Taxes

State or federal income taxes may be discharged in a bankruptcy proceeding if: 1) the taxes for such tax year are at least 3 years old; 2) a tax return was filed for such tax year at least 2 years prior to the bankruptcy filing date; 3) the tax return was not intentionally false or …

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Student Loans

Student loans (also known as “educational loans”) are not discharged in a bankruptcy proceeding unless the bankruptcy judge determines that payment of the debt “will impose an undue hardship on the debtor and the debtors dependents.” 11 U.S.C. Section 523(a)(8). Courts use different tests to evaluate whether a particular borrower has shown an undue hardship. …

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Credit Cards

Credit card issuers sometimes challenge the discharge of credit card debt in bankruptcy by filing a complaint objecting to the dischargeability of the debt (also known as an “adversary proceeding”) claiming that the debt was fraudulently incurred and therefore should be excluded from the discharge. Credit card debt may be non-dischargeable in bankruptcy under either …

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Automobile Loans

Filing Chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy results in an “automatic stay” that immediately stops repossession of the debtors vehicle. Under Chapter 7, the debtor has the following options: 1)  retain the vehicle, “reaffirm” the debt and keep making regular payments to the creditor; 2)  “redeem” the vehicle by making a lump sum payment to the creditor …

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Mortgages

When a debtor reaffirms a debt, he is essentially excluding that debt from his bankruptcy proceeding on the debtor’s home. Filing Chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy results in an “automatic stay” that immediately stops any foreclosure proceeding on the debtors home. Under Chapter 7, the debtor has the following options: 1)  retain the home, “reaffirm” the …

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Negative Consequences

Federal bankruptcy laws were established by the United States Congress to provide individuals and organizations with a “fresh start” by allowing them to legally eliminate all or a portion of their debts and to start anew. Federal bankruptcy laws were designed to help those in financial distress—not to further burden or hinder them. Despite the …

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Allowable Living Expenses

The following expenses are typically considered as “allowable living expenses” in a Chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy proceeding if reasonable in amount: ● Rent or home mortgage payment (including lot rented for mobile home)● Electricity, natural gas, butane● Cable television● Internet service● Water and sewer● Telephone (including cellular phones)● Trash service● Home maintenance/repairs● Food● Clothing● …

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Frequently Asked Questions About Bankruptcy

Frequently Asked Questions About Bankruptcy What is Bankruptcy?Bankruptcy is a federal program established to provide debt relief to persons and organizations suffering from financial difficulties. Different types of bankruptcy relief are available under various chapters of the United States Bankruptcy Code. The two primary forms of bankruptcy relief available for individuals are under Chapters 7 …

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Chapter 13

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a debt repayment plan that protects the debtor from collection action during theplan and discharges (forgives) any unpaid balance of dischargeable debts at the end of the plan. Chapter 13is available to individuals that have regular income and have liquidated, unsecured debts not exceeding $336,900 and secured debts not exceeding $1,010,650. …

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Chapter 7

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the most common type of bankruptcy and is available to individuals, married couples, corporations and partnerships. Chapter 7 is a liquidation proceeding in which the debtors non-exempt assets, if any, are sold by a court-appointed “trustee” and the proceeds distributed to creditors according to priorities established in the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. …

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