The decision to file bankruptcy is not an easy one. Unfortunately, job loss, illness and even divorce can wreak havoc on your financial status leaving you with no real options.
Understanding Basic Requirements
A first step for anyone who is considering filing bankruptcy is a means test. Your South Carolina bankruptcy attorney can help you fill out the necessary forms. This test is designed to help determine whether your best option is to file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. In addition, all filers must complete a credit counseling course, before filing and a debtor education course before the bankruptcy is discharged.
Understanding the Means Test
One of the biggest myths about the means test is that those considering filing bankruptcy must not own any assets to qualify for Chapter 7. This is simply not true; the means test is designed to ensure those who have sufficient income to repay a portion of their debts are barred from using Chapter 7 to erase their debts.
Understanding the Bankruptcy Chapters
Chapter 7 bankruptcy allows those who are eligible to eliminate non-secured debt. This includes medical debt, credit card debt and other revolving debt. This will not eliminate debt for past-due child support, judgments nor in most cases will it eliminate tax debt. Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows for a restructuring of debt. Under Chapter 13, the petitioner must submit a plan to the court to repay most debt within three to five years.
Under South Carolina bankruptcy law, those filing bankruptcy may use the exemptions allowed under South Carolina statutes. This allows filers the opportunity of keeping their home, some personal property, retirement accounts and other specific property. Our attorney will explain these exemptions to you.
The decision to file bankruptcy is not an easy one but in some cases, it may be the best alternative to alleviate the stress and strain of overwhelming debt. A bankruptcy attorney can help you determine which chapter of the bankruptcy code is best for your individual needs and help you file the proper forms with the court. If you are considering bankruptcy in South Carolina, you need a competent attorney who will help you through the process. Contact Bradley Law Firm, LLC at (843) 571-4611 for assistance.