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How To File Bankruptcy In Cleveland Ohio

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Collateral

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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.

What To Expect When Selling My House Before Filing For Chapter 7 Or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Its important to understand that there are many risks involved in selling your house before filing for bankruptcy. First of all, selling your home before filing for Chapter 7 with the intent of avoiding paying your lenders could lead to very serious fraud charges.

However, some homeowners are able to legally sell before they file as long as they follow the correct procedures. If youre permitted to sell your house, well buy it in a simple and hassle-free transaction.

How To Select A Cleveland Bankruptcy Attorney

Like most things in life, there is a happy medium when it comes to Cleveland bankruptcy attorneys. Lets face it, youre already going through a tough time so youre probably not going to want to slap down all the money you have saved under your mattress just for a bankruptcy lawyer. On the other hand, you dont necessarily want to go with the lowest cost bankruptcy attorney because theres probably a reason why they charge so little.

Some people think they can go it alone and try filing themselves, only to get denied. Sometimes people go with a bankruptcy attorney who is cheap and then they end up actually losing more money in the process. Inexpensive lawyers might not always be available for you, be able to answer all your questions, or have the experience and/or knowledge to help you get the best result for your case.

In contrast, the most sought after bankruptcy attorneys who charge the highest fees might not have the time to give you personal attention. They might even be neglectful of your case because theyre busy working on more important cases.

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Secured Debt Vs Unsecured Debt: What’s The Difference

Secured debt. A secured debt is backed up by property — like your home or a car — which is also known as “collateral.” The creditor can take back the collateral if you don’t repay the debt.

Secured debt can be voluntary — for example, when you get a mortgage to buy real estate or a loan to buy a car. It can also be involuntary — say, if the government puts a lien on your property for back taxes.

Unsecured debt. Unsecured debt isn’t backed up by collateral. Lenders give you credit without “security,” relying on your credit history and your promise to repay. Unsecured debt can include everything from your credit cards to your gym membership, your medical bills to a loan from a friend.

In bankruptcy, unsecured debt is divided into priority and non-priority claims. If there’s any money available to pay your creditors, priority claims come first. Non-priority unsecured debts are rarely paid in bankruptcy.

Common priority unsecured debts include:

  • legal fees related to the bankruptcy filing
  • child support and alimony
  • federal or state income taxes
  • a certain amount of wages and benefits owed to employees, and
  • claims against you for operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

To learn more, see our articles on How to File for Bankruptcy.

File Motions Objections Or Responses

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You may never need to worry about this, but theres a chance that you will want to file additional paperwork after you submit your bankruptcy petition. For example, you may want to file a request to remove creditors claims against your property. Or, if a creditor says that you owe more than you think you do, you may want to file an objection with the court.

Depending on the complexity of the situation, this is another place that you might want the advice and assistance of a bankrupcy lawyer. If youre handling your own case and you want to learn more about the situations that may arise after you file, you can turn to a detailed guidebook like How to File for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy or Chapter 13: Keep Your Property and Repay Your Debts Over Time.

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Official Form: 106 Personal Property

The bankruptcy petition includes a long and detailed list of different categories of personal property that must be listed. Some of the property is self-explanatory. Some are not.

It is mandatory to list any cash on hand, including cash kept at home safely or in a safe deposit box. Bank balances on the date of filing must be listed, and proof of the amount in the account provided to the trustee. Checks that have been written but not cleared may not count in most cases. Money owed to you must be disclosed even if you dont expect that youll ever be able to collect it.

Household goods and furnishings have to be listed in enough detail so that the trustee can determine whether or not an exemption protects each item of property that you own. Therefore, there should be a detailed listing, along with the current value of the property as well.

Books, pictures and art objects, coin collections, and other collections must be disclosed along with their current value. Sometimes, its appropriate to get an appraisal for these items if necessary or helpful to accurately understand their value.

Firearms sports equipment and other hobby equipment must be listed with the current resale value. Firearms often get special attention from trustees because the values of these items have increased recently.

Annuities and Retirement Plans.

Stocks bonds and interest in business.

What Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is known as liquidation bankruptcy. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy process involves the selling of all the debtors non-exempt assets. The sale of assets generates funds to pay off as much of the debtors debts as possible.

