Schaumburg Bankruptcy Lawyer
In today's world, it's easy to get deep into debt. Once it begins, debt has the potential to grow quickly and aggressively, and you can find yourself in an unmanageable position in only a matter of months.
If you feel overwhelmed by your debt, you’re not alone. Having a massive amount of consumer, medical, and other debts can be traumatic and stressful. Owing money to creditors can make you lose sleep, feel physically sick, and even have conflicts within your own family.
When you have to choose between which bills get paid and which go unpaid, it's normal to feel like you are trapped and drowning in financial troubles. At the Law Offices of Robert M. Kaplan, PC, our goal as your bankruptcy attorney is to provide solutions and help you get back on your feet and out of financial debt.
- What is bankruptcy?
- What are the different types of bankruptcy?
- What are the limitations of bankruptcy?
- How long after filing for bankruptcy will the creditors stop calling?
- Will bankruptcy wipe out all of my debts?
- What if I have additional questions about bankruptcy in Illinois?
What is bankruptcy?
When an individual has a significant amount of debt and is unable to pay their bills, they’re able to get relief from many of their obligations through a legal process known as bankruptcy. Filing for bankruptcy is a serious decision and should not be taken lightly, as bankruptcy can stay on a person’s credit report for many years and affect their ability to get a loan in the future.
Bankruptcy cases exist under federal law, and judges preside over these cases in federal court. Citizens of every state can file for bankruptcy, and they usually do so with the help of an experienced bankruptcy lawyer.
If you file for bankruptcy, your creditors must immediately stop seeking to collect debt payments from you. This process is known as the “automatic stay,” as it pauses your debts until further down the line in your bankruptcy proceeding.
Although it is a last resort, bankruptcy gives you the chance to take back control over your financial situation. Depending on your circumstances, bankruptcy may eliminate 100% of your debt.
If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, we encourage you to speak with our knowledgeable Cook County bankruptcy attorney to learn about your options.
What are the different types of bankruptcy?
Once you’ve decided to file for bankruptcy, you’ll have the choice of filing for one of several different types. At the Law Offices of Robert M. Kaplan, we will always review your bankruptcy case along with your assets and financial obligations so that we can determine the type of bankruptcy that’s best suited for you.
While there are officially four types of bankruptcy, we typically work with the following three types:
Chapter 7: Chapter 7 bankruptcy is for individuals who are searching for a way to eliminate all or nearly all of their debt. Typically, Chapter 7 is the best choice if you have a limited income and know that you cannot realistically pay back most of your unsecured debts, such as credit card debt. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is known as “liquidation bankruptcy,” and you can expect the selling of many of your possessions to pay off creditors.
Chapter 11: Businesses that file for bankruptcy typically do so under Chapter 11. This type of bankruptcy allows corporations to restructure their debts and payment plans without having to sell their assets.
Chapter 13: Chapter 13 bankruptcy is referred to as a “wage earner’s bankruptcy” because it allows individuals with consistent incomes to restructure their existing debts and pay them off over time. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a good choice if you have enough income to make partial payments toward your debts every month and want to hold onto your assets, such as your car or your house.
Bankruptcy laws changed in 2005, but they still allow struggling families to find financial relief through bankruptcy filings. If your debts are putting a burden on your life, it may be time to consider getting professional help from a bankruptcy law firm.
What are the limitations of bankruptcy?
Before you begin any type of bankruptcy proceeding, it’s essential to understand the laws and limits surrounding the bankruptcy process.
Generally, bankruptcy can:
- Halt the home foreclosure process and give the filer time to catch up on outstanding payments
- Create a “discharge” from your legal obligation to pay the majority of your debts
- Stop harassment from creditors and wage garnishments
- Prevent or reverse repossession of physical assets
- Restore terminated home or business utility service
The bankruptcy process cannot:
- Discharge debts that have been given special protection under bankruptcy law. These debts include alimony, child support, some student loans, and criminal fines
- Eliminate new debts that come into play after a bankruptcy filing
- Relieve loan co-signers whose names are also attached to your debts
- Change the rights of secured creditors who have tangible collateral for their loans, such as homes and cars. You will typically be able to make restructured payments to these secured creditors over time if you wish to keep your property, but you will have to make agreed-upon payments, or the creditors can take the assets
How long after filing for bankruptcy will the creditors stop calling?
If they are following the law, your creditors must stop calling immediately after they become aware of your bankruptcy filing.
Creditors can learn about your bankruptcy case a few different ways: from the bankruptcy court, from your Schaumburg attorney, or you directly.
If you continue to receive harassing phone calls or contacts from your creditors even after filing your case, it’s a good idea to have your attorney speak with them directly. Most creditors will back down quickly, as they understand they can be held liable for attorney’s fees or even face court sanctions for continuing their collection efforts.
Will bankruptcy wipe out all of my debts?
Mostly, with some exceptions. Bankruptcy will not usually wipe out:
- Debts you didn’t list on your official bankruptcy petition
- Outstanding money you owe for alimony, child support, fines, and certain taxes
- Debts that are the result of “willful and malicious” harm
- Loans you obtained dishonestly or by giving false information to a creditor
- Most student loans
At the Law Offices of Robert M. Kaplan, our job is to help you understand your options for bankruptcy as well as how each option might hurt or help your situation. Bankruptcy is a serious business, and we want you to have all the facts before you make a decision.
If you’re concerned about particular debts or have questions about how bankruptcy will affect them, you can contact our law office to schedule a free bankruptcy consultation with Mr. Kaplan.
What if I have additional questions about bankruptcy in Illinois?
We understand that filing for bankruptcy can be a confusing and challenging time. If you have additional questions about your potential or a previous bankruptcy filing in the Chicago area, our law office is here to help. We always have free consultations available!
Our Schaumburg, IL bankruptcy lawyer can speak with you today about your debts. Please call us at (847) 845-9477 to get started.