcy can give you a fresh start by discharging most of your debts. Federal law guarantees the availability of bankruptcy protection to everyone. All bankruptcies are filed in federal court. In this case that would be the Federal District Court for the Southern District of Texas.
The Automatic Stay: The Automatic Stay takes effect immediately upon filing. This means that creditors must cease their harassing letters and phone calls right away. Creditors also may not sell property in foreclosure or continue with a lawsuit. In fact, any creditor actions require permission from the court at this point. This gives you great protection.
It is difficult to predict exactly how a bankruptcy will impact your credit. Sometimes filing for bankruptcy will allow you to rehabilitate your credit faster than you would have been able to do otherwise. In other cases, if your credit is bad, it may prevent it from getting worse. A bankruptcy filing will stay on your credit report for 10 years. In some cases, it may take you a number of years to rebuild your credit.