Delaware Bankruptcy Attorney - Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Obtain A Fresh Start
The goal with any bankruptcy is to obtain a discharge of most, if not all indebtedness. A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy allows a consumer debtor to discharge most unsecured debts. An unsecured creditor has no collateral securing the debt you owe (for example most credit cards). Not all consumer debtors qualify for a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy.
In order to qualify for a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, you must pass some tests. First, we look at your assets and their fair market value. Your equity, or value of your property minus debt owed against it, must be below what the applicable Delaware and federal laws allow a consumer debtor to exempt. If the equity in your assets exceeds the state exemptions and you do not have the ability to repay that equity in a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, you will be required to surrender and/or liquidate those assets in the bankruptcy process.
Second, your income and necessary expenses will be examined to determine whether you have the ability to pay back some creditors. If you do have the ability to pay back some of your creditors, you may have to file a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy.
Also, you may not be able to file for bankruptcy if you have filed for bankruptcy protection in the past. If you have previously received a Chapter 7 discharge, you will not be eligible for another discharge within the 8 year period from your previous filing.
How Do I File & What Happens Next?
Every consumer debtor considering bankruptcy has the absolute right to represent him or herself in the bankruptcy process. The applicable laws and the process itself, however, can be difficult for the lay person to successfully navigate. An experienced Delaware bankruptcy lawyer is best suited to guide you through the process.
After filing your bankruptcy, you are protected by the Bankruptcy Court's automatic stay. Your creditors may no longer contact you after you file without first seeking permission from the court. After filing your petition, you will have a court hearing with a bankruptcy trustee. The bankruptcy trustee reviews your petition to ensure its accuracy and asks questions to determine your ability to pay back creditors.
If there are no objections by the trustee or by any of your creditors, you will be afforded a Chapter 7 discharge within a few months. Your discharge will rid you of all unsecured debt except those debts which are explicitly listed as not dischargeable by the Bankruptcy Code.