There are two types of bankruptcies an individual with normal debts can file. There is a Chapter 7 bankruptcy which is a liquidation bankruptcy, and a Chapter 13 which is a reorganizational bankruptcy. To file either type of bankruptcy, you will need to hire a qualified bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale.
A Chapter 7 forces you to list all of your assets and debts, and after all of your assets are calculated, the court appointed Chapter 7 trustee will say that you have no assets to distribute to creditors or will open an estate to liquidate your assets to pay something to your creditors. In Florida, all debtors who file for bankruptcy get to exempt some if not all of their assets. If you own a homestead (the property where you reside), you will get $1,000.00 of personal property exemptions and $1,000.00 in equity in a vehicle. Personal property includes, but is not limited to, cash on hand, money in all bank accounts, the value of your furniture, clothing, jewelry, any money you can receive from a tax refund, the value of any lawsuits you may be able to bring, the value of any money you may inherit within six months after the Chapter 7 bankruptcy was filed, and any equity you might have in a vehicle after $1,000.00. If you do not own a homestead, you get $5,000.00 in personal property exemptions plus $1,000.00 in equity in a vehicle. If you have assets in excess of those exemptions, the Chapter 7 trustee will open an estate to get as much money as possible to pay your creditors. Debtor’s want to avoid this at all costs. Once the Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee has some money to open an estate, they will look very deeply into the value of your assets to see if there is more money for them to collect. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee might send someone to your house to do an appraisal of your furniture and clothing. That appraiser puts a value on everything. Even if you have plastic spoons and forks, they will put a value on it to increase the amount they can try to collect from you. This is why you need a qualified bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale.
If you do have assets that are in excess of your exemptions, you have the option of filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. A Chapter 13 trustee will not send anyone to your house to do an appraisal. The Chapter 13 trustee will ask for valuations of your vehicle to make sure the value is what you say it is. You can go to Carmax to get a valuation. If you need new tires or any repairs on the vehicle, you can get estimates for the tires or repairs to reduce the value of the vehicle. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale, the Chapter 13 trustees will require a number of documents. You must provide your bank statements for the six months prior to the filing of the Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The Chapter 13 trustees for the bankruptcy filing in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale will ask you for copies of any checks over $1,000.00. They will want an explanation for what the check was written for. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy filed in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale is a very complicated process. It lasts for 3-5 years. It gives you the chance to pay to your creditors over the 3-5 year period the money you would have had to pay them all at once in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. This is called the Chapter 7 test. A qualified bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale will make the process very simple for you. An experienced bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale knows what will be acceptable for either bankruptcy trustee in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale. The attorney you select needs to know the tricks that are acceptable for the specific bankruptcy trustee that is assigned to your case. That’s why it is so important to get an experienced bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale. If you hire the wrong bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale, it could cost you a lot of money. The goal of any experienced bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale is to get your payments as low as possible.
In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale, there are a lot of things you can do to save you money. You must pay the Chapter 7 test amount. There are ways to keep that lower than what you would have to pay to the Chapter 7 trustee if you file the Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale. If you own a vehicle, you may be able to strip the vehicle down to the value of the vehicle rather than what you owe. You can reduce the interest on the loan for the car to 3.25% to 5.25% right now depending on what we are going to do with regard to stripping the repayment. If there is equity in the car, we may be able to reduce the interest to the prime rate, which is 3.25% right now. If we strip the value down to its value, we might have to pay that value at 2 points over prime, which is 5.25% right now. If you are behind on your mortgage, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale can allow you to cure the amounts you are behind. May mortgage lenders unreasonably increase the arrearages by saying their attorney fees are higher than they should be. They may be charging for forced placed insurance when you had insurance on the property. An experienced attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale will be able to file objections to any claims they file. We can make them explain to the court where they get their number from. They must prove everything. An experienced attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale will know how to handle anything that comes up with respect to a proof of claim filed by the mortgage lender. Finally, if there is no equity in your homestead property, you may be able to strip off any second mortgages or association dues. As stated above, a qualified bankruptcy attorney in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale will be able to do this because this is a common practice for those bankruptcy attorneys in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale.