June 18, 2018

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

What is a Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Chapter 7 is known as “liquidation”. In a bankruptcy case under Chapter 7, you file a petition asking the court to discharge your debts. The basic idea in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is to wipe out (discharge) your unsecured debts in exchange for your giving up certain property which exceeds certain limits called “exemptions”. “Exempt” property is property which the law allows you to keep when you file bankruptcy. In most cases, all of your property will be exempt (see What Property Can I Keep). But property which is not exempt is sold, with the money distributed to creditors. If you want to keep property like a home or a car and are behind on the payments on a mortgage or car loan, a Chapter 7 case probably will not be the right choice for you. That is because Chapter 7 bankruptcy does not eliminate the right of mortgage holders or car loan creditors to take your property to cover your debt. A Chapter 7 may be filed individually or by a married couple filing jointly.

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