If you're trapped in an endless cycle of debt, you're probably have a lot of questions about bankruptcy. There is a tremendous amount of misinformation about bankruptcy on the internet, making it difficult to know what to believe. This web page was created to answer the most frequently asked questions encountered by our Seattle bankruptcy attorneys.
One of the greatest benefits of filing for bankruptcy is that all debt collection stops immediately. Bill collectors can no longer contact you. Your vehicle is protected from repossession. You house is protected from foreclosure. All wage garnishments stop immediately. In fact, all bill collections stop immediately, including credit cards and medical bills.
Rather than allow your debt to control your life, contact one of our Seattle bankruptcy lawyers today and find out whether you qualify. If you would rather just collect some reliable information about bankruptcy, read the following list of frequently asked questions and than decide if you would like to take the next step.
If You Have Questions, Our Seattle Bankruptcy Attorneys Have Answers
Our King County bankruptcy lawyers offer a free consultation, so when you're ready to take the next step, simply give us a call.
How much will filing for bankruptcy cost?
There is no way to answer this question without taking a hard look at your finances. However, our bankruptcy attorneys charge an affordable flat fee, and we can even outline some ways to generate this money if you're lacking the funds.
How long does bankruptcy stay on my credit report?
Chapter 13 bankruptcies remain on your credit report for 7 years after your debt is discharged. Chapter 7 bankruptcies remain for 10 years.
If I owe family or friends money, am I allowed to pay them back?
Yes. However, you should wait for a least a year after you file. You are not legally required to pay back these loans, but you certainly can choose to do so.
Will bankruptcy discharge student loans that aren't federal?
If I file for bankruptcy, can I keep my car/house?
Yes. Almost everyone that files for bankruptcy maintains possession of their car and home. If you refinance your house, you should do so with a different bank.
How long does it take to complete the bankruptcy process?
Chapter 7 takes about 3 to 4 months, and Chapter 13 takes 3 to 5 years.
How much will I end up paying if I file Chapter 13?
Your Seattle bankruptcy lawyer needs to consider a number of variables to figure out this amount. First, a means test is used to determine your income. We then calculate how much money you are required to pay back on unsecured debt, which may be nothing at all. Other debts are then added, including IRS, vehicle, home mortgage, penalties, arrears, and unsecured debt you want to keep (like a monthly car payment). We then add your trustee fee and any remaining lawyer's fees. If the final amount is less than your total debt divided by the duration of the debt consolidation plan, your plan is 100%.
Am I allowed to keep a credit card?
You can, if the financial institution allows you to keep it and it has zero debt.
Do I have to list money owed to a friend or family member?
You are required to list all debt, and this certainly qualifies.
When can I start rebuilding my credit score?
Once your debt is discharged, most people discover that their credit score improves faster than they anticipated.
Contact one of our Seattle bankruptcy lawyers today for a free consultation and get all of your questions answered by an experienced legal professional.
We serve clients throughout Washington including, but not limited to, those in the following localities: King County including Auburn, Bellevue, Burien, Federal Way, Kent, Redmond, Renton, Seattle, and Shoreline; Pierce County including Gig Harbor, Lakewood, Parkland, Puyallup, Spanaway, and Tacoma; Snohomish County including, Arlington, Edmonds, Everett, Lynnwood, Marysville, Monroe, and Mountlake Terrace; and Thurston County including Lacey, Olympia, and Tumwater.