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Archive for the ‘San Antonio Bankruptcy Attorney’ Category

Questions to Ask Yourself before Filing for Bankruptcy

July 24th, 2015 at 10:37 am

Texas chapter 7 lawyer, Texas bankruptcy attorney, Texas chapter 13 attorney,Americans make financial decisions every day of their lives, such as where to purchase food and how to save money on basic living expenses. However, few choices have implications that can match the seriousness of filing for bankruptcy.

Choosing to file for bankruptcy is a critical decision, but for millions of debtors, it is the first step toward financial stability. Although an attorney is the best source for guidance in this matter, here are three questions that can help you decide if bankruptcy is a smart option:

What Is My Current Financial Situation?

Your financial situation, which involves your asset value and income, can affect your eligibility for bankruptcy. If your income is too low, then you may not qualify for chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you file for chapter 7, then there is a chance that you would have to sell assets to pay creditors. These are important considerations before you decide to file.

Will Bankruptcy Actually Solve My Problems?

This is another question that may be difficult to answer without the help of an attorney. Each case is unique, so there may be bankruptcy alternatives that could apply to your situation.

Depending on the chapter you file, bankruptcy can resolve a long list of financial issues. First, it can stop harassment from collection agencies, according to Uscourts.gov. If you file for chapter 13, then you will have a structured repayment plan that can help you organize and manage your debt and finances. No matter which chapter you file, bankruptcy can ultimately lead to a life that is free from the stress that comes with insurmountable debt.

What Are My Long-Term Financial Goals?

Filing for bankruptcy does have certain consequences. It may be difficult to acquire a loan for a home, car, or another investment. You also may not have access to credit. As a result, bankruptcy may limit your financial goals. Before filing, it is important to evaluate these goals and determine how bankruptcy will affect them.

If you would like to learn if bankruptcy is a smart option in your situation, contact the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee at 210-342-3400 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced San Antonio bankruptcy attorney.

Debt Dilemmas: Common Concerns about Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Process

July 10th, 2015 at 7:10 pm

Texas chapter 13 lawyer, Texas chapter 7 attorney, Texas bankruptcy lawyer, There are many options available to Americans who want to resolve their debts, but for those who wish to avoid a mass liquidation of assets, chapter 13 bankruptcy may be the answer. If you are struggling with insurmountable debt, you likely have many questions and concerns about the chapter 13 bankruptcy process.

An experienced bankruptcy attorney can evaluate your situation, address your concerns, and provide recommendations for debt relief. In the meantime, here are three common questions about chapter 13 bankruptcy:

Will I Lose My Property?

Many first-time bankruptcy filers confuse chapter 7 and chapter 13 bankruptcies. Unlike chapter 13, chapter 7 bankruptcy involves liquidating assets to pay creditors. However, chapter 13 filers can keep their assets and instead pay debts through a structured repayment plan, according to Uscourts.gov.

What If I Cannot Keep up with My Payments?

Chapter 13 works by restructuring your debt into a more manageable payment plan that takes into account your total debt owed and your ability to pay. In some cases, it is possible to modify a repayment plan; however, debtors who cannot keep up with payments may eventually have to transfer their case to chapter 7 bankruptcy.

How Does Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Affect Tax Debts?

Bankruptcy laws treat credit card bills, mortgages, and similar debts differently than federal and state tax debts. However, chapter 13 bankruptcy places all of these debts – including tax debt – into the applicant’s payment plan.

If you are struggling with debt and want to know if chapter 13 bankruptcy is right for you, contact the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee. With more than two decades of experience as a skilled San Antonio bankruptcy lawyer, Mr. McGhee has the resources to guide you through the bankruptcy process. Call our office today for a free consultation at 210-342-3400.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: A Brief Overview of Eligibility and Asset Liquidation

June 19th, 2015 at 7:11 am

Texas chapter 7 attorney, Texas chapter 13 lawyer, Texas bankruptcy attorney,There is a multitude of relief options for Americans who are struggling with debt, and in some situations, filing for bankruptcy is a smart decision. Many debtors find that either chapter 13 or chapter 7 bankruptcy can put them on the path toward financial stability. Before filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy, though, it is important to understand if you are eligible and what may happen to your assets.

The best source of information about your unique bankruptcy case is an experienced attorney. A bankruptcy lawyer can evaluate your debts to determine which bankruptcy chapter – if any – is ideal for your particular situation. In the meantime, here is some important information about state median incomes and asset liquidation as they relate to filing for bankruptcy:

State Medians and Your Income

According to UScourts.gov, one of the factors that determine if a person qualifies for chapter 7 bankruptcy is his or her income. If your income is too high, a judge may request that you file for chapter 13 instead, because you will have the means to work with a structured payment plan. Of course, whether or not your income is high or low is relative to the state median.

