Bankruptcy and foreclosure can be difficult things to deal with on your own, and many individuals in these situations are unsure about their legal rights and options for resolving their problems. At The Coyle Law Group, we understand the confusion these issues can cause and how difficult addressing debt can be. As such, we have put together this collection of frequently asked questions and answers to help individuals better understand what they may be able to do to get out of debt and how these processes work.

If your question is not currently here or if you would rather speak to a trained legal professional about your situation, please contact us today by calling 410-884-3180.

Will bankruptcy affect my future job prospects?

It is possible, but unlikely. Though some employers may ask you to show financial records or if you have gone through a process like bankruptcy, revealing that you did file for bankruptcy will likely not reflect negatively against you. In fact, many employers may take it as a sign that you were trying to responsibly get control of your finances. And, should you wish, you do not have to reveal this aspect of your financial history.

When will my credit be repaired?

This depends on what type of bankruptcy you file for. If you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, it will show on your credit report for 7 years, whereas Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for 10 years. The decreased amount of time for Chapter 13 is due to the fact that you pay off more of your debt through Chapter 13 bankruptcy. You can learn more about how bankruptcy will affect you by speaking with the legal team at The Coyle Law Group.

If my lender was unfair, can I keep my home?

Unfair lending practices are a problem that has affected many debtors across the United States; lenders really took advantage of the economy before it spiraled downward, causing millions to see financial difficulties. However, these unfair lending practices (like misrepresenting information, lying, and/or deception of any kind) might also help you to prevent the foreclosure of your home. To learn more about unfair lending practices and how you may be able to avoid foreclosure, contact us today at 410-884-3180.

What are non-dischargeable debts?

Debt is essentially divided into two forms: dischargeable and non-dischargeable. Dischargeable debts are those that might be eliminated through bankruptcy or debt negotiation proceedings, and might be forgiven by creditors. Non-dischargeable debts, such as those owed through taxes, child support debts, alimony debts, student loans, and more, are not eliminated through bankruptcy, meaning they are ones that a debtor will have to pay back in full usually. However, bankruptcy or negotiation proceedings may be able to extend your repayment plan, giving you more time to pay these debts back, often at reduced interest rates.

Do I have to liquidate all my assets to pay off debt?

You do not always have to liquidate your property and assets in order to pay back outstanding debts. Liquidation, which involves selling property in order to get its monetary value, only is done in Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Additionally, in many cases, even those people who file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy do not have to liquidate much, if any, of their property, as many exemptions are available that allow people to keep their assets. The best way to understand what assets you may have to liquidate is to speak with a lawyer from The Coyle Law Group.

I can’t pay off my credit cards, can you help?

Hundreds of thousands of people have extremely high credit card bills, and many are unable to pay their bills off due to high interest rates and daily expenses. However, bankruptcy proceedings or debt negotiation may be some options people in this situation can pursue in order to deal with outstanding credit card debt. Though Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy, or debt negotiation, many individuals have been able to get rid of their high credit card bills, and regain financial independence that brings comfort and security.

Are there any other options for debt repayment?

There are other options for repaying debt besides bankruptcy. For instance, one of the most popular alternatives to bankruptcy is debt negotiation. This involves negotiating with creditors to remove or reduce existing debt to levels and interest rates that better suit your current and projected financial situation. Debt negotiation is a popular option because it keeps bankruptcy from going on your credit record, which is a benefit that many people enjoy.

Will my spouse be implicated if I file for bankruptcy?

Not always. You can actually file for bankruptcy separately from your spouse. This means that even if you have a credit report that shows bankruptcy, your spouse’s credit will not be affected. You do, however, also have the choice as a couple to file jointly for bankruptcy. The personal decision to file for bankruptcy should always be discussed with your spouse, but you can also learn more about your situation and legal options by talking with an experienced Maryland bankruptcy attorney.

Isn’t bankruptcy bad for my finances? Why should I file?

Not at all. Bankruptcy is fast recovering from its reputation as a financial death sentence for debtors. In fact, bankruptcy can actually help you restore your financial stability over time. This is possible because, although your credit score and record will be marked temporarily by bankruptcy, the most certain way to truly ruin your finances is to do nothing about your debt. Filing for bankruptcy can help you address your outstanding debt and begin to reset your financial situation, eventually regaining independence.

What can I do to avoid foreclosure?

Foreclosure can be an extremely difficult prospect to face, not only because it can result in the loss of your home, but also because it can do substantial damage to your financial standing, making it difficult to find a new place of residence. Fortunately, there are steps that homeowners can take to avoid foreclosure. Depending on the exact nature of your situation, it may be possible to pursue mortgage modification with your lender, fight the foreclosure process with legal action, or even file for bankruptcy to put a halt to foreclosure proceedings.

Can anyone file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a popular option for many debtors because it allows for the total resolution of most types of debt. However, not all debtors are eligible to pursue this type of bankruptcy. In order to be eligible to apply for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, the debtor’s income must meet certain standards. For instance, if the individual’s income is less than the median for a household of their size in Maryland, they are eligible to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Others may also be eligible to apply for Chapter 7 bankruptcy if they pass what is known as a means test.

Do I need an attorney to file for bankruptcy?

There is no requirement that individuals pursuing bankruptcy protection have the representation of an attorney. However, because of the complexity of the process and in consideration of how extraordinarily important the successful resolution of the bankruptcy process is to a person’s financial future, it is usually best to enlist legal counsel before filing for bankruptcy. An attorney can help you determine which form of bankruptcy will be best for you and your family, and take you through every stage of the process while protecting your assets and interests to the fullest extent of the law.

If I file for bankruptcy, will everything I own be repossessed?

Many people assume that bankruptcy necessarily involves losing all of their most cherished possessions. However, the reality is that filing for bankruptcy is actually often one of the only ways that those struggling with serious debt issues can keep what they own. Chapter 13 bankruptcy, for instance, does not involve the liquidation of any personal assets. While Chapter 7 bankruptcy does require the debtor to forfeit some of their belongings to resolve their debts, there are important exemptions that can allow debtors to keep their most important and valuable assets.