Practice Area: Bankruptcy / chapter 7

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyers
in Jacksonville, FL

What Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

The most common bankruptcy filed in the United States is Chapter 7. Those who are allowed to file a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Florida and around the country include companies, married couples, and individuals. A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is designed to wipe out all of a person’s unsecured debt, such as credit cards and medical bills.

How Do I Qualify For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

To qualify for this, a person must have a low disposable income over the last 6 months. Those who earn too much money, or have excess disposable income, may be required to file a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy or find a way to lower their income, instead. In Florida, a debtor must pass a Bankruptcy MEANS test, which means the debtor’s family income cannot exceed the average family median income in your geographic area.

What Happens After I File For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Once a bankruptcy is filed in Jacksonville or the Middle District, a trustee is appointed to administer your Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. This bankruptcy trustee is responsible for selling a debtor’s nonexempt property. If the debtor does not own any nonexempt property, his or her creditors will receive nothing. This type of bankruptcy is designed to help low-income debtors climb out of debt. The type of property generally targeted includes luxury items such as new TVs, appliances, electronic equipment, and expensive cars.

In a Florida bankruptcy, residents are not allowed to use the Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions. Some argue that Florida has some of the best bankruptcy exemptions in the country for homeowners. Florida residents must instead use Florida’s specific bankruptcy exemptions.

Florida's Specific Bankruptcy Exemptions Include The Following:

  • Florida’s homestead exemption: Allows debtors to exempt an unlimited value in that person’s homestead property. In order to qualify for this exemption, a debtor must have owned the property for at least 1,215 days prior to filing their Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. The homestead exemption is limited to $146,450 for those who cannot meet this requirement.
  • Personal property, bankruptcy exemption of $1,000: Includes such items as jewelry, furniture, art, and electronics up to a total of $1,000.
  • If a debtor does not use Florida homestead exemption, they can take personal property, bankruptcy exemption of up to $4,000.
  • Other bankruptcy exemptions include prepaid medical savings accounts, prescribed health aids, and educational savings.

The Automatic Stay Rule For Chapter 7

Upon filing either a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, an automatic stay is put in place for 120 days. This means that creditors cannot try and collect from you. The automatic stay will remain in effect until one of the following things occur:

A creditor petitions the court for relief from the Bankruptcy’s automatic stay and the court enters an order granting it;

You receive a discharge in your bankruptcy case; or

Your case is dismissed.

However, certain debts are not affected by the automatic stay. These debts include child support, alimony, and other similar debts. If there is a breach of the automatic-stay, we aggressively pursue any violation to help you recover damages.

Contact us today to schedule a free, confidential consultation with a Jacksonville bankruptcy lawyer to see what options may be available to you. During the consultation, an experienced Jacksonville bankruptcy chapter 7 lawyer will carefully review the facts of your case and help you choose a course of action that is best for your individual needs.

We'll get through this together.

Our clients say it all.

Due to medical reasons I was really struggling financially. As much as nobody ever wants to file for bankruptcy, I had no choice. But I'm thankful I gave Tom a call. He walked me through exactly what I needed to do and was a reassuring voice all along the way. I'm now getting my life back on track and I couldn't be happier. Thank you Liberty Law for all of your help

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