Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is a legal action in which you file a petition with the Federal Bankruptcy court listing all of your debts and assets. As a general rule, you will be able to protect and keep most of your property including your home, car and personal possessions. As your Bankruptcy Attorney, my job is to ensure that you keep as many of your possessions as the law allows. What you can keep and cannot keep is determined by both State and Federal Law. The good news is there are exemptions. Exemptions allow you to protect real and personal property to an allowable set dollar amount which is set by the Law. California State Law determines which property is exempt.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy gives you protection from your Creditors under what is called the Automatic Stay. Once your Bankruptcy petition is filed with the court, your creditors will receive notice of your bankruptcy filing by the court. Once they have been notified they cannot legally continue with their collection, foreclosure, repossession, wage garnishments or lawsuits against you. They are not allowed to contact you in any form without court approval or written approval by your attorney.
Within about 45 days of filing your petition you and your spouse (if one) will be required to attend a court hearing called the “First meeting of Creditors.” I will represent you at this meeting or hire someone to appear on my behalf for you. During the hearing, a Trustee, who represents all the Creditors, will ask you specific questions regarding your financial affairs. There will not be a judge present in the room. One of the trustees jobs is to ensure that you don’t have any additional assets not listed in your bankruptcy petition that may be sold and the proceeds from the sale divided amongst your creditors. This is why it is imperative that you disclose all of your assets in your bankruptcy petition. Within three months of your court hearing, generally, you will receive your final discharge and it will be entered with the court. Discharge means that your bankruptcy filing has been approved and you are no longer required to pay the creditors to whom you previously owed money to. This also explains why it is imperative you list all of your Creditors in your bankruptcy petition so all of your allowable debt is discharged. Once you receive your discharge letter and your case is closed, you can breathe a sigh of relief and move on with your life to a new beginning!
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Questionnaire
Click and print this PDF questionnaire and fill out as completely as possible. Once you have filled out the questionnaire and gather the documents above that pertain to you, please call our office for an appointment (866)411-6659 or email Melissa at: firstname.lastname@example.org