If you are struggling financially with credit card debt, medical bills or your mortgage, you may be considering filing for bankruptcy. The Law Offices of John J. Thyne III will analyze your eligibility for the different forms of debt relief available under the Bankruptcy Code and together we will determine which form of relief is most likely to be beneficial for you.
Your Bankruptcy Options
If you are considering bankruptcy, the Law Offices of John J. Thyne III can answer your specific questions concerning the different types of bankruptcies available, costs, what happens to your property, how to stop the foreclosure of your house or repossession of your car, creditor phone calls and the how bankruptcy will affect your credit. We can tell you what bankruptcy can and cannot do for you. Contact our bankruptcy attorney Jason Toon to schedule an initial consultation to discuss your options.
Individuals who plan to file for Bankruptcy must complete a Pre-Bankruptcy Financial Counseling session before your case is filed. You will also need to complete a Pre-Discharge Education session before your bankruptcy case can be completed. The Law Offices of John J. Thyne III can assist you in obtaining these Debtor Education Courses now required under the Bankruptcy Code.
Once you have decided to file your bankruptcy, you will need to identify all of your creditors. If you need assistance identifying all of your creditors, you may wish to obtain copies of your credit report from one or all three of the nationwide credit bureaus. To obtain a copy of your credit report(s) now, contact:
- Experian: 888-397-3742
- Equifax: 800-683-1111
- Trans Union: 800-916-8800
Chapter 7 is the most common form of bankruptcy. It is a liquidation proceeding in which the debtor’s non-exempt property is sold by the Chapter 7 trustee and the proceeds are distributed to creditors.
As a general rule, certain property is exempt in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding filed in California, such as a certain amount of equity in a vehicle and a primary residence that is your homestead, your household goods, furnishings & personal items, your qualified retirement benefits including but not limited to your 401K, pension, and IRA accounts along with Social Security, Veterans & Disability Benefits are some examples of assets that you likely will be able to keep after filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
In a Chapter 7, usually the largest portion of debt is unsecured debt, such as medical debts, credit card debts, and loans that are not backed by any tangible assets or property. Secured debts (such as house and car loans) are debts backed by property. A creditor whose debt is secured has a legal right to take your property to satisfy the secured debt even though the underlying debt may be discharged in bankruptcy.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy, upon filing creditors must stop collection unless the creditor is allowed to proceed forward by the bankruptcy court, upon proper motion and a hearing. Certain debt obligations, eg. child support, are not affected by filing bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy gives you the critical time you need to eliminate or renegotiate your debts. It’s wise to keep current on your loan and get insured if you want to preserve your home or vehicle.
Any wages the debtor earns after the case is begun are the debtor’s and creditors have no claim on those earnings. By wiping out most debt, many debtors are able to get back on their feet. If debtors have significant assets they wish to protect such as houses, we often recommend Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
The current economic condition has made it more and more difficult for businesses to keep up with their overhead and debts. Unfortunately for some, the debt is simply too much and the business is no longer able to stay afloat.
How Business Liquidation Works
In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the bankruptcy court appoints a trustee to liquidate the business’s assets and distribute the proceeds to the business’s creditors. After the process is finished, the business ceases to exist and so do the debts.
Although Chapter 7 bankruptcy means the business has to close down, it does have certain advantages, it announces the end of operation of the business and the creditors will stopped from undertaking collection against the business.
California Bankruptcy Attorney Providing Creditor Representation
Bankruptcy provides particular rights for both debtors and creditors. Once a debtor files a bankruptcy petition, an automatic stay goes into effect and all collection efforts must stop. Creditors may not have direct contact with the debtor, but may communicate through the debtor’s attorney.
Creditor Representation in California
At the Law Offices of John J. Thyne III, we represent secured and unsecured creditors in consumer and business bankruptcy proceedings in California. We have extensive experience in local proceedings in bankruptcy courts, filing proofs of claim and negotiation of asset purchase agreements on behalf of potential buyers.
When you turn to our Santa Barbara law firm, our attorneys are prepared to assist you in reviewing schedules and information in a bankruptcy petition, exercising your legal rights as a creditor and helping you maximize your claim recovery.
Creditor Bankruptcy Litigation
With extensive experience in all legal proceedings in bankruptcy courts, examples of the creditor rights and litigation, the Law Offices of John J. Thyne III handles the following:
- Stay motions
- Plan objections
- Valuation disputes
- Dismissal motions
- Discharge contests
- Claim preparation and filing
- Attending creditor meetings and other related hearings