Bankruptcy Attorney

Houston Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Lawyer

Chapter 13 Texas

You can get some relief if you are drowning in debt during these tough times. Filing for bankruptcy can help wipe out part of your debt and stop all aggressive collection efforts from creditors.  But since there is more than one type of bankruptcy, you may want to talk to a bankruptcy lawyer to know what type of bankruptcy is appropriate for you. Individuals that are overwhelmed with debt but still have a steady income can file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. A Houston Chapter 13 bankruptcy lawyer can answer all your questions and guide you toward financial security.

How A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Works

Individuals in debt can only file for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. You have to file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy if you have a regular monthly income and significant assets. You can only file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy if your unsecured debt is not more than $394,725 and your secured debt is not more than $1,184,200.

 A Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a debt reorganization bankruptcy. What that means is that you have to present a debt reorganization plan to settle what you owe when you file for a Chapter 13. The reorganization plan must show the amount you will be paying every month, and the payment plan must last for three to five years. Under a Chapter 13 repayment plan, you will repay all of your secured debt and a fraction of your unsecured debt. Once the repayment period in your plan ends, any remaining dischargeable debt will be wiped out. The amount you pay each month is determined by your monthly income. 

Secured Vs Unsecured Debt

Houston Chapter 13 Bankruptcy LawyerSecured debt is a kind of debt that is backed by collateral such as your home or your car. This means that when you can no longer make monthly payments for your home or car, the lender may seize the collateral and sell it to recoup losses. However, when you file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the lender cannot seize your house or car but will have to agree to your repayment plan. An unsecured debt is debt that is not secured by any collateral such as a credit card purchase. A creditor may seize your non-exempt property if you fail to repay what you owe.

How A Chapter 13 Helps You

A Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows homeowners that are behind on mortgage payments to save their homes from foreclosure. By filing for this bankruptcy, homeowners can catch up on the mortgage debts gradually. Another advantage of Chapter 13 is that you get to consolidate all your payments into one monthly check which you send to a trustee. The trustee will take this check and pay all your creditors. 

You can also negotiate with the creditor to lower the payment amounts. Creditors are not allowed to go after a co-debtor if you have filed for bankruptcy. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy also looks better on your credit report because you repay most of the debt by filing for a Chapter 13. I you are not sure how to go about filing for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, talk to an experienced Houston Chapter 13 bankruptcy lawyer to help you navigate the process.

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Bankruptcy Attorney

Best Houston Bankruptcy Lawyers

Bankruptcy Lawyer Houston

A bankruptcy may not be the perfect solution for your financial problems but it can help you get a fresh financial start. It is usually the only path available for people or businesses that have substantial debt that they cannot repay. A knowledgeable and dedicated bankruptcy lawyer can evaluate your case and advise you on the type of bankruptcy that can bring you relief. Your lawyer can also advise you whether or not you should file for bankruptcy in the first place.

Types Of Bankruptcy

Individuals can file for either a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. In, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, some of the debtor’s property is liquidated and the proceeds are given to creditors, and most of the debtor’s unsecured debt is wiped out. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the debtor is required to file a plan to repay creditors over time from current income. People who don’t qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy often end up filing for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. In most case, these are people who have a regular monthly income. A Chapter 11 bankruptcy is reserved for struggling businesses while a Chapter 12 bankruptcy is for family farmers.

Do You Qualify For A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Your bankruptcy lawyer will help you in your means test to determine whether you should opt for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. You can only qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy if your income is less than the median income in Texas. So a means test is just a calculation of your income, expenses, and family size, and then comparing the result of that calculation with the median income of Texas. Some individuals that seem to have an income higher than the median income can still qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy after deducting expenses. People who file for a Chapter 13 do not have to take the means test.

What You Need To Do Before Filing For Bankruptcy

People seeking to file for bankruptcy must first pay for and attend a court-approved credit-counseling course before filing. You may only have to pay about $30 to attend these courses. A credit counseling course is meant to give you an idea of whether you should file for bankruptcy or opt for a repayment plan. You can take the course online or in the offices of your lawyer’s law firm.

Another thing is that you have to fully disclose all your debts and assets for you to file for bankruptcy. The following are the assets you must disclose:

  • Personal property
  • Home 
  • financial accounts
  • All your vehicles
  • Stocks 
  • All personal possessions

You must also disclose all your debts such as mortgages, credit cards, student loans and other debts. A skillful and experienced Houston Bankruptcy lawyer can help you fully disclose all these assets and debts. Not fully disclosing all the information required can lead to a criminal prosecution.

How Your Bankruptcy Lawyer Can Help

Apart from helping you gather all the documentation required when you are filing for bankruptcy, you lawyer will also be by your side during the creditors’ meeting. Your lawyer will guide you on how to answer the questions creditors ask you during the creditors’ meeting.  In fact, your lawyer can help you navigate the entire bankruptcy process.


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