Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyers

With Bankruptcy Offices in Statesboro and Springfield

Chapter 7 is commonly called a liquidation bankruptcy. That is a little misleading. The bankruptcy code allows you to keep certain assets in which you have equity up to dollar amounts as specified in the code. A normal Chapter 7 allow you to obtain a discharge of unsecured debts (excepting student loans) in three to four months. A trustee is appointed to review your case to make sure all debts and assets are correctly listed. There is typically one hearing held called a meeting of creditors at which the trustee reviews your case.

Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyers

With Bankruptcy Offices in Statesboro and Springfield

Chapter 7, according to the United States bankruptcy code, helps with liquidating assets. You will have a trustee appointed to your case to help liquidate assets as needed to pay off creditors. Once you have gone through your available assets to liquidate, you are going to have a debt that remains, which will be repaid over time. This repayment will not be crushing, as it was prior to filing. You must be eligible to file for Chapter 7. For one, you cannot have filed Chapter 7 in the last eight years to move forward. You also have to pass a means test.

Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyers

Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyers

With Bankruptcy Offices in Statesboro and Springfield

Chapter 7, according to the United States bankruptcy code, helps with liquidating assets. You will have a trustee appointed to your case to help liquidate assets as needed to pay off creditors. Once you have gone through your available assets to liquidate, you are going to have a debt that remains, which will be repaid over time. This repayment will not be crushing, as it was prior to filing. You must be eligible to file for Chapter 7. For one, you cannot have filed Chapter 7 in the last eight years to move forward. You also have to pass a means test.

Testimonials

“You helped me restore my faith in so much that looked bleak and decrepit. Along this bumpy road, my lovely daughter is safe, and home, and starting to find peace again…Thank you. All the pieces unfolded and fell into place through a progression only the Lord could have planned. But the people who fulfilled his plan did it through greatness and kindness and strength. In my opinion you and Martha have done Gods work and the Judge came through! I am indebted to you both. Please understand, I can be a force and support as well. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. I still have a long way to go…so I hope that statement is true. My commitment to be there for you is equally strong. It will be a tough journey. I Pray. You guys are amazing. Thank you for everything.”

BONNIE GRINGER

“We were referred to Mike Hall by a friend who told us that if they had used him in the beginning, they would have had a lot better result. Using Mike ourselves, we have had the same experience. Mike is very personable and gave us some very wise council. We could tell he was trying to help us. We have used him for several issues that have come up, and he has always handled them in a professional and timely manner. He is quick to answer emails or phone calls, and takes his time answering all of your questions. We are very pleased with his services and would highly recommend him to anyone who has a legal problem.”

LYNN & PAM KELLEY

“After a two and a half year battle, my son and I got the justice we longed for. The only quality that I didn’t like about Paige was that she was patient. Which, is a very good quality to have. However, hindsight being 20/20, I’m glad she was so patient. Paige and Ashley (her paralegal) were always in communication with me, and responded in a timely and appropriate manner. When opposing counsel started her antics and attempted to berate and take Paige’s eye off the prize, she didn’t allow it. I sincerely appreciate all they did for me and my son. I know my circumstances were extreme, but Paige looked out for the two of us. I highly recommend the law group, and will always be indebted to them.”

DUSTIN SHAW

“This review is in regards to how attorney Martha Hall handled my cases. Before Martha Hall, I was taken advantage of in family court in Jefferson County and Effingham County with sub par attorneys that resulted in rulings that were unfair to me and created headaches and financial difficulties. I experienced three attorneys before Martha Hall. I never felt that I had equal representation in the courthouse, until I discovered Martha Hall. Since I have hired Martha Hall, I have had equal or better representation and my cases have closed with fair rulings. This is solely a result of having Martha Hall as my attorney. I will not change thus moving forward if I need any legal services. She is worth every penny.”

KEN GIBSON

“I just have to say the professionalism and conduct of the Hall and Hall attorneys was fantastic from the time we walked in the door. We met Sarah then Mrs. Martha Hall. They were all very attentive and compassionate. Kara, our paralegal, was always there for us. She was always there via email or phone contact. We had a very sensitive legal case and Mrs. Martha Hall walked us through it with compassion and professionalism. I cannot say enough good things about this group or thank them enough for doing what needed to be done.”

MYA AND DEAN CAPE

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The Workings of a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

One of our Georgia bankruptcy lawyers is going to assist you through the whole process involved in filing for Chapter 7. You have two forms of debt: secured and unsecured.

Secured debt would be something like a mortgage, car loan, furniture debt, etc., while unsecured debt would be something like credit cards, personal notes, some overdue taxes or student loans. Child support and alimony are treated separately.

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What You Need to Know Getting Started

When you file, you have to do credit counseling within six months of filing or else the process will not begin. There will be paperwork that you need to handle including making a petition to the court to officially kick off the proceedings. One of our Georgia chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyers will be able to guide you.

You need to be ready to show your personal information such as your debts from creditors, your assets, income, and what you typically spend in a given period of time.