Selling off Your Assets

Paying off debt through a liquidation of property is one of the distinguishing characteristics of chapter 7 bankruptcy — and it is perhaps one of the more worrying aspects. Many applicants are concerned about whether they will lose their homes, cars, and other property.

In some cases, it may be necessary to sell a home or vehicle in accordance with the chapter 7 bankruptcy process, but some property may be exempt from debtor collections. There is an intricate process involved in determining what assets qualify as exempt. A bankruptcy lawyer can help you understand what property may be safe from liquidation.

If you wish to speak with an experienced San Antonio bankruptcy attorney, contact the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee at 210-342-3400 to schedule a free consultation. With more than 20 years of experience in bankruptcy law, Mr. McGhee help you decide if filing for bankruptcy is a smart option.

Bankruptcy Filing Questions

June 12th, 2015 at 9:03 pm

Texas bankruptcy lawyer, San Antonio chapter 7 lawyer, Texas chapter 7 attorney,Making the decision to file for chapter 7 bankruptcy is not easy. The thought of selling a home and other assets to pay debt is stressful to say the least. However, chapter 7 bankruptcy is often a smart option for those who want to achieve financial independence and stop creditor actions.

Before filing any chapter of bankruptcy, it is important to learn about the process and qualification guidelines. There are certain questions you must ask, and an attorney can guide you through the proceedings, address your concerns, and ensure you do not make mistakes that compromise your interests.

If you are considering bankruptcy, be sure to ask your bankruptcy lawyer these two questions:

How Will My Income Affect My Bankruptcy Options?

An applicant’s income is one factor that determines whether chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy is the best course. If your income is greater than the state median, according to UScourts.gov, a request for chapter 7 may automatically convert to chapter 13 because the applicant will have the means to work with a structured payment plan.

How Much Debt Do I Owe?

One of the first steps in filing for bankruptcy is to calculate the total debt owed. This total may influence your eligibility for certain bankruptcy chapters, and there may be alternatives to bankruptcy based on the amount you owe.

Even relatively high amounts of debt may be manageable without bankruptcy — provided you are making concerted, proactive financial decisions. However, if you are finding that your living expenses are conflicting with your ability to make payments, then bankruptcy might indeed be the answer.

Different chapters do have maximum debt limits. For example, the maximum amount of unsecured debt allowed for chapter 13 bankruptcy filers is just greater than $380,000. The limit for secured debt is around $1,149,000. If your total debt is near these numbers, you should discuss your options with a lawyer.

If you would like to speak with a San Antonio bankruptcy attorney, contact the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee. Schedule a free initial consultation by calling 210-342-3400.

FAQs about Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

June 5th, 2015 at 8:12 am

Texas bankruptcy attorney, Texas chapter 7 lawyer, Texas chapter 13 attorney,Although much of the United States seems to have recovered from the Global Financial Crisis, thousands of Americans still declare bankruptcy every year. Although many are familiar with the general implications of bankruptcy, few first-time filers understand the intricate laws and how they relate to their particular case.

To shed some light on this complex legal field, here are four common chapter 7 bankruptcy FAQs:

What Makes Chapter 7 Unique?

Unlike chapter 13 bankruptcy, which restructures debt into a manageable payment plan, chapter 7 involves the liquidation of assets to pay off creditors. Depending on the types and amount of debt, chapter 7 bankruptcy may allow the filer to pay off his or her debts completely.

Is Chapter 7 Right for Me?

Before deciding to file for chapter 7 bankruptcy, you should find out if you qualify in the first place. Chapter 7 is available to any legal entity, individual or otherwise, according to Uscourts.gov.

In order to be eligible, you must attend credit counseling within 180 days before applying for chapter 7 bankruptcy. When filing, you must have enough income to pay your debts. There are other factors involving your legal and bankruptcy histories that may influence your eligibility. A bankruptcy attorney can assess your case to help you decide if filing for chapter 7 is the right decision.

What Information Will the Courts Require?

Like other forms of bankruptcy, chapter 7 requires an individual to file a petition. An attorney can help with the necessary paperwork. You will need to list all creditors, debts owed, and assets. You will also need to provide a comprehensive record of your income and living expenses.

Will I Lose My Home?

Chapter 7 involves the liquidation of assets to pay debts. You may have to sell your home or other properties during this process. However, this is not always necessary, and a lawyer can help you develop a bankruptcy plan that represents your best interests.

If you would like to speak with an experienced San Antonio bankruptcy attorney, call the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee at 210-342-3400 for a free consultation.

