Bankruptcy Lawyer Nashville TN
Helping Individuals, Married Couples & Small Businesses
The Law Office of Atwood & McVay helps individuals, married couples, and small businesses in financial need. We design creative solutions to our client’s debt problems and can stop creditors and bill collectors from making your life miserable. You can find peace of mind and the chance to get a fresh start in life.
When our clients call us, they are often distraught and have considered bankruptcy only as a last resort. By the time the process is completed, many wonder why they did not seek help sooner. As soon as your bankruptcy case is filed, the calls, lawsuits, wage garnishments, and repossession/foreclosure threats stop.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a type of bankruptcy that eliminates most debts and allows an individual to make a fresh financial start. While Chapter 7 is considered to be a liquidation of debts, the vast majority of our clients are able to keep and maintain payments on their home and vehicles.
Not everyone qualifies for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and there are a number of factors considered in making that determination. During your free consultation with our office, we will take a detailed look at the entirety of your particular situation and determine what solutions are best for you. If Chapter 7 bankruptcy is not appropriate to meet your goals, Chapter 13 bankruptcy is often a viable alternative.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a type of bankruptcy that reorganizes your debt. A manageable repayment plan is established by the court that typically spans from three to five years.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is often a good option for people who have steady, monthly income, but have fallen behind on assets that they wish to keep. This type of bankruptcy ends the threats of foreclosure and repossession, and gives people an opportunity to save their homes and vehicles.
If you or someone you know needs our help, please call us today for a free consultation.
Is Bankruptcy Right for Me?
Here are 10 easy steps to determine if bankruptcy is right for you.
1. Figure out Your Options
The two most common types of bankruptcy are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Chapter 7 bankruptcy can wipe out most of your debt in a short period of time, however you might lose some of your property. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is more complicated but basically outlines a repayment method based on your income in order to pay your debts over a five year period.
2. Consider Your Alternatives
Many unnecessary bankruptcies are filed each year. Needless to say, bankruptcy is not for everyone. Before making the decision you should review your financial documents and consider your current situation carefully. Sometimes a few simple changes can make all the difference in fixing financial troubles.
3. Ensure You’re Eligible to File for Bankruptcy
There are requirements that must be met in order to file for bankruptcy. If your income is high enough to pay your debts through chapter 13 then you may not file for chapter 7 bankruptcy. Likewise if your income is too low and you would be unable to pay your debts through chapter 13 then you must file for chapter 7.
4. Find Out Which of Your Debts Will and Won’t Be Forgiven
Bankruptcy cannot reconcile all debts, no matter which type of bankruptcy you file for. Debts such as child support, alimony, and tax debts cannot be forgiven. If these are your your debts then, unfortunately, filing for bankruptcy will not help you. Ensure the debts you have can be forgiven through bankruptcy.
5. Consider Your Home
You should consider what might happen to your home before you file for bankruptcy. If you’re having trouble making the mortgage payment on your home, bankruptcy may free up some of your income to make those payments. However, if you already have a lot of equity invested in your house, you may lose your house if you file for chapter 7. If your income is high you may be able to include your mortgage payments on your repayment plan through chapter 13.
6. Figure Out What Will Happen to Other Property You Own
Before filing you should study the property exemption laws carefully to ensure you keep the property you need. If you put up your boat or car as collateral on a loan, this secures the loand and the creditor may still be able to take that property even if you are in bankruptcy.
7. Find Out if Cred Card Debt Will be Cleared
Bankruptcy can be an effective way to wipe out credit card debt. You should figure out if your debt will be wiped out before you file. Credit Card debt may not be cleared if you lied on your credit card application your spent well beyond what you should have.
8. Ensure Your Life Insurance and Pension Plans are Safe
State laws protect most life insurance and pension plans during bankruptcy. However, it’s still a good idea to find out whether these funds and policies will be affected.
9. Make Sure Co-Signers Don’t Receive Your Debt
To ensure that no co-signers of loans get stuck with your debt, you should go back through all your debt agreements. Chapter 13 generally protects co-signers from having to pay your debts, but chapter 7 does not. Going through bankruptcy proceedings just to find out a friend or family member is now stuck with your debt can be very depressing.
10. Prepare for Your Personal Life to be Invaded
Bankruptcies are an intrusive process and as such you must show the bankruptcy court every aspect of your life. Other people will most likely find out that you are going through bankruptcy. If you file for chapter 7 it is very likely that some of your personal property will be seized and sold in order to pay your debts. In chapter 13 bankruptcy, you’ll probably have to ask permission from the court to spend your money on major purchases.