What is Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy is the legal proceeding involving a person (Chapter 7 & Chapter 13) or a business (Chapter 11) that is unable to repay outstanding debts. The bankruptcy process can deliver freedom from debt to individuals and business while simultaneously providing repayment for their creditors. A bankruptcy begins with a petition filed by the debtor or on behalf of their creditors although that second option is not very common. All of the debtor’s assets are measured and evaluated, and the assets may be used to repay a portion of outstanding debts.
Who can benefit from filing Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy can provide a fresh start to eligible consumers by wiping out (discharging) certain debts like credit cards and a variety of different loans. Bankruptcy can also be used (in certain circumstances) as a way to:
- Stop and recover garnishment funds
- Stop repossessions
- Reduce car loan balances and interest rates
- Stop foreclosures and cure mortgage arrears
- Eliminate or reduce taxes
Even with all of these wonderful benefits, our firm believes that bankruptcy should be a last resort for anyone in financial distress.
Which BK filing is right for you?
In order to determine which bankruptcy filing might be right for you, ask yourself these questions.
- Are you a corporation or partnership?
- Are you an individual or married couple?
If you answered yes to question number 1, your only options are Chapter 7 or Chapter 11 (corporations and partnerships cannot file Chapter 13). If you answered yes to question number 2, any chapter may work for you depending on your circumstances and you should review each Chapter or [schedule a consultation] to have your options evaluated and explained.
What are these Chapters and how do they work?
You may or may not know that there are different types of bankruptcy filings. These types are called chapters because they refer to different chapters in the United States Bankruptcy Code. Each of these chapters allow for different types of debt relief for different types of individuals and entities. For this page we will focus more on Chapter 7, Chapter 11, and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy and ignore Chapters 9, 12, and 15.
You might also not be aware that there are qualifications and criteria for each of these bankruptcy filings.
- A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is sometimes referred to as a “personal bankruptcy” case. Chapter 7 has also been called a “Personal Bankruptcy”, “Straight Bankruptcy,” and “Bankruptcy Liquidation”.
- Chapter 11 is a Reorganization or Restructuring of corporations and partnerships. (Corporations and partnerships can also file a Chapter 7)
- Chapter 13 is a Reorganization/debt repayment for individuals with “regular income”.
THE NEW KID ON THE BLOCK – CHAPTER 11 LIGHT
Chapter 11 Sub-Chapter 5
With the COVID19 virus came special legislation to protect small businesses in general as they are the backbone of the American economy. Essentially, the Subchapter 5 is a Chapter 11 that is expedited and has more debtor control. It reduces many other requirements of a traditional Chapter 11 bankruptcy, allowing for a substantial reduction in cost and time. The Debtor has to still divulge and let the creditors know projections and the financials of the business, but some of this is relaxed and can be estimated. Further, the Debtor is more in control as they are the sole entity to propose a plan (or budget) to the court for approval. Also, in doing so they are allowed to project and use good faith estimates in doing so for future growth. In a traditional Chapter 11, the trustee or the creditors can do that for the Debtor and more hard concrete numbers are required to propose and backup the plan and the “growth” of the company. Further, the plan must be either agreed to by all parties or the court has to approve it over objections within approximately 3 months from the start of the bankruptcy or it will be dismissed. This is a limited and time sensitive option as it only exists for a year from the implementation of the legislation or early 2021.
Why choose us?
We understand where you're coming from. Members of our team have experienced extreme financial difficulty in the past and are here to help you get through these troubling times.
Our Senior Attorney has been practicing law in Florida for over 12 years and knows Bankruptcies inside and out. You can utilize his years of experience to navigate your current situation and find a solution.
We are a passionate and aggressive firm dedicated to protecting consumer rights. If any of your creditors have violated your rights, WE WILL pursue them for damages on your behalf.