Bankruptcy is a huge financial decision and should not be lightly considered. Digest the information contained herein, so that you are aware of what you can expect and you know what actions to take prior to making that critical decision. All knowledge that you can gain at this point will only help you on the difficult road ahead.
Once you file for bankruptcy, you will have a hard time getting loans or credits. A great way to rebuild your credit is to apply for a prepaid credit card. This will demonstrate that you’re seriously trying to restore your credit. After using a secured card for a certain amount of time, you might be offered an unsecured card once again.
Prior to filing for bankruptcy, research which assets will remain exempt from creditors. The Bankruptcy Code lists assets considered exempt from being affected by bankruptcy. Make sure that you carefully look over this list prior to filing to discover if your valuable assets will be seized. If you are not aware of the rules, you could be setting yourself up for a lot of stress when your most important possessions are taken in the bankruptcy.
You should be able to meet with a specialized lawyer for free to ask your questions. Most lawyers offer free consultations, so consult with a few before settling on one. Therefore consult with different lawyers and get a feel for them, then decide which one suits your needs There is no need to offer an immediate hire, so take your time. Consulting with several attorneys will also help you find someone you trust.
Many bankruptcy attorneys offer the first consultation with no charge, so consult with several before deciding on one. Ensure that you have a meeting with a real lawyer instead of an assistant, since they can provide the best advice. Look for a lawyer who you can relate to.
Be sure your home is well protected. Filing for bankruptcy does not mean you have to lose your home. If your home has significantly depreciated in value or you’ve taken a second mortgage, it may be possible to retain possession of your home. Otherwise, there is a homestead exemption you should look into, as it might let you stay in your house.
Consider filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you have regular income and under $250K in unsecured debt, a Chapter 13 may be right for you. Not only can you repay your debts through consolidation, personal property can be kept, as well as real estate. This repayment period usually lasts from three to five years. If you make your payments faithfully during that time, any remaining unsecured debt will be eliminated. However, if you are unable to properly commit to the plan you agree to, your case can be dismissed.
As you’ve read, bankruptcy isn’t as simple as it might sound. Many steps must be taken, and they must be completed properly. By following the above advice, you will make fewer mistakes and find yourself better prepared.