Many people dread the thought of filing for personal bankruptcy and put it off for as long as possible. However, this procrastination often makes a bad situation even worse. If you're considering bankruptcy as an option for getting out from under an avalanche of debt, it's best to start learning about the process sooner rather than later. It's not a quick and easy process. However, with good professional legal help, you can make the best choices for your situation.
First, it's essential to determine which type of bankruptcy -- Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 -- to use. Often, people prefer Chapter 7 because it allows them to discharge a good deal of their debt.
However, your income may be too high to qualify for Chapter 7. You may need to choose Chapter 13. If the court determines that you have enough income to pay your debts with a repayment plan, you can choose to file Chapter 13.
If creditors have already begun garnishing your wages or have filed lawsuits against you, a bankruptcy filing can end that garnishment and possibly discharge some legal claims. It's essential to learn what types of debts can and can't be discharged in bankruptcy. For example, if you have spousal and/or child support obligations, bankruptcy won't end those. If you owe back taxes, bankruptcy won't relieve you of that obligation. If you're facing legal action resulting from any wrongdoing on your part, those won't be discharged in bankruptcy either.
The best first step if you're thinking about filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is to contact an experienced New York bankruptcy attorney. They can review your financial situation with you and discuss your options. If you choose bankruptcy, they can help you through the process so that you can complete it successfully and move forward.