Once you file, debt collectors are no longer going to be able to call you all the time.

You will have a trustee assigned to oversee your bankruptcy. They are an attorney who is specially appointed to serve as a trustee in a certain geographical area. They are in charge of reviewing your assets and debts.

Problems with Filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

As you may have already understood, you are going to be able to free yourself from a number of the debts that have been causing you stress. It does not come without a cost. Occasionally you are going to have to give up some things to make it work. The law does let you keep some of your properties that are protected, commonly called exempt property.

You may be worried about keeping your home and your car. In a Chapter 7 you have to keep these payments current or the creditor is allowed to ask the court for a right to repossess. If you cannot keep up with the payments. Chapter 7 may not be the call for you. Our Georgia chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyers can help you figure out the best option, as they handle many other types of bankruptcy. Call us right away to discuss alternatives to Chapter 7. Chapter 13 may be more appropriate.

Bankruptcy National Living Allowance: Effective 4/1/2020

Household SizeFood and Housekeeping #7 on Sch. JClothing #9 on Sch. JPersonal Care #10 on Sch. JMisc.Total Allowed
1 Person$426.00$88.00$43.00$170.00$727.00
2 People$757.00$159.00$70.00$302.00$1,288.00
3 People$862.00$169.00$76.00$339.00$1,446.00
4 People$1034.00$243.00$91.00$418.00$1,786.00
5 People$1,275.00$301.00$112.00$518.00$2,206.00
6 People$1,518.00$358.00$133.00$617.00$2,626.00
7 People$1,761.00$415.00$155.00$715.00$3,046.00
8 People$2004.00$472.00$176.00$814.00$3,466.00
Add'l Persons$282.00$0.00$0.00$138.00$420.00

Bankruptcy Means Test Guide

Household SizeAnnual Income
1 Person$50,128.00
2 People$65,007.00
3 People$73,738.00
4 People$87,317.00
5 People$96,317.00
6 People$105,317.00
7 People$114,317.00
8 People$123,317.00
Add'l Persons$9,000.00

What You Need in Order to File for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

When filing any bankruptcy, your income is going to be a factor. There are specific guidelines for income and expenses allowed for individuals filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you make under a certain amount, you automatically qualify for Chapter 7. If you are above a certain threshold as governed by Georgia’s allowances, you will have to complete a “Means Test” to determine your eligibility. The idea is that the court is trying to determine how much you have left over after you paid your monthly expenses. It may turn out that you are not eligible for bankruptcy because of your debt-to-income ratio. One of our Georgia Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyers can help you with this.

The court’s filing fee for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is $335 to file.

Frequently Asked Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Questions

What assets can be protected under chapter 7 bankruptcy What assets can be protected under chapter 7 bankruptcy?

One of the primary questions that our clients ask us is what assets are protected in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia. There’s a term called exempt property. It’s a term that attorneys use that most people would never use in their ordinary language. Exempt assets are basically assets that the state of Georgia has determined that, no matter what happens, you can protect these assets from your creditors.

Georgia has established a particular bankruptcy statute that lines out those assets. For instance, you can protect from $1,500 of equity in your house. You can protect up to $5,000 of equity in an automobile, $2,000 equity if you cash your regular life insurance policy, $1,200 in tools of the trade, $1,200 in other assets that you might have. There’s a smattering of other type of protections.

One of the big protections is retirement plans. You can always protect unlimited amounts of monies in retirement plans that are tax-exempt, for instance, 401(k), your employee provided retirement plan. IRAs and other types of retirement plans are always fully protected. If you have any questions concerning what assets are protected and what assets are not protected, you can give our office a call. We can send you a complete itemization sheet exactly from the Georgia code.

How much does it cost to file chapter 7 bankruptcy?

As with all legal proceedings, one of the questions we hear often is, how much does it cost? A Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia typically costs $1,500 plus the filing fee of $335. Sometimes the cost may be higher depending on the complexity of the case or sometimes it could be lower depending if it’s a very straightforward and simple case. If you have any questions concerning how much it costs to file a bankruptcy, please call our office. We’ll be more than happy to walk you through that.

How long will a chapter 7 bankruptcy take to complete?

One of the questions that a lot of clients ask us is how long a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will last in Georgia. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a relatively quick bankruptcy. Once you come in, put in your paperwork, and then file, you have a meeting of creditors within 30 days after the file. If everything goes like it is planned, there are no objections, and you do not have any dischargeability issues, which 99% of the clients, of course, would not have, you can be out of bankruptcy within three to four months. If you have any questions concerning that, just give us a call.

How do I file a chapter 7 bankruptcy?

One of the initial questions that we always receive regarding bankruptcy is how to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is similar to a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. They’re basically the forms that your attorney would have. You can come into the office and bring in all your information concerning debts, assets, wages, bank statements, income taxes. You sit down with an attorney, and you work through that, and put those into a schedule.