During the bankruptcy process, Ohio courts impose a stay that prohibits creditors from trying to collect on their debts. That means those creditors cant contact the debtor about a debt. Nor can they file for foreclosure on the debtors home or seek to collect on a debt, repossess assets, or garnish wages and bank accounts.

Once the debtors estate is liquidated and used to pay off debts, the bankruptcy court will discharge any remaining debts. When that is done, the creditors can no longer collect on those debts. However, some types of debts, such as student loan debt and child support obligations, cannot be discharged in bankruptcy.

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What Bankruptcy Issues Can I Get Help With

At Luftman, Heck & Associates, we are committed to providing our clients with effective and personalized representation as they enter bankruptcy proceedings. Effectively managing the bankruptcy process can ensure your financial security for years to come. You can learn more about bankruptcy and the services we provide by reading below.

The Ohio bankruptcy lawyers of Luftman, Heck & Associates understand how stressful and confusing filing for bankruptcy can be. If you are considering filing for bankruptcy, it is likely that you are facing overwhelming financial issues. Our goal is not just to help you get the best out of your bankruptcy, but also to take the stress and confusion out of these complicated procedures. To learn more about how we can help you specifically, call us today for a free and confidential consultation of your case.

The Secret History Of The Credit Card

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The issues covered in this 2004 documentary are still current, and worth watching. It’s an excellent recounting by PBS and The New York Times of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling almost 20 years ago opened the door to abusive lending practices and the rise of the modern credit card industry. After watching this, you’ll understand why your credit card company is probably based in South Dakota or Delaware.

Excellent report on how lack of regulation allowed “usury” to no longer be a crime, and allowed predatory lenders to sell financial snake-oil all without regulation.

Describes how the inevitable logic of human greed, left unregulated, led banks to make billions by peddling financial snake-oil to naive, cash strapped consumers to sign the equity in their their paid-for houses as collateral for loans they would never be able to pay…. And now whole neighborhoods lie abandoned and falling into ruin, resulting in further loss of wealth base in communities that can ill affford it.

So much for the invisible hand….

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Ohio Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Court Locations

Many 341 meetings of creditors have been over the phone or over Zoom due to the pandemic. That said, you may want to see where the courthouse is in Ohio if there are any meetings that need to take place in person. Below are the court locations for filing bankruptcy based on the bankruptcy district.

David M. Whittaker 340-7431

In addition to the above, review Ohio local bankruptcy rules before filing a bankruptcy case. Some local rules may differ slightly from the Federal Bankruptcy Rules.

Go To Court To File Your Forms

From the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to West Side Market, you likely live in Cleveland partially because you enjoy all it has to offer. One of the advantages of living in Cleveland is that it offers an easy way to file for bankruptcy in person. Clevelandâs impressive Metzenbaum Federal Courthouse located at 201 Superior Avenue. Make sure to plan ahead when filing bankruptcy in Cleveland, as thereâs no public parking lot available. If youâre planning on driving to the Courthouse, make sure to bring cash or a credit card to park in a privately-owned ramp or lot. Also, make sure to bring along a spare set of your bankruptcy forms so the clerk can stamp it for your records.

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Ohio Debt Relief Attorneys

Are you drowning in debt? Our debt settlement lawyers can help.

It is all too easy to get over your head with credit cards, student loans, and other types of debt. If you are ready to take control of your finances, an Ohio debt settlement lawyer can help. We help you understand your debt solution options, whether it is settlement, consolidation, or bankruptcy.

If you want to end the constant stress of collections and creditors, call Luftman, Heck & Associates, LLP. A debt settlement lawyer protects your rights and helps negotiate a solution for your financial problems.

Call LHA today at to schedule your free, no-obligation case evaluation.

Protect Yourself From Unfair Debt Collection Practices

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The fact that you owe money to various companies or organizations does not give anyone the right to relentlessly harass you for payment. There are protections in place under the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act that protect you from unfair debt collection practices, and the regulations creditors must follow are rather strict. To get around these guidelines, some companies employ third party collectors who may be more brazen in their attempts to recover a debt.

This often leads to serious mistakes and violations on their part. With the help of an experienced lawyer who thoroughly understands your rights as a consumer and the protections afforded by the FDCA you may be able to put a stop to their unfair behavior in addition to possibly achieving financial restitution for the harm they may have caused.