Credit Card Debt: Can I Keep My Credit Cards When Filing for Bankruptcy?

May 29th, 2015 at 6:26 am

Texas bankruptcy attorney, Texas Chapter 7 lawyer, Texas Chapter 13 lawyer,Most debtors face similar personal and emotional conflicts. The uncertainty that comes with insurmountable debt can cause immense stress, and many Americans feel overwhelmed with the complexities of financial recovery. Although many debtors share these concerns, each case is unique.

There are many causes of debt—from medical bills to a sudden loss of employment. One of the most common sources is credit card debt. With high interest rates and the convenience of credit, these cards land many Americans in financial turmoil. This article will shed some light on credit card debt and address some of the associated concerns.

Three Factors Determine If Your Credit Card Accounts Will Close Due to Bankruptcy

All bankruptcy filers must provide a complete record of their debts. This includes credit card debt.

At some point during the bankruptcy process, your creditors will receive a notification of your declaration of bankruptcy. Credit card companies can choose to cancel your cards after receiving this information. In most cases, creditors will consider three main factors when making the decision to close an account or to leave it open:

  1.       The total debt owed;
  2.       The type of bankruptcy filed;
  3.       And the account holder’s credit score.

Although you must report all debts, you do not have to report credit card accounts with a zero balance. However, the trustee may require you to relinquish your credit cards.

Bankruptcy Appears on Your Credit History

Even if a creditor does not receive a notification of your bankruptcy, the information will still appear on your credit report. As a result, all of your credit card providers have access to this information. Upon review of your credit report, the creditor may choose to cancel the account.

Consult a Bankruptcy Attorney for Helpful Insight

Because each bankruptcy case is unique, an assessment from an experienced San Antonio bankruptcy attorney may prove invaluable. An attorney can provide useful insight and help you avoid making mistakes during the bankruptcy process. If you would like to speak with a bankruptcy lawyer, contact the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee at 210-342-3400.

Factors Which May Impact Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Eligibility

May 22nd, 2015 at 12:16 pm

Texas bankruptcy attorney, Texas chapter 13 lawyer, bankruptcy qualifications, Filing for chapter 13 bankruptcy is a smart option for thousands of Americans who struggle to pay their debts. Choosing to file bankruptcy is a major decision, and you should only do so after evaluating alternative options. You should also be aware of the bankruptcy qualifications that apply when attempting to file for chapter 13:

Personal Income

According to Uscourts.gov, personal income is the first criteria when filing for chapter 13 bankruptcy. Proof of a stable income is essential.

Remember that chapter 13 differs from other forms of bankruptcy in that it is not an outright dismissal or liquidation of debts. Instead, this chapter offers the option to restructure and pay off debts over time. This is only possible when the filer has a stable income. The length of the payment plan depends on how the filer’s income compares to the state median.

Total Debt

There is a limit to how much debt you can have when filing for chapter 13 bankruptcy. The current maximum for unsecured debt is $383,175, and the filer may have no more than $1,149,525 in secured debt. These amounts can shift based on the consumer price index.

Previous Dismissal

If your request for chapter 13 bankruptcy has been dismissed previously, you will not only be ineligible to apply for chapter 13, but you will also be unable to file for other chapters for a period of 180 days. Grounds for dismissal include failure to appear at hearings or violating court orders.

Attorney Chance M. McGhee is a dedicated San Antonio bankruptcy lawyer with more than 20 years of experience. He can help you understand your debt relief options and decide if filing for chapter 13 bankruptcy is a smart decision in your particular situation. Contact the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee at 210-342-3400 for a free consultation.

Are There Alternatives to Bankruptcy?

May 15th, 2015 at 9:04 pm

Texas chapter 7 lawyer, Texas chapter 13 attorney, Texas bankruptcy attorney,If you are considering bankruptcy, then you probably have several questions and concerns related to the bankruptcy process. There is no doubt about it: Filing for bankruptcy is a serious decision that can affect your personal and financial opportunities.

Here are the answers to three common questions about bankruptcy:

What Are the Alternatives to Filing for Bankruptcy?

In many cases, filing for bankruptcy is a smart decision that puts debtors on the path toward a debt-free life. However, it may not be the only option. Sometimes, aggressive budgeting and smart financial planning are enough to pay off debts.

Each case is unique, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution to repaying debt. Before you decide to file for bankruptcy, you should discuss the options with an attorney. Credit counseling services may also be helpful.

Will Bankruptcy Destroy My Credit?

According to the Federal Trade Commission, bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for as long as 10 years. Though this may seem like an eternity, many people do see their credit score steadily improve after filing for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy may impact your credit score, but refusing to address your debt is an even worse decision.

