Go To Court To File Your Forms
Even though you can file your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Maryland by mailing all the necessary documents and your court filing fee to the court, if at all possible, it’s better to go to the courthouse in person to take care of this. Otherwise, the actual filing date for your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Maryland could potentially delayed if there is an issue with the forms that could easily be corrected if you were there in person. Since the automatic stay only goes into effect after your case has been filed, this can mean the difference between a creditor garnishing your next paycheck or not. Depending on where you live, you can go to either the Baltimore or the Greenbelt locations when filing bankruptcy in Maryland as both have a fully staffed clerk’s office. Since you will be entering a government building, you will have to pass through security on your way in.
Provided By A Maryland And Washington Dc Bankruptcy Attorney
Former students are becoming increasingly indebted to universities, and some go so far as to declare bankruptcy in the wake of enormous student loans. While many students want to know how to discharge student loans in bankruptcy, it is important to note that these loans are typically considered non-dischargeable debts, meaning declaring bankruptcy will not release a debtor from student loans. However, bankruptcy can create situations that allow you to build a stable foundation for your finances.
If you are facing seemingly insurmountable student loans and feel bankruptcy is a solution, The Law Firm of Kevin D. Judd can help you overcome your debt. Kevin D. Judd is a Washington DC and Maryland bankruptcy attorney who has worked with many former students struggling with debt. He can help you understand your options and find a solution that will set you on the path to financial security.
Understand Your Maryland Bankruptcy Options
Bankruptcy will affect your credit and make it nearly impossible to obtain financing on future purchases for a period of up to 10 years. Declaring bankruptcy now, gives you more time to rebuild your future credit.Note that you can not file bankruptcy on student loans or other obligations such as child support or alimony.It is important to understand your options. If you are considering chapter 7 bankruptcy contact any of the Maryland bankruptcy attorneys that we have listed on our site.
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What Is The Bankruptcy Filing Process In Maryland
Consumer bankruptcy always begins with a petition that is voluntarily filed by you. The decision to go to court is yours alone to make. When you meet with our attorneys, they require quite a bit of information regarding your:
Much of this information can be gleaned from your credit report and is used to file a petition and schedules. If an adverse action is immediately forthcoming and time is short, the schedules may sometimes be filed later. In addition, you also need to gather important financial and personal documents, including your:
- Tax returns
- Pay stubs
- Social security card
Bankruptcy fraud is a serious crime with serious penalties. When you meet with our attorneys, do not hold anything back. You should answer all questions completely and honestly. We are here to advise you and to be an advocate for you.
Keeping Property When Filing Bankruptcy In Maryland
You won’t lose everything in bankruptcy. You’ll use your state bankruptcy exemption laws to protect your property. We list the significant exemptions below, but first, understanding the following will help you maximize what you’ll keep in your case.
- Exempt and nonexempt property. You can keep property protected by an exemption or “exempt” property. When a bankruptcy exemption doesn’t cover the property, you’ll either lose it in Chapter 7 or have to pay for it in the Chapter 13 repayment plan.
- Choosing state or federal exemptions. Unlike some other states, you can’t choose between the state exemption list and the list of federal bankruptcy exemptions. You must use Maryland’s exemptions. But you can use the federal nonbankruptcy exemptions.
- Doubling exemptions. Spouses filing together can double the exemption amount if both own the property unless noted otherwise.
- COVID-19 recovery rebate exemption. You might be able to protect stimulus payments, tax credits, and child credits in bankruptcy with the federal recovery rebate exemption.
- Retirement accounts all filers can protect. You can protect tax-exempt retirement accounts, including 401s, 403s, profit-sharing and money purchase plans, SEP and SIMPLE IRAs, and defined benefit plans and traditional and Roth IRAs to $1,362,800 per person . .) Learn more about retirement accounts in bankruptcy.
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Filing Without An Attorney
Individuals can file bankruptcy without an attorney, which is called filing pro se. However, seeking the advice of a qualified attorney is strongly recommended because bankruptcy has long-term financial and legal outcomes.
Filing personal bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 takes careful preparation and understanding of legal issues. Misunderstandings of the law or making mistakes in the process can affect your rights. Court employees and bankruptcy judges are prohibited by law from offering legal advice.
The following is a list of ways your lawyer can help you with your case.
- Advise you on whether to file a bankruptcy petition.
- Advise you under which chapter to file.
- Advise you on whether your debts can be discharged.
- Advise you on whether or not you will be able to keep your home, car, or other property after you file.
- Advise you of the tax consequences of filing.
- Advise you on whether you should continue to pay creditors.
- Explain bankruptcy law and procedures to you.
- Help you complete and file forms.
