Special Issues Related To Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy In Ohio
If you have filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the past, you may have to wait at least 8 years before you are allowed to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy again. To obtain a Chapter 7 discharge, you must go through a credit counseling agency and complete a debtors education courseusually online. The debtors education course will review your income and expenses and is a mandatory part of filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Ohio. In some cases, if you want to keep secured property , you are able to continue making the payments until the debt is fully paid, and both you and the creditor sign an agreement to that effect which will be filed with the court, reaffirmation could be an option.
In addition to reaffirmation, redemption is sometimes possible. Redemption means the court determines the secured propertys fair market value, then you pay this amount in one lump sum to keep the property. Since most people who are filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy have very little money at their disposal, this is rarely an option. In most cases, you will be allowed to keep your homeparticularly if you have little or no equity in the houseas well as most of your personal property in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
How To Find Bankruptcy Attorney Costs In Your Area
The fees above are just averages, and fees have likely increased since the survey was conducted. In Chapter 13 cases, judges will review attorneys fees unless they fall below a so-called no-look amount, which is a baseline considered reasonable in the jurisdiction where the case is filed. But in general, its a good idea to call or meet with several attorneys before choosing one to represent you. Bankruptcy-attorney fees are public record and can be accessed through the searchable federal PACER website. Though PACER charges a small fee for downloaded information, it can be money well spent.
The cost of living where you file will also impact what you pay. Lawyers in large metropolitan areas, like everyone else, have bigger expenses than those in more rural settings. The higher cost tends to raise all professional costs, and bankruptcy representation is no exception. Also, not all lawyers were created equal. Those with many successful years in the bankruptcy field will almost certainly demand larger fees than those with little experience.
It is a good idea to consider the complexity of your case when picking a lawyer. If you have few assets and not many debts, your simple case might not demand the sort of representation that someone with a diverse source of income, a fat folder of creditors and perhaps a suspicion of fraud, might need. In other words, not all bankruptcies are the same. Remember that mulling the sort of lawyer you might need.
What Our Bankruptcy Lawyers Do
Bankruptcy is a complex area of law. There is a lot of documentation to consider, and mistakes on your part could be misunderstood as attempts to hide assets. A lawyer is usually your best option to move through the process and resolve debts with your creditors. An experienced lawyer will know whats allowed, how to avoid having your case dismissed, and other ways to protect your financial well-being.
At Kademenos, Wisehart, Hines, Dolyk & Wright Co. LPA, we have years of experiencing handling countless bankruptcy cases with sensitivity and compassion. After you initial consultation, we will explain you options, start the paperwork, represent you in any meetings of your creditors, and resolve your bankruptcy case from start to finish. Its our job to advocate for you and help you get back onto stable ground. Call us at 871-9015 for a free consultation today.
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Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Process
Chapter 7 is the most common type of bankruptcy filing and is often the quickest. The Chapter 7 Bankruptcy process generally takes 4-6 months. The filing fee for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is $306. There are also attorney fees and administrative costs in addition to the $306.00. Call our office for a free initial consultation where you will get a free quote.
The debtor is typically only required to make one appearance in court and required to complete two credit counseling classes. To manage the entire process, a trustee is assigned, who will collect all of the debtors non-exempt assets, sell them and distribute the proceeds to the creditors. One of the biggest misconceptions with regards to Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is that debtors lose all of their personal and real property. If there is no equity in an individuals assets that can be liquidated by the Trustee, most debtors retain ownership of their assets after discharge of their debts.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Collateral
The most common examples of collateral are items such as houses and vehicles. If a debtor is behind on payments, the creditor can ask to have the automatic stay lifted in order to repossess or foreclose on the property. If the debtors payments are current, the debtor may often keep the property and continue to make payments as before, unless the property has enough equity to justify its sale by the trustee. If a creditor obtained a court judgment against the debtor and recorded a lien against the property because of unpaid debt, that debt is also secured. The debtor may be able to discharge the lien in bankruptcy. Upon completion of the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy process, a debtor is discharged of all debts, except:
- Non-dischargeable debts, such as child support, tax debts, student loans
- Debts the court has declared non-dischargeable due to creditor objection, including those incurred by means of fraud or malicious acts.
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Chapter 7 Vs Chapter 13
Both are personal consumer bankruptcies for individuals. However, there are some critical differences.
Chapter 7 usually takes less time to secure a discharge. It can happen in months, rather than years. Chapter 13 involves a three- to five-year payment plan.
Selling Property & Assets
Chapter 7 requires you to sell or liquidate some of your assets. Chapter 13 allows you to keep everything included in a repayment plan.
You must meet income requirements to qualify for Chapter 7 through a Means Test. Chapter 13 requires you to have enough stable income to make payments.
Chapter 13 has limits on the maximum amount of debt you can include. Currently there is no limit in a Chapter 7.
How Much Do You Have To Be In Debt To File Chapter 7
To file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, there are five qualifying components to look for:
- Your debts must equal more than half of your annual income
- You can estimate that your debts would take five or more years to pay off
- The debt will be interfering with aspects of life, such as relationships or personal health
- Your disposable income is low or non-existent
- The monthly income you are acquiring is lower than the median level of the state you reside in
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Greater Cincinnati And Northern Kentucky Bankruptcy Attorney
Although a decision to file for bankruptcy is a monumental one, many are surprised to see how simple it can actually be if tackled with a bankruptcy attorney at their side. An attorney can take control of the filing while staying straightforward and transparent with you about the ongoing process. This communication will give you and your family peace of mind during a typically difficult time in your lives.
Eric Steiden strictly adheres to the maxim that “clients come first” and that it is his duty to provide the best possible customer service throughout this lengthy process. He takes pride in being efficient, fast and always knowing exactly what to do. His confidence in his abilities, combined with his 25 years of bankruptcy experience will ensure that you are well taken care of. Eric is aware of the intense pressure that individuals and businesses feel during this stressful time and understands that his clients are desperate to find solutions. This translates to a passionate attorney who takes every avenue necessary to help you get out of this financial hole and on to the next stage in your evolution.
Steiden Law Offices proudly represents Kentucky residents throughout Kenton County and Boone County with two office locations, one in Florence and the other in Covington. Their representation extends to the cities of Erlanger, Elsmere, Edgewood, Villa Hills, Fort Mitchell and many more.
Chapter 7 vs. Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Information
File Your Forms With The Ohio Bankruptcy Court
The Ohio Bankruptcy Court is broken into two districts: the Northern District and the Southern District. In both districts, only lawyers can file bankruptcies electronically. You can file in person in both districts, as long as you show valid identification. Depending on which district youâre filing in, you may be able to mail your bankruptcy paperwork to the court clerk. Delivery options may change due to COVID-19, so before you submit your paperwork check the courtâs website or call the clerk to confirm.
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How Much Cash Can You Keep When Filing Chapter 7 In Ohio
If you have been affected by the recent economic downturn, by the closure of a plant, or through job loss, and you have been staying up nights worrying about how to get yourfinances in order, declaring Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be an option. You probably have a lot of questions. Will you lose your house? How much cash can you keep when filing Chapter7 in Ohio? We have information below about the exemptions you are allowed to have here in Ohio when you file Chapter 7.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Exemptions Including Wild Card Exemptions In The State Of Ohio
You will be able to protect some or all of your property by taking advantage of Ohios Chapter 7 bankruptcy exemptions which allow you to protect certain properties from your creditors. Ohio does not allow federal bankruptcy exemptions, rather requires Ohio residents to use the exemptions established by the state. If you are married, and you are filing a joint bankruptcy in the state, you may be able to double the exemption amounts. You are allowed up to $145,425 of equity in one home which you use as a residence.
You are allowed to keep $500 in the bank or in cash, and up to $4,000 value in one vehicle. You may keep $13,400 in value of furnishings and appliances, up to a value of $625 per each item.
You may keep up to $1,700 of value in jewelry, interest in one burial plot, and up to $25,175 value received from a personal injury award you received within 12 months of filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
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B Debt Settlement In Ohio
Debt settlement can be less expensive than both Debt Management and Debt Payoff Planning because the debt management company is negotiating a lower amount on your total debt. We covered the pricing estimate differences in our article covering debt management vs debt settlement.
Benefits Vs Risks Of Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
At the end of your Chapter 7 case, the court may offer a discharge on all or some of your debt, which means you are no longer required to pay the debts that existed prior to filing your bankruptcy case. Chapter 7 is also known as the liquidation bankruptcy because in exchange for your discharge and relief from paying debt, a court appointed trustee may have the ability to sell some of your assets in order to pay creditors.
Many of my clients are hesitant to file bankruptcy because of a fear of losing their property, however, filing for bankruptcy does not necessarily mean your assets will be liquidated. Ms. Nesbitt says. Many times, we are able to protect all or most of a debtors property throughout the bankruptcy and the end result provides our client with a fresh start, free of debt with all or most of their assets retained.
