Chapter 7 Bankruptcy (Liquidation Bankruptcy)
Many people informally use the term “bankruptcy” to refer to Chapter 7. This form of bankruptcy theoretically involves liquidating assets to pay creditors while discharging most unsecured debts. As a practical matter, virtually all debtors who file for Chapter 7 relief keep all of their assets because of the extensive exemption system. An Indianapolis Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney at Eskew Law LLC will work with clients throughout Central Indiana to maximize these exemptions, so it is rare that any assets need to be surrendered. Through effective pre-bankruptcy planning, she can even provide advice regarding converting non-exempt assets into exempt assets in a manner that will not get you into hot water.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy will not eliminate secured debts like mortgages or car payments, but it will eliminate most forms of unsecured debt, such as:
- Balances on credit cards
- Unpaid medical bills and hospital expenses
- Department store charge accounts
- Unsecured loans and credit lines
- Outstanding utility bill balances
- Unpaid cell phone bills
While a Chapter 7 discharge can eliminate many forms of unsecured debt, “priority unsecured debts” must be paid in full like secured debts. In any event, you should consult an experienced Indianapolis bankruptcy lawyer to better understand the specifics of your financial situation. Examples of priority unsecured debts include:
- Child support, alimony and other support-related family court obligations
- Tax obligations except income tax under certain circumstances
- Student loans with narrow exceptions
- Obligations related to drunk driving civil judgments and settlements
- Court imposed fines and sanctions
Even if you have a significant amount of debt that has priority status, Chapter 7 bankruptcy can relieve you of the obligation to pay much of your unsecured debt, so you have more available income to pay obligations like child support arrearages. If you are looking to file for bankruptcy but want to keep as much of your property as possible, you may want to consider Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Call to Schedule a Consultation with a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyer in Indianapolis, IN
Eskew Law LLC works with clients throughout Central Indiana. To schedule a consultation with an Indianapolis Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney, call our office at (317) 974-0177 or contact us online. We offer flexible scheduling and payment options to meet your needs.