One of the most disconcerting things about the Coronavirus is how the government has shut down many businesses putting thousands of Americans out of work. Sadly, one of the consequences of this will be people who are forced to file for bankruptcy.
Whether you are a business owner, or an individual who has been hard-hit, here are some things to consider as you look at your finances.
There are two types of consumer bankruptcy: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Both types will stay on your financial record for several years. Although you may file for bankruptcy pro se, or on your own, hiring a bankruptcy attorney is really your best bet.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy runs for three to five years; it is more of a reorganization of your debts. For instance, if you have a steady income but you’re behind on a house or a car payment, Chapter 13 will let some debts be discharged while setting up a payment plan for others.
In Chapter 13, when you complete all of your payment plans, your bankruptcy will be discharged. It can be on your credit record for five to ten years.
Chapter 7 is a shorter bankruptcy and can take around 6 months to file as long as you have no assets that a trustee could sell to settle your debts. Chapter 7 will remain on your credit record for seven to ten years.
If you do file for bankruptcy, what happens if you forget to list a creditor? It does happen, and this is where an attorney will help you. Your attorney will give you a list of things you will need to gather and the deadlines on which everything is due to be filed. There is more than one deadline in these cases.
Many people fear the stigma of filing for bankruptcy to escape debt. But if you have no other options, it is also a good way to help yourself and your family.
If you have questions about Bankruptcy laws, please consult our Online Legal Directory to find an attorney in your area.