Ms. Nesbitt cautions, This risk of assets is exactly why it is so important to retain experienced counsel. Many times, individuals make the mistake of believing that a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing is a do-it-yourself project. It most certainly is not. This is why it is very important to retain representation and moreover, to be comfortable speaking with and asking questions and advice to the attorney you retain. In doing so, you will find the process of filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy a smooth and clear progression toward the fresh start that you need.
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Determine How Much Of Your Property Is Exempt
Ohio has a list of exemptions property you are allowed to keep despite declaring bankruptcy. Some exemptions are:
- real or personal property used as a residence
- life insurance policies and proceeds
- certain public benefits and some pensions
- alimony and child support
- personal property, including vehicles to a certain amount
- tools of the trade
Filing For Bankruptcy Without An Attorney
Most people can file a simple Chapter 7 case without an attorney. In a simple Chapter 7 case, youd have only a few creditors, youd be able to keep all of
Many people file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy without an attorney. In fact, in some districts, a whopping 28% of bankruptcy filings were by pro se litigants
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The Fee For Filing For Bankruptcy Protection
To file for bankruptcy, you need to pay the court filing fees. For either type of bankruptcy, the federal court filing fee is approximately $300. When filing for a Chapter 7, the judge may waive off the court filing fee considering the individuals income which should be below 150 percent of the poverty line.
Pre-bankruptcy credit counseling and education courses also include in the mandatory costs one needs to take into consideration when filing for a bankruptcy. According to a study commissioned by the American Bankruptcy Institute the costs average $85. You may also need to look after an attorney fee. The attorney can provide you with more information about whether bankruptcy will suit you and your needs.
The Two Types Of Bankruptcy Filings Available For Consumers Are:
Chapter 7 Chapter 7 involves getting rid of your debts through a process known as a discharge. Debts such as credit card bills, medical bills, and personal loans not secured by collateral can be eliminated through a Chapter 7 without making payments. In essence, you get a fresh start. Chapter 7 also can allow you to get out from under a burdensome home mortgage or car loan if youre willing to relinquish ownership of the house or vehicle. Most people who file a chapter 7 are able to keep a home or a car if thats what they choose to do. In very rare circumstances, if you have significant equity in any assets, like a house you own your assets may be taken and sold to pay your creditors.
Chapter 13 Chapter 13 involves re-paying your debts over 3 to 5 years through a court-approved plan. Your payment plan is administered by the Chapter 13 trustee for your region, who collects payments from you and distributes money to your creditors. Chapter 13 allows you to keep assets like a car or a home and catch up delinquent payments through your payment plan. Depending on your financial situation, you may only pay other creditors pennies on the dollar. Any remaining balance you owe for debts such as credit cards, medical bills, or personal loans not secured by collateral are discharged at the end of your plan. Chapter 13 plans are unique and different for every individual.
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A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy In Ohio
For those who make above the income limit for Chapter 7, debt relief can still come through a filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Ohio case allows you to restructure your debts into an affordable monthly plan. By restructuring debts, many people can afford to keep their homes and vehicles under Chapter 13.
Chapter 13 stops foreclosures, repossessions, and wage garnishments. Chapter 13 bankruptcy also allows you to pay back mortgage payments, past-due car payments, and tax debt over three to five years through a bankruptcy plan. In addition, Ohio may also allow you to reduce unpaid child support and alimony. However, you must resume your normal domestic support payments to remain in Chapter 13.
In a Chapter 13 plan, some debtors can lower their car loan payments and erase second mortgages, if they meet certain requirements.
Helping Clients File For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy In Lake County
Although the thought of filing forbankruptcy can be overwhelming, there are a number of benefits involved. If you have been dealing with immense financial burdens, such as large debts and harassment from collection agents, then you will likely experience great relief by filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
The team of Mentor chapter 7 bankruptcy attorneys atAxelrod Law Office can help guide you through the bankruptcy process. Contact us now to see how we can help you!
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Print Your Bankruptcy Forms
Youâll need to print your completed bankruptcy forms on regular letter-size paper. Use black ink and print on white paper. The court wonât accept duplex or double-sided pages, so make sure to print on only one side of the page. Also, donât use a hole punch on your papers or staple them together. Be sure to print out every required form, especially if youâre printing your paperwork in sections, and sign wherever thereâs a signature space.
If an attorney files your case, the attorney will probably have you sign the forms in their office. Your attorney will then electronically file your case and pay the courtâs fee online. People using Upsolve receive their forms in a downloadable packet with markers showing where to sign.