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Learn The Basics Of Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy is a legal proceeding created to give people a fresh start after financial disasters. If you’ve explored your alternatives and can’t see a way out from under your debt, bankruptcy may be the right solution for you.

There are two main types of bankruptcy for individuals: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Chapter 7 can wipe out most of your debts in a matter of months in exchange for giving up all of your property that the bankruptcy law does not protect.

Chapter 13 takes three to five years. During that time, you repay some or all of your debts under a payment plan approved by the bankruptcy court. Its often used by people who are behind on mortgage payments and want to use Chapter 13 to catch up. Most folks who file for bankruptcy prefer to file for Chapter 7 if they qualify, because you can get out from under lots of debt in a matter of a few months.

To learn more, see How Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Works and How Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Works.

Us Trustee Program Extends Telephonic Or Video Section 341 Meetings

The U.S. Trustee Program has extended the requirement that section 341 meetings be conducted by telephone or video appearance to all cases filed during the period of the Presidents Proclamation on Declaring a National Emergency Concerning the Novel Coronavirus Disease Outbreak issued March 13, 2020, and ending on the date that is 60 days after such declaration terminates. However, the U.S. Trustee may approve a request by a trustee in a particular case to continue the section 341 meeting to an in-person meeting in a manner that complies with local public health guidance, if the U.S. Trustee determines that an in-person examination of the debtor is required to ensure the completeness of the meeting or the protection of estate property. This policy may be revised at the discretion of the Director of the United States Trustee Program.

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What Different Types Of Bankruptcies Are There

There are two main types of bankruptcies for consumers:

Chapter 7 is a liquidation of assets followed by a discharge of debt. It is perhaps what you normally think of when you think of bankruptcy. Upon filing the bankruptcy, the Court assigns, through the US Department of Justice, an attorney called the Trustee. The Trustees job is to examine what you own and see if anything can be sold to pay any of your debt back, even if it is not the full amount. In exchange for a selling of your assets, you receive a total discharge of your debt, meaning that creditor can never take any action to collect on that debt you owe him or her ever again.

Chapter 13 is essentially a consolidation payment plan. Rather than selling any of your property, you are promising to pay some or all of your debt back over the course of time . You would file a Chapter 13 rather than a Chapter 7 when you have some property that you consider too valuable to lose in a liquidation, when you make too much money to qualify for a Chapter 7, or when you want a payment plan to help pay the arrears on a secured debt, like when you fall behind on your mortgage payments. In order to file a Chapter 13, you need to have enough income to make the plan work, so you need enough income for your normal expenses plus whatever the plan payments may be.

Other types of bankruptcies not necessarily for consumers that you may have heard of include Chapter 11 or Chapter 12 .

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How Do I Find Out If My Bankruptcy Case Is Closed In Ohio

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A bankruptcy case is considered closed when the Court issues a closing order, which is different from the discharge notice. The Court sends a notice directly to the petitioner notifying of the closure of a bankruptcy case.

Individuals can obtain the status of any bankruptcy cases using PACER to search and retrieve the status of the bankruptcy case. They can also retrieve the status of a bankruptcy case using the Electronic Case Filing system of the particular Bankruptcy Court where the case was filed. Also, individuals can ascertain the status of a bankruptcy case by accessing McVCIS.

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How To Protect Assets From Bankruptcy By Following 5 Important Guidelines

However, there are a few important guidelines that need to be addressed when it comes to asset protection:

  • First, avoid purchasing any major items with a credit card or cash advance after you decide to file bankruptcy
  • Second, dont pay off more than $600 in debt within the three months prior to filing
  • Third, wait to pay off debts or give gifts to any family members until after you get your discharge
  • Fourth, dont transfer any major assets, like a car or house, prior to filing
  • Fifth, make sure youre not going to receive an inheritance, large tax refund or major bonus any time soon.

Cleveland Bankruptcy Attorney Fees

Attorney fees in Cleveland vary based on the attorney you hire. Attorneys charge various fees depending on their quality, availability, experience, and knowledge, among other things.

In Cleveland, attorney fees have a wide range of values, anywhere from as low as $500 to up to $2000 . Other factors that may impact the amount charged depends on whether or not you are able to pay all the costs upfront and whether or not your case ends up being a straight Chapter 7 bankruptcy or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy .

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