Deciding to file for personal bankruptcy is a very serious decision to make. It will have repercussions that will follow you for the rest of your life. Bankruptcy laws are not easy for non-lawyers to understand, but the information in this article will help explain what bankruptcy is, and how it can benefit you.
Keep your debts to a minimum prior to filing. If you are planning on filing for bankruptcy, don't run up your debts. Your recent history will be checked by judges and creditors, and if it is deemed that you are trying to cheat the system, you may not be able to wipe out those debts. You will be viewed most favorably, if you can demonstrate that you have changed your spending habits.
Decide whether you want to file for Chapter 7, or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. As an individual, you may do either one. Find out as much as you can about each type of bankruptcy, so you are able to make a choice that you can live with in the future.
Before you consider filing for bankruptcy, you should make a pre-determination if bankruptcy may be the right choice. First, make a list of all income, including, salary, child support, alimony, rent and any other sources you may have. Then, make a list of your bills. These would include mortgage, rent, car payments, monthly credit card payments, groceries and gas. If your monthly bill total is more than the income you bring in, it may be time to seek the advice of a bankruptcy attorney, who can help you make the final decision.
Make sure that you pay all of your bills on time, since this will contribute to 35 percent of what is on your credit report. This looks good if you are trying to rebuild your credit after you have had to file for bankruptcy. Making on-time payments will increase your credit score.
Don't put off bankruptcy forever. You might be better off filing early rather than juggling your debt for years. If you aren't sure what to do, search for a nonprofit agency that helps consumers navigate bankruptcy. These experts can advise you about the best time to file and can share information about what to expect. Many of these agencies provide classes or workshops about managing credit as well.
Knowing that you are required to disclose anything that you have sold, given away or transferred in the two years prior to filing can help you avoid a costly mistake. Full disclosure is required. Not disclosing everything can land you in jail or a discharge of your personal bankruptcy petition.
Find out as much as you can about the individual laws in your state. There is a lot of information about there, but every state has its particular laws that people are subject to. You may have a lawyer, but it is important that you know about this as well so you can make better decisions.
Be extra vigilant about your spending habits until your hearing. Judges take a look at your entire financial picture. They even look at the things you are doing right now, to see if you are trying to take advantage of the system. Show that you are now on the right track financially.
There are differences between Chapter 13 bankruptcy and Chapter 7; be sure to familiarize yourself with both. Read up on the topic and familiarize yourself with the benefits and drawbacks of both variations. Once you have done your own research, be sure to review your findings with your lawyer, who is the expert. This way, you can be sure of making a well informed choice.
Avoid running up your debt limit before you file for bankruptcy. Judges, and creditors look at recent history along with your current situation. A judge can deny some of your debts from being wiped out if, they think you're just taking advantage of the system. Try to show that that you're willing to change your fiscal habits.
Before filing for bankruptcy, keep in mind that child support will not be discharged in a bankruptcy case. The reason for this is that child support is a responsibility that a parent must pay. Bankruptcy does not remove that responsibility. Be sure to include any child support in your list of debts that will remain with you after the bankruptcy is discharged.
When you are about to file for bankruptcy, be sure you have all the financial information at hand. Even things that you do not use, should be listed in a bankruptcy filing. These could include, income from even small jobs, any vehicles listed in the filer's name whether or not they use them, and any pending lawsuits.
Make sure that filing for personal bankruptcy is the only option available to you. Some people are able to fix their debt with credit counseling. This is a decision that will make a large impact on your everyday life, so don't just hastily jump into filing for bankruptcy, know what you are doing!
Before filing for bankruptcy, talk with your creditors and see if there is anything that can be done to reduce the amount of your debt. Most creditors will work with you because they want you to pay them back their money. If you actually file for bankruptcy, they will lose their money.
As was stated before, the option of filing for personal bankruptcy should be kept open. It is not something that should be done lightly, however, due to the negative effects it can have on one's credit. As long as you're properly informed about which moves to take and when, you should have little trouble navigating the process and ultimately restructuring your credit.