Bankruptcy FAQ

Bankruptcy is a process available through the federal court system that is designed to help individual and joint consumers repay or address their outstanding debts. Generally, this is done by filing bankruptcy under either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 of Title 11 of the United States Code. Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is what most people think of when they think of “Bankruptcy”. It is a straight liquidation bankruptcy where the filer is allowed to keep a select amount of property, known as exemptible property, and the rest is liquidated to pay as much to creditors as possible. Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is usually the option for high-earning individuals or filers with property they would like to keep that does not fit within the available exemptions. Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is different from Chapter 7 in that it is a restructured payment plan spanning 3-5 years rather than an immediate liquidation of unexempt property. The choice of which chapter to file depends largely on the filer’s financial situation, and in recent years Congress has enacted stricter requirements for Chapter 7 qualification.
No, there are a number of options available to individual’s filing bankruptcy to help them stay in their home. In fact, filing for bankruptcy often grants a filer greater protection of their home from creditors than they normally have outside of the bankruptcy code.
Not necessarily. Bankruptcy allows a filer to keep their vehicle if they can stay current on payments and in a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy filers can even keep a vehicle when they have fallen behind on payments by addressing the arrearage amount through their Chapter 13 plan.
The impact that filing bankruptcy has on your credit score is often over exaggerated, usually by filers who do not take the proper steps to rebuild their credit after filing bankruptcy. In fact, we have seen clients obtain a mortgage loan as soon as 2 years after filing bankruptcy. Our legal team is well experienced in the best methods for rebuilding your credit score and can provide helpful tips on how to secure loans as quickly as possible after filing.

The main benefit that almost any Bankruptcy filer is after is their discharge. Once your creditors have
been paid what the Court determines they are due, the Court will issue a filer their discharge. This is the
document that officially absolves that filer of their liability for all debts listed in their Bankruptcy Petition
that qualified for discharge. In addition to discharge, filers enjoy: protection from creditor harassment,
the protective benefits of the Bankruptcy Code’s Automatic Stay, and protection from creditor actions in relation to listed debts. The Bankruptcy Code protects a filer’s property from foreclosure, repossession,
seizure, or garnishment. If you are facing creditor harassment, repossession attempts, or a wage
garnishment give us a call today and we can make it stop.

Deciding when to file Bankruptcy is a strategic legal decision that should be discussed with a qualified attorney. There are several disadvantages to filing a case at the wrong time, including missing the ability to discharge certain debts, preclusion from discharge, or even dismissal of your case. It is also important to make sure that you meet with a qualified legal expert as early as possible, before things get out of hand. We can certainly help you straighten any situation out, but the sooner you reach out the better we can assist you with getting life back on track.
There a number of factors that effect a loan’s ability to be discharged, it is important to make sure that you meet with an experienced attorney who can help you determine which debts are likely to discharge and which are not, and how to most effectively file your case in order to discharge as many as possible. At Lifeline Legal, our team is well versed in all available state and federal exemptions so you can rest assured that you don’t leave anything on the table.
No, the entire point of the Bankruptcy process from the legislative perspective is to put the filer back in a position where they are a productive member of the economy. This goal would not be well accomplished by kicking debtors to the street with nothing to their name. There are several state and federal exemptions available to all Bankruptcy filers which allow filers to retain possession of essential items like a home, car, clothing, household goods, professional tools, and even jewelry so that they are not forced to start over with nothing. it is important to meet with an attorney who knows and understands these exemptions so that you maximize the protection of your property during filing. At Lifeline Legal, our team is well versed in all available state and federal exemptions so you can rest assured that you don’t leave anything on the table

Bankruptcy is a complicated and very technical area of law. While the Federal Bankruptcy Code
governs much of the Bankruptcy process, each state has its own local set of Bankruptcy rules and
exemptions that play a huge factor in the success of a client’s case. If you want to maximize the amount
of property you can exempt and ensure that you are not paying back anything more than you are legally
obligated to, you need a legal expert who can guide you through the process. Our team has drafted
hundreds of petitions and we practice exclusively in Arizona, making us very familiar with the local rules
and exemptions which helps ensure that you never pay more than you have to.