A sad realty for many Americans in general, and Ohioans in particular is the fact that many sits perched on the edge of financial disaster owing to the next unexpected bill. It is a well-known fact that most Americans would have difficulty dealing with an unexpected $400 bill, and such an event would leave them scrambling to meet the obligation.
Considering what the cost of a catastrophic injury, accident, or recurring cost can do to a family’s finances, it is easy to understand why somewhat might look to see what protections are available in the Buckeye State when it comes to seeking bankruptcy options.
Debts are not the end of the world even though it may feel that way when being crushed by payment demands and collection efforts. As any Dayton bankruptcy attorney will tell you, you are not alone in these feelings and bankruptcy protection is a feasible option to get started with a clean slate financially.
Federal Bankruptcy Protection and Effects on Credit Ratings
To begin with, Ohioans looking for relief from ongoing debt collection efforts and untenable bills will be seeking protection under federal statutes governing claims for bankruptcy. Under these guidelines there are generally two paths to discharging your personal debts under bankruptcy court: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.
To understand the value, and continued obligations, of each of these choices let us first look at these two debt relief options before discussing why you might prefer to choose one option over another.
As a caveat, regardless of the path you choose, each direction requires a prodigious effort to collect records and information, so begin early by gathering all your overdue bills and financial responsibilities. When the judge looks at your situation, they will be doing so with balance sheet in mind, so gather information regarding your available assets as well since the court will demand accurate records.
A successful bankruptcy will affect your credit in several keyways that can have both short term and long-term implications for your credit.
- Bankruptcy stays on your credit for 10 years.
- Credit scores drop of 160 to 220 points.
- Difficulty reestablishing credit
- Negatively impact ability to rent.
A bankruptcy is not the end of the world, although at times it may seem the case as you work through the process, and the main antidote to that is time.
The Difference Between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcies
Chapter 13 protection is an excellent way to reorganize your debt. Needless to say, gaining protection under the bankruptcy codes is a process rather than an event, so be prepared to furnish a great deal of information to satisfy the bankruptcy trustee. Just some of the important information you will need includes:
- List of all creditors and the amount of money you owe.
- Detailed accounting of your income including amount and frequency.
- A list of all your property and assets
- Detailed list of monthly living expenses
If you have the wherewithal to repay your debts, but just need some extra breathing room to reorganize what you owe your creditors.
Unlike Chapter 13 protection, Chapter 7 bankruptcy help does not require that you file a repayment plan. Chapter 7 bankruptcy might be the right solution when:
- Your total debts equal more than half your annual income
- You do not have many assets.
- The bulk of your debts are dischargeable.
- Repaying your debt will take longer than five or six years.
Not all debts are dischargeable under Chapter 7 bankruptcy including child support obligations, student loans, and recent taxes.
Call the Experts at Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer
As this quick survey points out, there is a great deal of thinking that goes into filing for bankruptcy protection. From the form of protection to the effects that protection might have on your credit rating, having the information you need to make an informed decision is the first step in making the correct choice.
Here at Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer, we specialize in providing you with the answers that you need to make that choice. We will stand by you throughout the bankruptcy proceedings, so you and your family’s interest will always be represented.
We understand that entering bankruptcy is never to be taken lightly, so we know that the financial circumstances that brought you to this decision are dire. As a Dayton bankruptcy attorney firm that specializes in these types of cases, we are standing by to help you through these stressful times with answers to your questions.
If you are being deluged by demands for payments that you simply can’t meet, the bankruptcy laws of the United States are there to protect you and your family from financial ruin and provide peace of mind. Stress doesn’t need to last forever and calling a Dayton bankruptcy attorney is your first step to achieving that peace of mind.