- Assist you with most aspects of your bankruptcy case.
Bankruptcy Forms are available to the public free of charge.
- Use the forms that are numbered in the 100 series to file bankruptcy for individuals or married couples.
- Use the forms that are numbered in the 200 series if you are preparing a bankruptcy on behalf of a nonindividual, such as a corporation, partnership, or limited liability company .
- Sole proprietors must use the forms that are numbered in the 100 series.
What Are The Qualifications For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
First and foremost, you must have debt that you can no longer afford to pay. Generally, you must be in that robbing Peter to pay Paul situation and your income has to satisfy the means test. If it does not, you would have a hard time qualifying for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It would be a presumption of abuse if your income is over the thresholds that are provided and you would have a difficult time getting a Chapter 7 discharge. But, ideally, this is the typical consumer-debtor bankruptcy for people that do not own homes and are having a hard time making ends meet.
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Do I Need A Lawyer To File For Bankruptcy
There is no legal requirement to have a lawyer when filing for bankruptcy, however, in most cases it is recommended. The law can be very complex, especially with the federal bankruptcy law changes implemented in 2005. An attorney serves two important purposes in the bankruptcy process:
- Ensures that persons filing for bankruptcy meet all the requirements
- Guarantees the rights of the person filing for bankruptcy under the full protection of the law
Kinds Of Consumer Bankruptcy
There are two common consumer bankruptcy options and one informal bankruptcy option in Maryland: Chapter 7, Chapter 13, and “Chapter 20” bankruptcy.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Many families struggle with medical bills, credit cards, and other kinds of unsecured debt. In as little as six or nine months, Chapter 7 bankruptcy eliminates these debts and gives these families a fresh start.
For debtors who have a bankruptcy lawyer, the Chapter 7 process is relatively straightforward. An attorney completes and files the complicated petition and schedules. Then, your attorney is at your side during a meeting with the bankruptcy trustee. At this meeting, the trustee verifies the debtor’s identity and looks for evidence of bankruptcy fraud. This evidence includes significant income changes and lifestyle/income differences. For example, if Ted drives a new SUV and reports an income of $1,000 a month, something smells fishy.
If everything goes well at this meeting, and it usually does, the judge often issues a discharge order without holding a hearing.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
If past-due mortgage payments or other secured debt delinquency is a problem, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is usually the solution. Chapter 13 gives debtors up to five years to catch up on overdue bills.
“Chapter 20” Bankruptcy
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Contact Our Bankruptcy Attorneys For A Free Initial Consultation And Skilled Compassionate Representation In Maryland
Our compassionate attorneys at Wolff & Orenstein, LLC understand what you and your family are going through when you file bankruptcy, and we are committed to help you move through this trying time. Contact our Rockville bankruptcy lawyers who are well known for their quality work. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation, call us at or contact us online.
Skilled Bankruptcy Attorney in Maryland Biography: Michael G. Wolff is a seasoned veteran with more than 30 years of experience practicing bankruptcy law. He is a respected attorney responsible for handling complex bankruptcy cases. He has served as a Bankruptcy Trustee for over 20 years in Maryland. He also enjoys a superior reputation among hisâ¦
What Forms Do I Have To Fill Out For Bankruptcy Filing
The forms required for bankruptcy filing vary from case to case. First of all, there is a form that calculates the means test. There are also forms specific to Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 filing. Finally, there are additional forms, called schedules, that record data about creditors, debt, income, assets, expenses, and overall financial affairs. The US Bankruptcy Court District of Maryland provides an online library of forms.
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Connect With A Dedicated Attorney
If your family needs to eliminate debt, protect assets, and get a fresh start, contact a today.
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts , ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law you are researching.
How To File Bankruptcy In Maryland For Free
People who need to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Maryland sometimes are in such financial distress that even the $338 court filing fee is more than they can handle. If you identify with this sentiment, you can ask the court to waive the fee, and as long as your income is less than 150% of the federal poverty guidelines you may end up filing bankruptcy in Maryland for free.
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How Does Declaring Bankruptcy Work
I asked Howard Dvorkin, chairman and CEO of Debt.com, to help me figure it out. He told me that bankruptcy is a way for people to get rid of their debt and start fresh when all else fails. Thats how the Supreme Court described it in a 1934 opinion, saying bankruptcy gives the honest but unfortunate debtor an opportunity to thrive unhampered by the pressure and discouragement of pre-existing debt.
Declaring bankruptcy isnt super common. In 2020, only about 523,000 people did so the lowest number of filings since 1986, and down from 752,000 the year before.