Will I Lose My Home during Bankruptcy?

Depending on the chapter they file, some debtors face foreclosure. Filing for chapter 13 bankruptcy is one way to maintain your home.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy involves the creation of a repayment plan, so it allows debtors to keep both their dischargeable and non-dischargeable assets. However, chapter 7 involves the liquidation of assets, and filing this chapter could lead to foreclosure.

Choosing which chapter to file is one of the most important steps in the bankruptcy process. Your income and several factors will affect this decision. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can recommend a bankruptcy chapter that would be ideal for your particular case.

If you would like to speak with a San Antonio bankruptcy attorney, contact the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee at 210-342-3400 for a free consultation.

Tips for Dealing with Debt Collectors

April 24th, 2015 at 9:53 am

Texas bankruptcy attorney, overdue bills, Texas chapter 7 lawyer, As anyone with experience can relate, debt collectors can make life stressful. The sound of a ringing phone is enough to cause anxiety, and although some collectors may be easier to work with, their persistent efforts can feel overwhelming.

Many debtors are surprised to find out that there may be several options available to help them climb out of debt. Some of these can stop the actions of collections agencies almost immediately. In the meantime, here are three tips for dealing with collector calls:

Answer the Phone

According to Creditcards.com, one of the most important steps when dealing with debt collectors is to be responsible and answer the phone. It is equally important to respond to any written notices. Even if the debt seems like it is not yours, do not let it stagnate. Ignoring calls and attempts to contact you can hurt your ability to work out a payment arrangement.

Note the Details of Each Call

There are several laws governing what collection agencies can and cannot do. It is important to take notes about each call just in case the collector is breaking the law. While on the phone, you should jot down:

  • The name of the collection agency;
  • The name of the agent you spoke with;
  • What time of day he or she called you;
  • The total balance owed;
  • Payment dates;
  • Any threatening or abusive language; and
  • Contact information.

If a collection agency has knowingly violated consumer laws, it may be required to pay you money. The only way to prove inexcusable activities, however, is to keep proper records of each conversation and transaction.

Do Not Agree to Payments You Cannot Make

The offer of scheduling a payment just to stop the calls seems tempting — even if you are not sure you can afford it. However, you should not make empty promises with debt collectors. Your credit report may show missed payments. It is better to ask the collector to call you another time when you have reviewed your finances fully and can schedule a realistic payment.

If you would like to end creditor harassment or inquire about other debt relief strategies including bankruptcy, contact an experienced San Antonio bankruptcy attorney. Call the Law Offices of Chance M. McGhee at 210-342-3400 for a free initial consultation.

How Bankruptcy Laws and Your Finances May Affect the Bankruptcy Process

April 10th, 2015 at 11:01 am

Texas bankruptcy attorney, national income median, Texas chapter 7 lawyer, In addition to the stress that bankruptcy can cause, there is a long list of steps that you must take before filing. However, you should keep in mind that bankruptcy can put you on the path toward a debt-free life, so completing the necessary procedures may be a smart decision.

According to the U.S. Government Printing Office, the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act passed in 2005. It requires people in Texas to complete credit counseling six months prior to filing for bankruptcy. You must also complete a financial management course after filing.

Your income and expenses may determine the bankruptcy chapter that you need to file. This is why chapter 7 filers must complete a means test to determine if their income is low enough.

Chapter 7 filers typically have incomes that are below the national median. In most cases, filers must be able to commit to at least $100 per month over the 60 months after filing.

When determining which chapter to file, you will need to calculate if you can pay at least 25 percent of your unsecured debts. These may include medical and credit card debts. If you cannot afford this, then you may need to file for chapter 7.

Before you file for chapter 7 bankruptcy, make sure you have the following information:

  •         Your current income amount and income sources;
  •         Financial transactions for the previous 48 months;
  •         Detailed list of all living expenses;
  •         Secured and unsecured debts;
  •         Value of applicable property and possessions;
  •         Income tax documents; and
  •         And loan or mortgage papers.

Your bankruptcy lawyer will help you file petitions for any exemptions. It is important to remember that any fraudulent documents or omissions found during the evaluation of your application can result in an immediate dismissal of your petition.

The First Step: Contact an Experienced Bankruptcy Attorney in Texas

A San Antonio bankruptcy lawyer can assess your case and help you determine if filing for bankruptcy is a smart decision. Attorney Chance McGhee has more than 20 years of experience helping people from all backgrounds get the fresh financial start they need through bankruptcy. Call 210-342-3400 to schedule a consultation.

Call today for a FREE Consultation

210-342-3400

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