BANKRUPTCY LAWYERS SERVING THE MIAMI VALLEY
Do you cringe when the phone rings? Get nervous sorting your mail? Worry that you might lose your home or vehicle due to unpaid debts? If so, you are not alone. In this economy, countless Americans are struggling to make ends meet. Depending on the severity of your situation, bankruptcy may provide an opportunity for you to make a fresh start.
The law firm of Miller, Luring, Venters & Wesner Co., L.P.A. provides legal services throughout the Miami Valley and is a debt relief agency. We help people and businesses file for bankruptcy relief under the United States Bankruptcy Code. A significant portion of our practice is devoted to helping individuals and small businesses find appropriate debt relief through Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
While bankruptcy may seem like an expensive option, that is simply not the case with our law firm. Instead of quoting unreasonable fees, we use our extensive experience to maximize the benefits of bankruptcy for you in a minimal amount of time — and at affordable rates. Contact us for bankruptcy help you can afford, you will be pleasantly surprised with the affordable services available to you.
Does Bankruptcy Provide the Best Solution – What Options Are Available to YOU?
Whether or not to file bankruptcy, or how and when to file bankruptcy are probably the most important decisions made in a bankruptcy case. Many factors come into play, most of which are unique to each individual client. Some turn upon state law custom and practice in the community, while other factors depend on specific provisions provided for in the bankruptcy code.
Your attorney should speak with you early on to explain the options that should be considered, as well as what these options will entail. If you are seriously considering bankruptcy, general procedures should be discussed with a knowledgeable attorney before making any final decisions. Often times our clients have preconceived ideas about bankruptcy that are inaccurate. One common misconception is that they will lose everything in a chapter 7 bankruptcy. However, this is not the case and the bankruptcy code provides protections for debtors that will enable them to have a fresh start once the bankruptcy plan has been completed.
Another concern faced by debtors considering bankruptcy is a feeling of a moral obligation to repay their debts. Creditors often prey upon these feelings and attempt to take advantage of these feelings when they make collection calls. While filing bankruptcy may be difficult for a client to accept at first, the fact of the matter is that most of our clients have exhausted all other remedies before using our services.
Bankruptcy is your right under the law. Bankruptcy was originally laid out in the United States Constitution and was intended to provide a fresh start for those precisely in your situation. No one looks down on corporations like General Motors, Chrysler, Kmart, Texaco, United Airlines, and Macy’s for their bankruptcy filings. Individuals including Donald Trump, Mike Tyson, Henry Ford, Lady Gaga, and scores of millionaire athletes have filed bankruptcy, and all of them were given a fresh start at the end of their bankruptcies. There should be no stigma associated with filing bankruptcy and if there is, it is generally a creation of the creditors as a way to induce payments by a debtor.
Although bankruptcy filings are a matter of public record they are generally not publicized in newspapers or elsewhere. Nonetheless, bankruptcy is not a step to be taken lightly and should only be considered after all other alternatives have been fully explored and explained by a competent attorney. The attorneys at our office are prepared to explain all options available under the bankruptcy code, as well as the alternatives to bankruptcy.
WHICH CHAPTER FITS YOUR NEEDS?
Each type of bankruptcy, or chapter, has different requirements and involves a different process. It is important to understand your options and determine which chapter best fits your needs. We help you choose the right debt relief plan for your circumstances and guide you through each step of the process.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is only available to debtors whose income is below the specified level. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy requires an individual to disclose all of their personal property.
If you have unsecured debt such as credit card debt, medical bills or deficiency balances due to auto repossession, Chapter 7 may be the right option for you. It is often referred to as straight bankruptcy and involves the elimination of eligible debts. Chapter 7 is especially effective for anyone who has minimal assets and a significant amount of debt.
How does it work?
Under chapter 7, all of your non-exempt property is converted into cash by a bankruptcy trustee who then distributes it to your creditors. Within approximately four months you should receive a discharge of all eligible debts. In some instances where a person has a large amount of assets, multiple homes or multiple cars for example, the court will require that individual to sell or turn over some of those items.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is available to debtors who have a steady and consistent income. Protection under the provisions of this chapter of the bankruptcy code generally allows an individual or corporate entity to retain all their possessions while paying back creditors a specified amount of what is owed.
This chapter is also known as reorganization bankruptcy. It may be right for you if you have non-exempt property that you would like to keep and a reliable income that will enable you to meet your daily expenses while paying off your debt. Filing under chapter 13 stops foreclosure actions and may enable you to refinance your vehicle. This makes it an excellent option for qualified individuals interested in saving their home or car.
How does it work?
Under chapter 13, the bankruptcy judge sets a court-approved three to five year debt repayment plan based on your income. The repayment plan is based on all money left over after your monthly living expenses are paid. Under the plan, your debts are consolidated into one payment that is made to the Chapter 13 trustee who then disburses individual payments to each of your creditors.
The debtor proposes a debt repayment plan that represents all the money left over after living expenses are taken out from monthly income. Living expenses include mortgage/rent, food, gasoline, and basic utilities (e.g., electricity, water). Creditors receive percentages of the debt repayment budget. While a debtor may choose to surrender some assets instead of continuing to make reduced payments on them, most people who enter Chapter 13 are able to keep their real and personal property.
Chapter 12 bankruptcy is only available for family farmers or family fishermen with regular annual income. This chapter allows financially distressed family farmers and fishermen to propose and carry out a plan to repay all or part of their debts.
How does it work?
Under chapter 12, debtors propose a repayment plan to make installment payments to creditors over three to five years. Typically, the plan must provide for payments over three years unless the court approves a longer period due to the demonstrated need of the debtor. In no case may a plan provide for payments over a period longer than five years.
Chapter 11 bankruptcy protections are available to businesses, individuals, or married couples. Under this plan debtors submit their own plan for repaying creditors while continuing to operate as close to normal as possible. There is no specific debt-level limit, nor is there a required income.
How does it work?
Chapter 11 bankruptcy is the most complex and therefore generally the most expensive. Consequently, it is most often used by companies to restructure their debts while continuing to conduct business. Whether property and other assets are retained is subject to the terms of the debt repayment plan created by the debtor, which must be approved by a judge and accepted by creditors named in the plan.
Click Here to View the Bankruptcy Code: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/11
Click Here to View Ohio’s Exemption Statute: http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/2329.66
Contact Us For a Free Initial Consultation
If you or a loved one is in need of legal representation, contact the Law Offices of Miller, Luring, Venters & Wesner Co., L.P.A. and schedule an appointment so that we can work together to find the best solution to your legal problems.