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IL bankruptcy lawyerThe United States Bankruptcy Code allows for different types of bankruptcy under certain circumstances. Only some of these are available to individuals, with the two most common types of bankruptcies being Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. Even though the steps taken to discharge debts are different, both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies must take a few common steps. One of those steps is the meeting of creditors, also known as the “341 meeting of creditors” or the “341 hearing” after the portion of bankruptcy code it is written into. No matter the type of bankruptcy you end up filing for, understanding the steps of the bankruptcy process are important.

What Is a 341 Meeting of Creditors?

In most cases, you will not have to appear in court before a judge to complete your bankruptcy. One of the most important steps of the bankruptcy process is the 341 meeting of creditors, which typically takes place in a courthouse, with a trustee presiding over the hearing, rather than a judge. The purpose of the meeting of creditors is essentially for the bankruptcy trustee to verify your identity, ensure your forms are filled out correctly and that all of the information given is accurate.

What Will Happen During the Meeting?

At your meeting of creditors, your trustee will likely also have scheduled other cases to be heard at the same time. Once your name is called, your trustee will ask you to verify your identity before beginning. Once you have done that, the trustee will then have the opportunity to ask any questions pertaining to your finances, such as whether or not you are expecting any sources of income in the future, such as inheritance. Your trustee may also ask you to verify information about your job, income, assets, and other information they wish to clarify. Your creditors, or the entities you owe money to, are notified of the hearing and have the opportunity to appear at the hearing and ask questions relating to your financial situation, though this is uncommon.

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TX bankruptcy lawyer, Texas chapter 13 lawyer, Texas chapter 7 lawyer, For most people, filing for bankruptcy is a last resort. It can be easy to dig yourself into a pit of debt that you are unable to climb out of. Once the bills start becoming due, it can feel like an ocean wave washing over you, with you struggling to stay above water. Not paying your bills can cause creditors to resort to collections actions, such as wage garnishment and repossession. Once you file for bankruptcy, however, all of those collections actions must stop. This is what is known as the automatic stay.

Understanding the Automatic Stay

The automatic stay is a provision in the U.S. Bankruptcy Code that temporarily halts collections attempts from all creditors. The automatic stay goes into effect immediately after you file for bankruptcy and prevents any and all creditors from contacting you about debts you may have with them. The automatic stay does not last forever. As soon as your bankruptcy case is finished, the automatic stay is lifted.

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TX bankrupcty lawyers, TX chapter 7 lawyersBeing in debt can feel like you are drowning, especially if you are so far into debt that you do not see a way out. Whatever the reason for the extreme amount of debt, there are options that you can consider to help with the debt. For many people, bankruptcy can be the right option to relieve them of most, or even all of their debt. However, filing for bankruptcy is not easy and can actually be quite complicated and confusing. Each bankruptcy case is different, so it is not always simple for you to know what to expect after you declare bankruptcy. Here are a few things you should know if you are considering filing for bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy Does Not Happen Overnight

Some people think of bankruptcy as being similar to small claims court where you usually receive your disposition the same day you attend court. This is not the case. The bankruptcy process is complex and typically lasts at least a few months if you file for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the case is open and ongoing for three to five years, the duration of your repayment plan.

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chapter 13 bankruptcy attorney, TX chapter 13 lawyerFor many people, filing for bankruptcy is a fresh start in life. If you have filed for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you are still technically paying off your debts, just in a manner that is more manageable for you. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy consolidates all of your debt and creates a repayment plan that lasts for three to five years, depending on your situation. Your monthly payment amount is more than just taking the amount of debt to be repaid and dividing by the number of months you are required to pay. The amount that you are ordered to pay each month is the result of a formula that takes into account your income, assets, debts, and expenses. For some people, this number is a manageable payment. For others, it can be a burden or become one because of a variety of situations.

Qualifying for a Modification

Not everyone can qualify to get their Chapter 13 repayment plan modified. The courts will not entertain a request to modify your plan just because -- you have to have a legitimate reason/need for the modification. The most common reason modifications are granted to Chapter 13 repayment plans is because of changed circumstances. These circumstances must be significant enough to severely limit your ability to meet the terms of your current repayment plan. Examples of a significant change in circumstances include:

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trusteeThe most common types of bankruptcies that are filed in the United States are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. There are many differences between a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, mainly in the way that the debts are handled. While these two types of bankruptcies differ greatly in many aspects, they do have one thing in common -- they both utilize a bankruptcy trustee.

If you have thought about getting a bankruptcy or you have done research about getting one, you have probably come across the term -- but do you know what a bankruptcy trustee is? It is important to understand the role of the trustee if you are getting a bankruptcy or considering one.

What Is a Bankruptcy Trustee?

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