No, you can own property and file for Chapter 7. Your real estate will not be sold if your real estate has little or no equity. There are exemption laws that serve to protect your assets from creditors. The Illinois homestead exemption shields $15,000 of equity. If both spouses are filing and both are on title, the exemption doubles.

As long as you are current with your note and the monthly payment poses no undue hardship, you can keep your vehicle and pay your car note as usual.

Those debts that are non-dischargeable are debts owed to the government, student loans, parking tickets, bad check charges, car accident claims resulting from drunk driving, debts incurred by fraud or deception, and domestic support obligations.

Some income taxes are dischargeable as long as the tax year is more than three years delinquent, a truthful return, filed on time or with approved extensions, and you received a liability notice more than 240 days prior to filing bankruptcy.

Chapter 7 is the type of bankruptcy that is most often filed. It allows individuals to discharge their qualifying debts completely in an abbreviated time frame. Some debts are not eligible for discharge under the new bankruptcy rules; such as child support, alimony and student loans. An attorney can explain which debts are and are not dischargeable.


Chapter 13 consolidates your outstanding debt into a payment plan that you can afford. It allows you to rearrange your finances and repay all or a portion of your debt in order for you to get back on firm financial footing.


Persons filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy must have sufficient disposable income to fund a repayment plan. The debt limits exist for secured and unsecured claims. Currently, you can’t have more than $1,010,650 in secured debt (e.g. mortgage, car loans or loans with some form of collateral) and not have more than $336,000 in unsecured debt (e.g. credit card debt, medical bills, utility bills and legal bills). Chapter 7 has no debt limits.

It stops collection activity and at the conclusion of the case a judge will issue a discharge order. The discharge order clears you off all dischargeable debts that existed before the case was filed. You become non-collectible and your credit history starts fresh.

When your case is filed, there is an automatic injunction order that goes into effect called an "automatic stay." The "automatic stay" stops creditors from trying to collect any debt from you. Informing your creditors of the existence of your bankruptcy and supplying them with the case number puts an immediate stop to creditor phone calls, collection letters, wage garnishments, lawsuits, bank levies and other forms of harassment, intimidation and scare tactics used by creditors.

You cannot file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy if you obtained a discharge of your debts in a Chapter 7 case within the previous eight years or a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy case within the previous six years. The date of filing, the circumstances surrounding the filing, and how it ended are relevant factors to discuss with Ms. Blanc.

It depends on the circumstances. Generally speaking , the law disfavors spouses filing separately, but the law doesn’t automatically preclude you from filing on your own. In fact, you may need to file in order to get an order discharging you of your jointly incurred debts.

Possibly, debts that you promise to pay or you promise to indemnify your spouse to pay in a marital settlement agreement or that a divorce judge orders you pay become non-dischargeable in your bankruptcy. Your spouse may challenge your bankruptcy filing for this reason. It’s worth asking Attorney Blanc how to deal with this situation.

If you are a disabled veteran and incurred your debt while on active military duty, or if your debts primarily come from the operation of a business, you will automatically qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If not, you will be subject to a “Means Test.”

In 2005, the bankruptcy laws changed to make it more difficult for people making more than the median income of their state for a household of a certain size to qualify for bankruptcy. The intent of the law is to avoid abuse of creditors. Bankruptcy is legal because it is fair. In keeping bankruptcy protection available to consumers, Congress decided to subject debtors to a “means test.” The test is used to determine if you have enough disposable income to pay some or all of your outstanding debt under a Chapter 13 repayment plan. The repayment plan lasts from three to five years. If your income is above the state’s median income, the law presumes you can afford to payback your creditors based on your financial situation. You will want Attorney Blanc on your side to help you get qualified for a Chapter 7 filing.


The first step in the means test is to determine the median income level for your area. If your average income over the past 6 months is less than the median income for your area, you are automatically eligible for Chapter 7.


If your income is more than the median income for your area, then you are subject to the means test.

A bankruptcy can remain on your credit report for ten years.

A “secured debt” is one that has an item of value listed as collateral to guarantee that you will pay the debt. Common secured debts include mortgages, car loans, motorcycle loans, etc. An “unsecured” debt is one that holds no claim to an asset. These debts include credit cards and signature loans. A home equity loan or home equity line of credit is a type of secured debt.

