Have your monthly bills become too much? When your debt is more than you can handle, talk with a Sandusky bankruptcy lawyer with Kademenos, Wisehart, Hines, Dolyk & Wright Co. LPA about your options. Bankruptcy may offer some relief and hope for the future.
Do you have questions about bankruptcy? Watch the our video to hear from Ohio bankruptcy attorney, Adrienne M Hines:
Do You Need a Bankruptcy Lawyer?
There’s a stigma surrounding bankruptcy, and many people look at it as something to be avoided at all costs. But the federal bankruptcy system helps people and small businesses who’ve become overwhelmed by debt. Depending on the type of bankruptcy, you might eliminate or lower many of your debts. The process also protects you in various ways, like an automatic stay against creditors coming after you.
When you’re overwhelmed by your debt, don’t be afraid to ask for help. A Sandusky bankruptcy lawyer, like Adrienne Hines, will review your situation, explain your options, and guide you through the bankruptcy court process.
Consumers Have Two Options: Chapter 7 or Chapter 13
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Chapter 7 bankruptcy eliminates many of your debts. The legal term is “discharge.” Through this process, you can discharge many debts that aren’t secured by collateral. That includes credit card bills, medical bills, and some personal loans. Student loans are dischargeable, but only in rare cases.
If you’re willing to give up your vehicle or house, you can also discharge an unmanageable auto loan or mortgage. However, many people choose to keep their home or car and can do so. You don’t have to lose everything. We’ll explain how the bankruptcy court handles your home, car, and other essential belongings. The purpose is to give you a fresh start, not leave you destitute.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Chapter 13 focuses on giving you an achievable repayment plan instead of discharging most of your debts. Through this process, you and your creditors will develop a court-approved payment plan that lasts 3 to 5 years. The Chapter 13 trustee for the Sandusky region administers your plan. That’s who you send payments to for distribution to your creditors.
The benefit of this type of plan is that you may be allowed to pay pennies on the dollar of what you owe creditors. You can catch up where you’ve fallen behind. At the end of your payment plan, the court discharges the remaining debt.
Bankruptcy for Sandusky Small Businesses
Local small businesses are having a tough time lately. Our Sandusky bankruptcy lawyers want to see our local establishments thrive. But if you’re struggling to make ends meet, talk with us about filing for bankruptcy.
The options differ for consumers and businesses. Through Chapter 11, you may go through a repayment plan and keep operating. It can give you a chance to catch up on your debts, and in a few years, have your business in a better place.
Ready To Learn More?
If you think Chapter 7, 11, or 13 bankruptcy might be right for you, reach out to a bankruptcy lawyer in Sandusky, Ohio, at Kademenos, Wisehart, Hines, Dolyk & Wright Co. LPA. We offer free consultations.
How a Lawyer Helps You File for Bankruptcy in Sandusky, Ohio
By talking with an experienced Sandusky bankruptcy attorney, you learn whether Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 is an option for you.
We’ll guide you through gathering the documents you need. Those include, but aren’t limited to, all your bills, pay stubs, tax returns, your mortgage, and other loan documents. We’ll go over all of your debts and assets and the paperwork you’ll need to establish your situation.
The next step is a credit counseling session, which federal bankruptcy laws require for all consumers. You can go through the session in person or online. Once finished, you’ll receive documentation that you’ll provide to us.
Our firm will file your bankruptcy petition with the Northern District of Ohio, U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Five courthouses serve the Northern District, including in Toledo and Cleveland:
James M. Ashley and Thomas W. L. Ashley U.S. Courthouse
1716 Spielbusch Avenue
Toledo, Ohio 43604
Howard M. Metzenbaum U.S. Courthouse
201 Superior Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44114-1235
What Happens After You File
Once we file your Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition, your creditors will receive notice. That’s how and when the court places the automatic stay. An automatic stay protects you from a creditor suing for overdue bills after you’ve filed for bankruptcy. It also stops creditors from calling you, shutting off utilities, garnishing your wages, repossessing your car, or foreclosing your home.
Then you’ll have your meeting with the creditors – called a 341 hearing – 30 to 45 days after filing in court. You’ll go to the meeting with your lawyer, and during the meeting, the trustee will ask you questions under oath to make sure your paperwork is accurate. Creditors might also attend the meeting and ask questions.
The next steps depend on whether you filed for Chapter 7 or 13.
For a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, it takes a few months for the court to discharge your debts. During that time, you’ll go through more credit counseling.
If you filed for Chapter 13, the court would approve or deny your repayment plan during a confirmation hearing. The bankruptcy court will discharge the remaining debts 3 to 5 years later when you complete the payment plan.
Rebuilding Your Credit After Bankruptcy
Consumer bankruptcy has consequences. Chapter 13 stays on your credit history for seven years, while Chapter 7 remains on your history for 10 years. After this time, you may have to work with the credit bureaus for it to be removed.
We’ll help prepare you for life after bankruptcy. You can rebuild your credit score by paying everything on time and carrying only a modest amount of debt. You may be eligible for loans and credit cards, but creditors might offer you lower limits and higher interest rates.