Filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is only one method a debtor can use to resolve his or her financial difficulties. However, while some debtors may benefit from nonbankruptcy alternatives like consolidating loans, negotiating with creditors or credit counseling, many individuals find that filing bankruptcy is the only way to truly relieve themselves of the mountain of unpayable debt they have been struggling with for years. If you are considering filing bankruptcy in Oklahoma, your first course of action should be to consult an experienced bankruptcy attorney. Our lawyers at Oklahoma Legal Center have years of experience helping Oklahoma residents decide whether bankruptcy is the answer and determine what type of bankruptcy is right for them. Contact our bankruptcy attorneys at Oklahoma Legal Center today to discuss your Oklahoma bankruptcy options.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Described
Chapter 7 bankruptcy, also known as liquidation bankruptcy, allows a debtor to discharge all unsecured debt by turning over his or her non-exempt property to a bankruptcy trustee. The trustee assigned to the case converts the property into cash, which is then distributed to the owed creditors as payment. The 2005 amendments to the Bankruptcy Code made it more difficult for debtors to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy by imposing a “Means Test,” which determines who is eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy based on income. Since that time, the income increments have undergone minor changes, the most recent of which were put into effect on May 1, 2012. According to the most recent Means Test requirements, qualification for Chapter 7 bankruptcy is dependent on the following median income figures:
- $38,649 for a one-person household
- $49,838 for a two-person household
- $55,015 for a three-person household
- $62,301 for a four-person household (plus $7,500 for each individual over four)
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Described
Chapter 13 bankruptcy under the Bankruptcy Code is slightly different, as it essentially reorganizes a person’s debts so that they can be paid off over a period of three to five years. Chapter 13 bankruptcy then, is a type of repayment plan that gives debtors with regular income the opportunity to organize past-due balances and repay all or part of their debts. However, in order to qualify for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you must have predictable income that is enough to pay your reasonable expenses while leaving some left over to pay your debts. Once you have filed Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will make a monthly payment to your bankruptcy trustee, who will then divide the payment among your owed creditors based on a court-approved repayment plan. Chapter 13 may be a good fit for debtors who are struggling with back taxes, home foreclosure, past-due student loans, vehicle repossession, or alimony and child support.
Contact Our Oklahoma Bankruptcy Attorneys Today
Making the decision to file for bankruptcy in Oklahoma can be a difficult one, and our skilled bankruptcy attorneys can help you make the right choice based on your financial situation. If you are considering filing for bankruptcy in Oklahoma, contact our lawyers at Oklahoma Legal Center to learn everything you need to know about the Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy options available to you. Our law firm is located in Oklahoma City, and our attorneys have years of experience helping clients resolve their debt and get their lives back on track.