Houston Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyer
Each year, thousands of Texans clear their debt through Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 helps eliminate most unsecured debts (such as credit cards, payday loans, and medical bills).
If you are struggling with unsecured debt and cannot catch up, Chapter 7 provides a great solution and the opportunity for a fresh financial start – usually within 4 to 6 months after filing.
Factors to Consider
- Chapter 7 only helps with unsecured debts, such as credit cards, payday loans, and medical bills. It does not assist with secured debts, such as your mortgage or car note, or priority debts, such as past due taxes and child support.
- If your disposable income is over a certain limit, you may not qualify for Chapter 7 relief.
- At the time of filing, you must be current on all secured debts, including your home, vehicle, and furniture, unless you intend to surrender the property to the lender.
- Your attorney fees must be paid in full prior to filing, as your attorney cannot be a creditor in your case.
- You must pay a filing fee ($335) and credit report fee ($75) prior to filing.
- You must complete an approved, pre-filing credit counseling course and post-filing financial management course, both of which can be done online.
- After filing, you must attend a meeting with your Trustee and any creditors that choose to participate (called the “341 Meeting). The meeting examines you and the documents you filed with the Court.
- If your creditors don’t file any objections in the case, and there are no assets to liquidate, your case will conclude 60 days after the 341 Meeting.
Protecting Your Personal Property
Most debtors worry they will lose their property if they file for Chapter 7. Although a Chapter 7 Trustee will be assigned to your case and has the right to sell your non-exempt property, he or she cannot liquidate your exempt property. Most of your cases are “no asset cases” where our clients have enough exemptions to protect all property from liquidation.
There are numerous property exemptions under state and federal law. You and your attorney must determine which exemptions provide the best protection for your specific situation.
After determining the appropriate exemptions, you may still have remaining property that is not exempt. In these cases, the property must be turned over to Chapter 7 Trustee. Even if this occurs, you may have the option to purchase the property back through a settlement agreement with the Trustee.
Call Today for Your Consultation With a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney
If you’re struggling with debt, Chapter 7 can help. We represent diverse clients, including students, parents, single individuals, young and elderly couples, and small business owners. Chances are we’ve helped someone just like you.