General Info on Bankruptcy
When facing financial difficulties the consideration of filing for bankruptcy protection is a difficult and often times emotional decision. With the current economic conditions many people are finding themselves unable to meet the financial obligations they were once able to meet. Understanding that sometimes good people find themselves in overwhelming financial problems the Law Office of John J. Lutgens, is here to help you in determining whether bankruptcy is a viable option. We will provide you with the guidance necessary to allow you to make the right choice for your specific situation.
What is a Chapter 7 bankruptcy?
Chapter 7 bankruptcy, is considered a liquidation of your assets. Frequently referred to as a “Fresh Start Bankruptcy” this filing is where an individual is relieved of his or her “dischargeable debts”. A trustee appointed by the Court will review an individual or couple’s assets and debts and determine what assets may be kept by you and what debts can be discharged. For the vast majority of individuals who simply want to eliminate their heavy debt burden without paying any of it back, Chapter 7 provides the most attractive choice.
What is a Chapter 13 bankruptcy?
Under a chapter 13 bankruptcy, a debtor proposes a 3-5 year repayment plan to the creditors offering to pay off all or part of the debts from the debtor’s future income. You can use Chapter 13 to prevent a house foreclosure; make up missed car or mortgage payments; pay back taxes; stop interest from accruing on your tax debt (local, Washington state, or federal); keep valuable non-exempt property. To file Chapter 13 bankruptcy you must have a “regular source of income” and have some disposable income to apply towards your Chapter 13 payment plan.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is generally used by debtors who want to keep secured assets, such as a home or car, when they have more equity in the secured assets than they can protect with their Washington bankruptcy exemptions. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is defined as a reorganization as compared to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy referred to as a liquidation.
Whether a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 filing is the right choice for you, we will review your financial situation and advise you as to what your choices are. To find out more information as to which alternative is best for you call us at 360-693-2119 or send us an e-mail.