What is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a court process that is designed to wipe out credit card debt, medical debt, and other types of unsecured debts for people who can no longer afford to repay them.
Also known as “straight bankruptcy” for the quick and simple process, Chapter 7 bankruptcy is legally referred to as a “liquidation” because a bankruptcy trustee can liquidate (sell) a filer’s non-exempt assets to cover part of the outstanding bills they owe.
But don’t panic–most Chapter 7 bankruptcy filers get to keep all of their property because most filers don’t have any non-exempt assets, and thus there’s no actual liquidation.
If you’re thinking about filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy, talk to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyer today about your options. Arrange a free, no-obligation initial consultation to learn about your options.
The Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Process
How Long Does a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case Take?
Most Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases move relatively quickly. It’s possible that you could receive your discharge within three or four months.
A Chapter 7 discharge refers to the successful removal of unsecured debts like credit card debt, medical bills, most personal loans, judgments resulting from car accidents, deficiencies on repossessed vehicles, some older tax debts, payday loans and wage garnishments.
Certain debts are classified as “non-dischargeable” debts, which means they can’t be discharged or can only be discharged under special circumstances like child support, most student loans and many tax debts.
Steps to Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Step 1: Qualifying to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Step 2: Mandatory Credit Counseling Briefing
Step 3: Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Step 4: Mandatory Debtor Education Course
Step 5: Chapter 7 Debt Discharge
How Much Does it Cost to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
If you’re interested in filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you’re likely wondering about how much the process will cost.
As of June 2009, the Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing fee is $306.
This price is subject to change and any changes will be on the U.S. Bankruptcy Court’s official Web site. Keep in mind this is the court filing fee and doesn’t include any Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyer fees.
Is Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Right for Me?
Not sure whether you should file bankruptcy? Fill out the free form on this page or call 877-226-6844 to connect with a lawyer for free.
We’ll connect you with a sponsoring local Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney. A bankruptcy lawyer can explain your right to protection under the bankruptcy law.
A bankruptcy lawyer can further discuss why Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be the right option for those who:
- have no income or low income
- have little or no money left after paying necessary living expenses each month
- have few assets (or no assets) outside furniture, clothing and other necessities
- rent or have little equity in their home
Talk to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyer today to discuss the benefits of filing bankruptcy in more detail.