Who Should File For Chapter 13?

Chapter 13 is often a good personal bankruptcy option for people earning a steady income who have a home and a car. This type of bankruptcy, sometimes referred to as repayment or reorganization, allows the person to pay off his or her debts but over a longer time, at a lower rate, and sometimes for pennies on the dollar.

Chapter 13 And Foreclosure

If you have a steady income and valuable assets, Chapter 13 is often the better route. This is because Chapter 13 most often allows you to keep your home. This filing stops foreclosure and allows you to repay your mortgage. Chapter 13 is a viable option for taking a large amount of separate debts and "rolling them into one debt." If you earn above a certain level (as indicated by the means test) you may not qualify for Chapter 7. In that case Chapter 13 is often a better choice.

Why Use An Attorney?

Every situation is different. People have various priorities and goals that must be considered before any bankruptcy filing. There are also certain conditions and debts that will not be affected by bankruptcy, such as student loans, spousal support and child support payments. Criminal fines will not be discharged either. Some property you may be able to keep, such as that which is necessary for your livelihood or is personal, and some property, such as property that is given to you in a will, you may not be able to keep. Each case is unique and should be evaluated by a qualified bankruptcy attorney.

Does Bankruptcy Affect My Options?

Yes. But not the way you might think. One thing is true: more options for repayment and interest rates are available when you file for bankruptcy than when you don't. Bankruptcy actually offers you more options for repayment than not filing does. You may also be able to refinance your purchases after bankruptcy. This does not count as a purchase.

Chapter 13 Pros And Cons

In a Chapter 13 filing you do not pay back 100 percent of what you owe, but only a fraction of this debt, depending on your resources and income.

One of the drawbacks of Chapter 13 is judicial oversight: You will have a court overseeing your finances and spending for the next three to five years.

You will also:

  • Not be able to borrow money without the court's approval
  • Be required to turn in your tax returns

Will I Lose Everything?

The short answer is no.

What Can I Keep?

Your home, unless you have equity of $75,000 per person in Wisconsin. That's $150,000 a couple. Your vehicle and personal property (such as your jewelry or art, for example).

What Can I Lose?

While Chapter 13 is a viable and agreeable option for most people, here are elements of your property that may be at risk. These include:

  • Your hunting land
  • Vacation property
  • Home or property that has been transferred to you in a TOD

Find out if your parents transferred property to you. Check with your relatives before you file because any property that becomes your property for bankruptcy purposes is available for creditors.

Call Wolk Law Office in Oshkosh today and speak to a lawyer about whether you qualify to file for personal bankruptcy. Call 920-385-5621. After hours you can email us and we will get in touch with you. We serve people in Wisconsin and throughout Winnebago County.

We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy protection under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.