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What property can I keep in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Unbearable debt is becoming a more and more common problem throughout the country, for people in every walk of life. The good news for those drowning in debt is that the law offers legal ways to discharge debt through bankruptcy, but the process is still unclear to many people.

A poor public opinion has hung around bankruptcy for many years, despite the fact that it is a perfectly legitimate procedure protected by the law. This bad reputation contributes to the many misconceptions that the public has about bankruptcy. Among other things, many people believe that bankruptcy means losing all of your property, but this is usually not how a bankruptcy actually plays out.

Are you being harassed by creditors? Bankruptcy can help.

It probably started small, with student loans and a low balance credit card. You finished school with substantial student loan debt and found yourself needing credit cards to pay your monthly expenses while looking for a job. Now, although you have a job, you are only making your minimum monthly payments and the balance keeps climbing. A large amount of your income is going straight to your debt, and you can't keep up with it. In this kind of situation, one accident or sudden illness could be enough to completely destroy your financial security and independence.

Medical debt can often become a major burden for uninsured or underinsured people in Tennessee. You may try to do the right thing by prioritizing certain debts, but now your creditors are calling you. In addition to emails and nasty letters sent warning you of potential lawsuits if you don't pay more, your family could be getting calls as well. Creditors may even try to contact you at work, which could cause issues with your employer (and your ability to pay for your debts). If you can't pay off your debt and are facing creditor harassment, bankruptcy may help.

5 things to consider if you are thinking of filing bankruptcy

When you are drowning in debt, there are a lot of issues that can plague your mind. You might wonder how you are going to make ends meet. You might be tired because creditors keep calling you or sending you collection notices in the mail. One option that you have to regain your peace of mind is to file for bankruptcy. There are multiple options that you can consider. Before you come to the point of thinking about the type of bankruptcy you want to file, you should think about how these five points will impact your life.

#1: Automatic stay

You can fight wage garnishment

After graduation, you were able to make regular payments on your student loans. Unfortunately, things took a turn and you had to change jobs. The 30 percent pay cut you took has made it difficult to keep up with your living expenses and your loan payments. You had to make a choice a between paying rent and paying on your student loans. Rent won out. Now, you are more than six months behind on your payments and the lender has started garnishing your wages.

Your circumstance is not uncommon. There are several situations that can result in wage garnishment. In addition to student loans, people that get behind on back tax payments, child support and personal loans are at risk of wage garnishment. Wage garnishment is a legal procedure that creditors can use to recoup outstanding loan payments. It is usually considered a fairly severe consequence, but it is possible to fight wage garnishment. An experienced attorney in the Memphis area can help you choose the best debt relief option for you.

Young professionals are often confused by bankruptcy myths

As a young professional, you may find yourself facing a variety of financial challenges. While you can dig yourself out of some problems, there may come a point when you have no option but to consider bankruptcy.

There are many challenges associated with bankruptcy, including the fact that you may not know exactly what this process entails. This is particularly true if you are a young professional who doesn't have much experience in the real world.

What is a manageable debt-to-income ratio?

Many people who file for bankruptcy do so because they can no longer manage their debt. With 80 percent of American households holding some form of debt, many people are "comfortable" with the concept of living in the red.

However, with the price of household goods inflating, you may feel like you are working harder than ever to pay your bills. Therefore, it is important to understand how debt payments fit into your monthly budget of income and expenses.

Modern Americans are more comfortable with personal debt

Americans have grown increasingly comfortable carrying personal debt. From high mortgages, car loans and credit card balances, many are walking a fine line between living a comfortable life and taking a financial tumble. One misstep, one serious illness, lost job or economic downturn and the debt-to-income ratio could fall, tragically, into the red.

Although good, hard working people do what they can to cushion themselves for a financial shortfall, that backup fund may not cover the rising cost of living expenses and accumulated debts.

Do you need to 'qualify' for bankruptcy?

For many, the subject of bankruptcy is shrouded in mystery, myth and misinformation. Examples include: People who file for bankruptcy are irresponsible. Bankruptcy forever ruins your credit. Bankruptcy absolves the debtor of all debt. None of those assertions are categorically true. And here is one more: You have to qualify for bankruptcy in order to file.

That statement is far too black and white. Qualification has more to do with the type of bankruptcy that is filed than it does your individual eligibility. The bankruptcy means test helps to determine which type of bankruptcy you qualify for.

4 Ways to repair your credit after bankruptcy

Filing for bankruptcy can be scary. However, it can actually be a good way to get back on your feet and start moving in the right direction. Although filing for bankruptcy will negatively affect your credit score temporarily, that doesn't mean there isn't anything you can do about it.

Contrary to popular belief, filing for bankruptcy doesn't mean you can never get credit again. Follow these four steps to repair your credit after you file for bankruptcy.

Protecting a loved one's inheritance in bankruptcy

Most people, by the time they become seniors or reach retirement age, have an estate plan in place that dictates where they would like their property and assets to go when they die. Considered to be one of the most important legal documents a person can establish, estate plans also require extensive consideration to ensure the right distribution of inheritance to the right beneficiaries.

But as you can imagine, having a fixed income and mounting healthcare costs can easily threaten these carefully laid plans. In some cases, seniors may even be forced to consider filing bankruptcy to avoid leaving their loved ones with an extensive debt burden when they die. This decision does raise an important question, however: 

Start By Getting Your Questions Answered

Contact us now to learn about what options are available to you in your particular financial situation. Call our law firm today at (901) 201-6012 or fill out the form to schedule a FREE CONFIDENTIAL CONSULTATION.

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