For most people living in Downriver Michigan, money has never been too easy to come by. Hard work, two person incomes, extra shifts and multiple jobs are often necessary. But even with those extra hours, sometimes there’s just not enough money to cover ALL of life’s expenses. The stress of managing too few dollars for too many bills on a day in, day out basis is overwhelming! In fact, the number one marital problem is money management. From healthcare bills and credit card debt, to car loans and child care payments; mortgages and refinancing, with reduced hours and downsizing, sometimes there’s nothing else to do but consider the relief offered by the Bankruptcy Court. No one EVER wants to consider bankruptcy, however, the laws affording relief have been developed for good reason. Both debtors and creditors are protected from losing even more money in the future.
Do you live in Allen Park and have excessive Credit card debt? Or are you working in Woodhaven with embarrassing wage garnishments? Do your co-workers in Flat Rock know about the lawsuit threats, collection efforts and IRS levies? And your neighbors in Grosse Ile – Do they see the repeated utility outages and know about the phone, internet and cable shutoffs from their kid’s visits to your home? Or have the relatives in Taylor seen the foreclosure notices or watched as your recreation and vehicles been repossessed? Maybe no one in Wyandotte knows about the harassing phone calls and letters, property liens, marital strife and constant stress, but you know about it all too well. You live with it every day. Bankruptcy can provide relief and may be your best option.
So what relief can filing for Bankruptcy offer?
The best thing about declaring bankruptcy is that it WILL put an end to threatening calls, stop tax liens and wage garnishments, and for a time, halt foreclosure or repossession proceedings. That relief in itself is crucial to reducing your daily stress level and allowing you to better evaluate how to move forward financially. Depending on how you file for bankruptcy relief, you may even be able to protect valuable property – such as your home and vehicles.
For individuals, there are two main options:
Chapter 7 relief allows for the liquidation of your assets and dismissal of your unsecured debt;
Chapter 13 relief gives you the opportunity to restructure your debt – so that you can pay off certain debts over time – typically 3 -5 years. You can also better protect your key assets. And provided you pay as per the terms established by the Bankruptcy Court, the remainder of your dischargeable debt is dismissed at the end of the restructure time period.
You may also have heard about Chapter’s 9 and 11, but as they only apply to companies or organizations – not individuals, they are not addressed in this article.
There’s a LOT of information available at http://www.mieb.uscourts.gov/understanding-bankruptcy which not only directs you to The Bankruptcy Judges Division’s Public Information Series for Bankruptcy Basic information, but also provides court-specific information for the United States Bankruptcy Court – Eastern Michigan Division.
How can you know what to do? Consult with an expert. Someone who understands exactly what situations are best served by filing for Bankruptcy; who knows precisely what will happen in a bankruptcy proceeding; someone who can properly advise you and lead you to a better future. While you can appear and file by yourself, be aware that you may not be able to adequately represent your own interests.
“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.” (emphasis added)
Contact Downriver Lawyer today! Downriver Lawyer offers a free consultation, will review your debt to asset ratio and help you determine the best action to take today. Get relief and don’t lose any more money unnecessarily.