Many individuals who file for bankruptcy do so under Chapter 13, which allows them to repay some or all of their debt over the period of three to five years before discharging the remainder of their debt. Some people with extreme debts may be incapable of making payments at all and this may be a result of lost income or simply due to the overwhelming nature of their debts. In these situations, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be the wisest decision.
Who can file for Chapter 7 in Marietta, GA?
Those Who Have Not Filed Recently
Only those that have not filed a Chapter 7 within the last 8 years or a Chapter 13 in the past 6 years are able to file for a Chapter 7 again. In the same way, you also cannot file again if you attempted to file within the last 180 days, but was dismissed because of three different factors, including:
- Your case was determined to be fraudulent or abusive towards the bankruptcy process according to a court ruling
- Your actions were in direct violation of a court order
- The case was dismissed because one of your creditors asked to put an end to the automatic stay agreement
Those Below the Median Income Level
The first step in filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy is to take a means test. Unless it is proven that you cannot afford to repay your debt based on your income and other factors, you cannot file under this chapter. Your income will be measured against the median income of a family living in your state that is comparable in size to your own family. If your average income from the last 6 months is less than or equal to the median income, you are considered eligible for Chapter 7.
In cases where your income is too high for Chapter 7, the court will determine how much disposable income you have in order to pay off some or all of your debt in a Chapter 13 plan should you choose to go that route. The court looks at your income and subtracts debt payments, living expenses and any other required payments to see what amount you can feasibly pay off each month.
Completing the Chapter 7 Process
Once a means test proves that you are eligible and you come up clean in all of the other areas determining eligibility, you must fill out all necessary forms and petition for property exemptions so that you can keep any necessary items, such as furniture or your car. This process is not simple, and a mistake could cause further harm, so make sure that you retain an educated Georgia bankruptcy attorney with years of experience in Chapter 7 laws and procedures. With such legal assistance, discharging your debt could result in the financial freedom that you’ve been dreaming of achieving.
Cobb County Bankruptcy Firm with Extensive Experience
If you are seeking to have your debt discharged through Chapter 7 bankruptcy, consult for free with a Cobb County bankruptcy attorney from Cherney Law Firm LLC. Since 2006, I have represented individuals in more than 2,000 bankruptcy cases and helped them find the relief that they needed. To learn how I can help you, fill out the online evaluation form or call my office for a free consultation. I look forward to hearing from you and discussing your legal options with you.