You will have to pay additional court costs and attorney fees to add creditors to your bankruptcy. In order to avoid additional costs, give Ms. Blanc all the information on your creditors ahead of filing.

No. Your Social Security payments will not be lost and Social Security is out of the reach of your creditors by law.

There are federal, state, and local exemptions that allow you to keep a certain amount of personal property when you file bankruptcy. Ms. Blanc will explain how these exemptions apply to people who file bankruptcy in your Illinois.

No. All prepetition debts are discharged unless they are excluded by statute or reaffirmed in bankruptcy. In general, once you file bankruptcy your creditors will discover it from the credit bureaus. If you are wondering what is a reaffirmation, look for the question what is a reaffirmation agreement.

If you choose to file a Chapter 7 case and want to keep a car or house that you still owe money on, you can choose to reaffirm the debt and continue to make payments. Reaffirming the debt will essentially take it out of the bankruptcy and the debt is not discharged. This means if you fall behind after the bankruptcy, your creditor can come after you since the debt remains collectible.

In most Chapter 7 filings, you should be in and out within 4–6 months.

Chapter 13 consolidates your outstanding debt into a payment plan that you can afford. It allows you to rearrange your finances and repay all or a portion of your debt in order for you to get back on firm financial footing. The greatest benefit is the ability to strip down a second mortgage or home equity loan. You can strip judgment creditors from your real estate in a Chapter 7, but you can’t strip a second mortgage. The case law is slowly progressing on this issue and one day it may be possible to strip a second lien in a Chapter 7. The problem with Chapter 13 is that the U.S. economy is unstable and Chapter 13 requires regular stable source of income to fund the plan. If you lose your job or your overtime is cut, or your business goes down, your case can get dismissed and you are back into square one. You might end up feeling like you lost your money and may not have any money especially if you were qualified to file a Chapter 7 and it made sense to do a Chapter 7 in the first place. Chapter 13 is a long-term case and a Chapter 7 can conclude within as little as 4–6 months. If you are behind in your mortgage or in foreclosure and want to keep your property, you have a bunch of non-bankruptcy solutions available, such as a short sale, loan modification, mediation, forbearance agreements, a deed-in-lieu transaction. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will not disqualify you from seeking any of the alternative remedies available for your mortgage crisis. Filing a Chapter 7 won’t preclude you from filing a Chapter 13 case at a later time. The only instances where you must resort to filing a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is where you risk forfeiting your property, such as to prevent a car repo, or an imminent mortgage foreclosure,to stop collections for debts that are non-dischargeable in Chapter 7, want to get back repossessed property, or don’t qualify for a Chapter 7.

Chapter 13 is a debt repayment plan for people who can afford to pay back their creditors in order to prevent foreclosures, prevent car repossessions, cram down a car note, strip a second mortgage from a property, restore driving privileges, repay non dischargeable debts such as debts owed to the government, consolidate bills.

Bankruptcy filing doesn’t wreck your credit. Consumers file bankruptcy because they have a poor credit history or good credit but are carrying too much of a debt load. A consumer who otherwise has good credit and is not overwhelmed by debt should avoid filing for bankruptcy, because if he does, and then later gets into financial trouble he may find that he is time barred from filing a Chapter 7.

This is not true. There are exemptions that protect assets in your bankruptcy and items are not sold if they don’t lead to a meaningful profit for all creditors.

The bankruptcy laws prohibit discrimination against debtors. In reality, a medical provider may be skeptical of your ability to pay for future services, especially in a small practice setting and you may in turn feel uncomfortable receiving treatment from the provider. If you have a medical provider that you want to continue your relationship with despite bankruptcy filing, talk to Attorney Blanc to discuss your options.

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Chicago Bankruptcy Attorney, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney, Uncontested Divorce Attorney Illinois, Property Tax Miami-Dade County/ Property Tax Broward County, Estate Attorney Chicago, Lawyer

Chicago Bankruptcy Attorney, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney, Uncontested Divorce Attorney Illinois, Property Tax Miami-Dade County/ Property Tax Broward County, Estate Attorney Chicago, Lawyer