There are two primary types of personal bankruptcy: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Dvorkin says Chapter 7 is what most people think of when they imagine bankruptcy, where the court sells some of my assets to pay off my debts. Chapter 13, on the other hand, is more of a reorganization where I repay some of what I owe through a court-ordered plan.
Chapter 7 is largely for low-income people. Its fast, taking about 120 days compared to Chapter 13, which can take up to five years.
Both types get rid of unsecured debt, which includes credit card debt and medical bills but usually not student loans or back taxes, according to Sheereen Middleton, a bankruptcy attorney in Maryland. Bankruptcy can be a strategic move to eliminate that debt, which would then leave you with a favorable debt-to-income ratio, she adds.
Its something where it can literally change your life, Middleton says.
Will Declaring Bankruptcy Discharge My Student Loans
Washington DC Bankruptcy Attorney Discusses a Little Known Fact Most people assume that one cannot discharge a student loan debt through bankruptcy. The accepted fact is that you can get rid of most kinds of unsecured debt through bankruptcy, but student loans are one thing you cant wipe out through bankruptcy. A careful reading of bankruptcy law reveals that this is almost always true. For those able to prove that repaying a loan would cause undue hardship, student loans can, in fact, be discharged by bankruptcy. Undue hardship is undefined in bankruptcy law, meaning that each individual court decides what it means, making it an incredibly difficult condition to meet. For starters, one must be able to prove not only an inability to repay loans now, but very little chance of being able to pay them in the future either. Most borrowers dont even try to discharge student loans since
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A Maryland Trustee Is Assigned To Your Bankruptcy Filing
A bankruptcy trustee is assigned to your bankruptcy case to review the paperwork and look for non-exempt belongings that you may own. You have to submit such forms as a recent tax return to the trustee. If you have non-exempt belongings, the trustee may manage the sale and liquidation of those belongings.
See the Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 trustees in Maryland for bankruptcy district, name and contact information. As a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is much longer, you may have more interaction with the Chapter 13 trustee or someone from his/her office.
How To File Bankruptcy In Maryland
There are a handful of aspects that are affiliated with financial matters. Several common reasons include personal debt, illness, divorce, home foreclosure, or losing ones job.
In fact, the average credit card debt in Maryland is a whopping $6,267 per person. In addition, foreclosure rates are also as staggering, one out of every 1,117 MD homes is currently in foreclosure.
If you can relate to the scenarios above, then you are more than likely facing other personal problems that come with dealing with debt. The fear of losing your car, home or your money can drain a person physically. You have probably even considered Claiming Bankruptcy .
If you are thinking Can I File Bankruptcy? you are certainly not alone. Close to a million people file bankruptcy each year in the US. Bankruptcy is a means provided by the US Government to help struggling Americans find relief from substantial debt. You may want to check your eligibility for bankruptcy if its best for you.
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How Will Filing Bankruptcy Affect My Credit
The way that bankruptcy filing can affect someones credit depends on how their credit was prior to filing. If you are delinquent on a number of accounts, your credit score is most likely already decreasing each month with the negative reporting on your credit. If you file personal bankruptcy with a credit score that is already going down, your score will not be affected drastically. On the other hand, if you have a good credit score prior to filing, you will see a more dramatic hit on your credit score post-filing.
A bankruptcy filing may stay on your credit report for up to ten years, but there are ways to help build up your credit score even with the filing on your report.
What Is A Bankruptcy Means Test
The objective of the Bankruptcy Means Test is to determine who is eligible to apply for debt forgiveness through a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. It considers your:
- income and expenses
- household size and composition
- debt-to-income ratio
If you do not qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you will be able to file for Chapter 13, as above-described.
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Bankruptcy Forms For Annapolis Maryland
There are about 23 federal forms involved in a bankruptcy filing, not including the local and optional forms that you might need for your case.
The Petition is a series of different forms that outline your financial resources and obligations. It is how you show that you are unable to make ends meet. At filing, you will need to present a few other documents including your certificate of financial counseling, your redacted tax returns and pay stubs.
For a comprehensive overview of the voluntary petition, A/B, C, D, E/F, G, H, I, J, or other forms read the. Below are details for state and local unique forms.
If you feeel overwhelmed or want assistance,check out Upsolve’s free bankruptcy assistance and see if youâre a good fit for our service. We have a free service that makes the bankruptcy process super simple for residents of Maryland.
Estimate Whether You Will Qualify For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy In Maryland
As stated above, you often have to qualify to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Qualification is based on US means testing. The means testing is based on the household income and size of the household for Maryland.
Bankruptcy Means Test In Maryland
The bankruptcy means test in Maryland often changes every 6 months. To help, we built the following bankruptcy means test calculator to help you estimate qualification, understand the cost and compare bankruptcy alternatives.
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