Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
What's a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
A Chapter 7 is what people people commonly recognize as a "bankruptcy". It eliminates your debts and gives you a "fresh-start".
Other debts you may choose to keep. As an example, if you wish to keep you automobile and it still has a loan, you can normally continue paying on the car loan and keep your car. Or, if you decide that keeping the car and paying the note isn't right for your after bankruptcy budget, you can surrender the car back to the creditor and owe nothing.
There are several categories of debts that are not "wiped-out" or discharged. For example, taxes are typically not discharged, but this isn't always the case. This is also the same for debts such as student loans which have a very high bar to qualify for a discharge. Other debts that are commonly not dischargeable include child-support or attorney fees arising from child-support litigation.
Keep in mind, that a Chapter 7 bankruptcy also considers your assets available to pay your debts. Exemptions are available to protect some of these assets, but you have to ensure you properly claim or handle the asset. For example, child-support received is a protected asset, but if you received a large child support payment and mixed it with 1 penny of your unexempted money, now that child-support can be lost. Exemptions can be complicated and often not what you would expect. For example, are expensive wedding bands "jewelry" entitled to a $1500 exemption? Or are they considered "necessary wearing apparel" entitled to a more generous exemptions. Read here to find out how Donald Trump's behavior, a proclamation from the Queen's Palace and not wearing a wedding ring to a bankruptcy 341 all developed into wedding bands being considered necessary wedding apparel under Illinois Bankruptcy Law. The Bankruptcy code and law is full of such fun facts and traps.
Make sure you have the right Chicago bankruptcy attorney. We are not a bankruptcy "factory" or a national bankruptcy law firm franchise. We are not a law firm that practices in tens of arenas of the law and masters none. We focus on bankruptcy and as a result, our experience provides solid attorney representation for you throughout Illinois.
It's important that you have an experienced bankruptcy attorney review your specific situation. Every situation is different and your is specific to you. Review the Illinois Chapter 7 FAQ's which will answer many questions you may have or may get you thinking about questions your should ask.