Information on this page should not
be construed as legal advice and does not constitute an engagement of
Roberts & Roberts. The information contained below is of a
general nature and may not apply to any particular set of facts or
do collector calls stop?
I lose any assets or property?
often can I file Chapter 7 or 13?
my spouse file with me?
happens to my credit?
I refinance or sell my home? When can I purchase a new home?
you stop my home foreclosure?
Bankruptcy eliminate all debts?
I have to list all my creditors?
you remove a lien?
try to payback creditors in Chapter 13, why not just file Chapter
my co-signor be protected?
my employer be notified?
my bank account be affected?
Chapter 7 or 13 stop lawsuits and judgments?
I get out of a contract?
you stop wage garnishment?
you stop auto repossession?
about back child or spousal support?
about back taxes?
you help with delinquent student loans?
I use credit while in Chapter 7 or 13?
I have to go to court?
long will I be in Chapter 7 or 13?
Once you retain Roberts & Roberts, the law requires creditors deal with us and leave you alone. Note
that the creditors can still take legal action against you until we
file your bankruptcy petition.
Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy exempts most
assets allowing over 90% of our clients to keep everything and lose
Chapter 13 - Debt Consolidation you
keep all assets you choose as debts are paid "as if in
Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy allows 1
discharge every 6 years.
Chapter 13 - Debt Consolidation lets
you file as often as needed, if filed in good faith and 70% of
unsecured debts were paid in a previously discharged Chapter 13.
No, in fact we generally prefer to file
for only one spouse if possible because of certain exemptions
available only to married couples.
Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 both
remain on your credit report for 10 years. But, by not filing, credit
bureaus report negative information from the date you become current.
By filing, negative reporting stops immediately. This allows you to
begin re-establishing credit faster by keeping house, auto or other
payments current. Note that after bankruptcy many creditors will
extend credit to you because you are now out of debt and have more
disposable income each month.
Chapter 7 - Thirty days after the
meeting of creditors you can generally sell your homestead if the
trustee or creditors have not filed any objections to your claim
Chapter 13 - If your Chapter 13 Plan
has been confirmed by the court and the Plan does not deal with the
mortgage on your homestead or other property you seek to sell, you may
sell it without court authority. In all other circumstances, we must
seek court authority for you to sell your property.
Under either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13,
you may purchase a new home after discharge without any court
Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy can only
temporarily stop foreclosure until your case is dismissed or your
creditor receives relief from the automatic stay.
Chapter 13 - Bankruptcy permanently
stops foreclosure if back payments and normal payments are kept
current via the confirmed Chapter 13 Plan.
Chapter 7 - A Chapter 7 discharge
eliminates almost all secured debts with certain exceptions. Some
notable exceptions include your most recent 3-years of income tax
liabilities, student loans, alimony and child support obligations.
Chapter 7 also does not affect secured debts, except for liens on
personal property that are redeemed for the fair market value of the
collateral in the bankruptcy.
Chapter 13 - A Chapter 13 discharge
eliminates all debts that Chapter 7 does, plus you get a
superdischarge. This means that certain debts that are
nondischargeable in Chapter 7 are discharged in Chapter 13. You can
also modify the rights of secured creditors in Chapter 13, which means
that you can strip down a lien to the value of the collateral in your
Chapter 13 payment plan.
You must list all creditors at filing
except creditors with zero balance.
Chapter 7 - If the lien was not
incurred to purchase the asset, was not consensual, and impairs an
exemption, it may be removed by lien avoidance techniques.
Chapter 13 - Nonconsensual liens are
removed the same as in Chapter 7, but you can also modify consensual
liens. You can even "strip off" a second mortgage on your
homestead if it is completely unsecured.
There are specific reasons that some
people cannot file a Chapter 7 and need to file Chapter 13. For
instance, if you have disposable income after payment of your living
expenses each month, you may not qualify for Chapter 7. Another reason
is to protect non-exempt property. An example of this is where you
have a car with more than $1,000 in equity.
All consumer co-signors are protected
under Chapter 13 - Debt Consolidation but not under Chapter 7 -
Chapter 7 - No, unless you owe your
Chapter 13 - Local Rules of our
bankruptcy court here in the Southern District of Florida require a
Wage Deduction Order for the Chapter 13 payments. This rule does not
apply to self-employed persons or if the court permits payments
without a Wage Deduction Order.
If your bank or credit union is an
unsecured creditor, close your account and move to a bank where you
owe nothing. Otherwise, at time of filing, your bank could offset or
freeze your account.
Yes, immediately when we file your
case. There are certain exceptions to this rule. One major exception
is for child support enforcement suits.
Bankruptcy generally cancels unwanted
contracts if you discontinue the service and/or return the
Yes. We make creditors stop garnishing
wages when your case is filed. Note that there is an exception is for
child support enforcement suits.
Chapter 7 - The bank cannot repossess
your car once you file bankruptcy. You must, however, get the payments
current before the case is finished or before the bank receives
permission from the bankruptcy judge to repossess.
Chapter 13 - You can cure defaults on
your car loan or even lower the payments on your car loan in Chapter
13. We also make the bank return the car if it was repossessed within
10 days before you filed your bankruptcy.
Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy cannot protect
you after discharge. Child and spousal support and alimony are
Chapter 13 - You pay back child and
spousal support in full, without further interest, in your payment
In Chapter 13 - Debt Consolidation you
pay back taxes without interest, in your payment plan. In Chapter 7 -
Bankruptcy, secured taxes, such as property taxes, cannot be
discharged. Unsecured taxes, such as income taxes, may be discharged
if the taxes are 3 years old, you filed timely, and you have not been
assessed in the prior 240 days.
In Chapter 13 - Debt Consolidation you
can pay student loans, without interest, in your payment plan. In
Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy, student loans may be discharged if the loans
were from a non-government profit institution or they are over 7 years
old from final due date.
No, not until you receive a discharge.
In Chapter 13 - Debt Consolidation you must get court permission to
incur debt over $250, except in emergencies.
Generally only one trustee meeting
appearance is required 30 to 45 days after filing. This is normally a
short meeting and you do not see the judge. Your creditors may be
present to ask questions. Our attorney will be present to represent
Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy takes about 5
months, although your dischargeable debts are gone the day we file
Chapter 13 - Debt Consolidation takes 3
to 5 years to repay debts unless you decide to pay faster.