Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney in Michigan
Call (888) 258-0651 for Your Free Bankruptcy Consultation
How much will it cost & how long will it take?
Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which is executed over three to five years, the Chapter 7 bankruptcy
process can be completed in a matter of months. More specifically, you
could expect it to take 4-6 months. This includes participating in a pre-bankruptcy
credit counseling course, filling out all of the necessary paperwork,
filing your petition with the court and attending the "creditors
meeting." After all is said and done, you can expect to pay about
$300 in filing and administrative fees—as well as a small fee for the
credit counseling course. Once your bankruptcy has been resolved, however, you will be legally
absolved of the obligation to repay most, if not all, of your debt.
Can anyone file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy?
The short answer to this question is, no. While Chapter 7 is the most widely
used form of bankruptcy, certain measures have been taken to ensure that
only those facing the direst of financial situations can actually file.
That being said,
you will be
required to take a means test to
determine whether or not you qualify. The
means test will evaluate your income and expenses, deducting specific monthly expenses
from your current monthly income. The figure that is left over will be
deemed your "disposable income"—which is the monthly sum
of money that you should, ideally, be able to contribute to repaying debt.
The higher the number, the less likely it will be that you qualify.
What information will I need to provide on the forms?
When filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you will need to fill out a petition
and numerous different forms. Once your paperwork has been completed,
you will submit it to the
bankruptcy court in your area—the purpose of which is to give the court a better
idea of how you are faring financially. This means that you will need
to describe the following information in detail:
- Any property that you currently own
- Your current income & living expenses
- All debts that you have incurred
Property you wish to claim as an
- Money you spent during the previous 2 years
- Property you sold in the previous 2 years
Can creditors still contact me after I have filed?
Once you have officially filed your bankruptcy petition with the court,
a judge will issue an "automatic stay." This court order will
immediately prohibit creditors from continuing their collection efforts—which
also means that you cannot be subject to any further wage garnishments,
foreclosures. All efforts must be stopped until your bankruptcy case has been resolved,
giving you the peace of mind that you need during this time. If a creditor
attempts to contact you, you should immediately inform them that you have
initiated the bankruptcy process. If this behavior persists, however,
let a Michigan bankruptcy attorney step in.
Will I be required to appear in bankruptcy court?
Typically, those who file under Chapter 7 will only need to appear in court once.
One to two weeks after filing your petition, a "creditors meeting" will be scheduled. During
this court visit, you and your lawyer will meet with the bankruptcy trustee
who has been assigned to your case and/or any of your creditors who wish
to attend. The bankruptcy trustee will then question you about why you
are filing for bankruptcy, whether or not you have listed the accurate
values of all property that is included in the petition, whether or not
you have transferred money to relatives or friends before filing, etc.
Since they are acting on behalf of your creditors, they will want to ensure
that your debts are repaid in the fullest amount possible.
Will all debts be wiped out during bankruptcy?
Once your bankruptcy trustee has taken measures to liquidate non-exempt
assets and repay creditors, the bankruptcy court will discharge any remaining
debt. This includes credit card debt, medical debt, business debt, etc.
It is important to understand that
not all debt is dischargeable, however, as
certain debts will always survive bankruptcy. These may include:
- Child & spousal support
- Student loans
- Government fines
- Parking tickets
- State & federal taxes
- Housing & rental fees
Will I need to hire a Michigan bankruptcy lawyer?
When dealing with any type of complex legal matter, it is always advisable
that you rely on the advice of an experienced legal professional. While
filing for bankruptcy may seem fairly cut and dry, it is important to
understand that your financial stability could be on the line. For this
reason, Hensel Law Office, PLLC encourages you to seek legal guidance
as soon as possible. My name is Thomas Hensel, and I have been practicing
law since 1999,
personally managing every single case for my clients. This means that you will never be passed off to a secretary, paralegal
or associate attorney when you work with my firm. As a Madison Heights
bankruptcy attorney, I will be by your side throughout every step of the
If you are interested in
scheduling a free bankruptcy consultation with me, call today for fast support. You can
contact my firm locally at (586) 939-4800 or toll-free at (888) 258-0651. I am even available
to meet in the evening or on the weekend, in addition to regular business
hours. I am focused on making this experience as convenient and painless
as possible for you. That being said, there is no reason why you should
wait any longer to retain the professional assistance that you will need!