Those schedules are then filed with the bankruptcy court. Once those schedules are accepted by the bankruptcy court, then you have a meeting of creditors held within 30 days after the filing. After that, you will receive your discharge within three to four months afterwards. If you have any questions on how to file a bankruptcy, just give our office a call. We will be happy to help you.

How do I choose the right attorney for a chapter 7 bankruptcy?

One of the questions that we are constantly asked is, how do you choose the right attorney? I would suggest that you research and check on the credentials of the attorney. You want to make sure in Georgia that, if you’re choosing an attorney to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, that attorney has experience in Chapter 7 bankruptcies, Chapter 13 bankruptcies, and what we call consumer bankruptcies. You want to make sure that they know all the ins and out, that they know the trustee, that they know the judges, that they know the rules so that you’re not caught unprepared. If you have any questions, please give our office a call. We will gladly provide you whatever information you need concerning the filing of a Chapter 7.

How can chapter 7 bankruptcy help me How can chapter 7 bankruptcy help me?

One of the questions that we always want to know is how a bankruptcy in Georgia is going to help our clients. In a Chapter 7 situation, a Chapter 7 liquidates or eliminates all unsecured debt such as credit cards, such as personal bills, such as medical bills, delinquent rent, things like that. Now, if you’re going to keep your car, or keep your house, or keep your apartment, of course, you have to keep the current payments made. It doesn’t discharge any debts that are current after the filing of a bankruptcy.

Say, for instance, you were in an automobile wreck and you have a lot of medical bills. Those medical bills are now in collection. A Chapter 7 would discharge those medical bills many times. If you have any questions, please give our office a call. We’d be more than happy to help you.

What persons are not eligible for a chapter 7 discharge?

We often get asked who is eligible or not eligible to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia. With the change in the law in 2005, eligibility for Chapter 7 bankruptcies shifted somewhat. You can not file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia now, for example, if you filed a Chapter 7 within eight years.

If you file a Chapter 13, you can’t file a Chapter 7 for six years after the filing of the Chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or file any sort of bankruptcy and there was what they call a motion of the estate file, which is a proceeding to ask the court to – for the creditor to have possession of collateral. If you dismiss your bankruptcy, then you cannot file for another 180 days. Those are the two big issues regarding eligibility for filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

One other issue that you have to always be concerned with is what they call the means test. Georgia, as well as every other state, have certain criteria which allow people and size of families in set income limits and who cannot file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you’re single, the limit is set at one figure. If you’re a family of five, then your figure is at a different number. You have to run through a computerized program on means testing to determine whether or not you are eligible for filing the Chapter 7.

It’s not very complicated, but it is an absolute requirement for the filing of Chapter 7. If you have any questions, you can always contact our office. Our office can provide that information to you.

What is chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Many people ask us what a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is in Georgia. It is a straight liquidation. That’s what it is termed in the bankruptcy code. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy allows you to discharge your debts. Mainly, it would be unsecured debts, medical bills, credit cards, personal loans, and things like that.

A Chapter 7 or even a Chapter 13 does not discharge student debts; it doesn’t discharge alimony, child support, or some tax debts, for instance, such as income taxes that were accrued within the last two to three years. It does allow you to discharge all other debts. If you have a car payment, of course, you have to keep making your car payment if you wanted to keep the car. You could surrender a car and you would not be required to make any payments, and the same thing with your mortgage, as well. If you have any questions concerning what is encompassed or was is included in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, just give our office a call. Thank you.

What happens after I file a chapter 7 bankruptcy?

One of the questions our clients typically ask us is what happens after you file a Chapter 7 in Georgia. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a fairly quick procedure. Once you file, you have a meeting of creditors within 30 days after the filing. Then assuming nothing goes wrong in your case, such as dischargeability issues, or unlisted assets or creditors, you should receive a discharge within three to four months after you file for bankruptcy. If you have any questions, please give our office a call.

What debts are not dischargeable under chapter 7 bankruptcy What debts are not dischargeable under chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Many times, people ask us what type of debts would not be dischargeable in Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia. Most debts are dischargeable. Debts that have liens against your car or your house, while perhaps dischargeable, continue to exist; in other words, if you don’t make the payments, they can reprocess your car or take your house.

Other debts, for the most part, are dischargeable; things like income taxes that are due within two to three years of the filing of the bankruptcy, of course, would not be dischargeable. Student loans are not dischargeable; alimony and child support are not dischargeable. A big one which we hardly ever see is if you were – you injured someone in drunk driving. Of course, that debt may not be dischargeable.

Or if you incur debts through fraud such as you mislead a creditor, you wrote down that you had a piece of collateral, but you did not have a piece of collateral when you borrowed the monies. Those kinds of things are not dischargeable. Fraud, drunk driving, child support, alimony, student loans, and any type of taxes that were incurred within two to three years of the filing of bankruptcy are typically not dischargeable. If you have any questions, please give us a call.

Call Our Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyers Today

Being in a lot of debt causes a lot of stress. Let us help you ease your worries. We know this is terribly difficult, and we want to be there for you every step of the way. Call us today to get started at getting your life back.