The alarming rise in the rate of foreclosures across the nations has been a familiar topic in the news over the last several years. Many families who never dreamed of being in this situation are struggling to keep their homes. For a large percentage of them, losing their home through foreclosure will become an unavoidable […]
You are an honest debtor but for various reasons have lost control over your finances and are behind in your car payments. You have decided that filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy today is the best option for a better life tomorrow. However, you need your car for work and you are concerned that if you lose […]
The decision to file bankruptcy may be one of the most important financial decisions of your financial life. While it will provide you with a fresh start financially, it can also scar your credit history for a significant period of time. Success in bankruptcy means making sure that the advantages of filing bankruptcy outweighs its […]
There are several features of bankruptcy proceedings that are present in nearly in every case. The traditional features of bankruptcy proceedings include the trustee, automatic stays, executory contracts and the Meeting of Creditors. The new additions to this list are the Means Test and Credit Counseling, which were both established by the 2005 bankruptcy reforms. […]
There is a widespread misconception amongst Oklahomans that with the new bankruptcy law of 2005 the average debtor lost the right to file bankruptcy, except in the most extreme circumstances. Although the new bankruptcy laws have made it more difficult for some to file bankruptcy, the average individual who finds himself overwhelmed by debt can […]
Bankruptcy is a lengthy process filled with words that the average individual will be unfamiliar with. To better understand and communicate with your attorney, it would be helpful to familiarize yourself with Oklahoma bankruptcy terms you will need to know. Automatic Stay As soon as you file for bankruptcy, an “automatic stay” goes into effect. […]
As a bankruptcy attorney, I’m glad that so many Oklahomans see the folly of delving into a complex process without professional advice or experience. I think an attorney’s skilled counsel provides bankruptcy filers a greater level of personal confidence and financial security during a time when they are struggling with not only debt, but the emotional and social impact of insurmountable debt. Yet, I know that in spite of my warning, there will still be those of you determined to file Chapter 7 pro se. For my Oklahoma neighbors who may consider filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy without an attorney, here’s an overview of the steps you’ll need to go through if you file Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
A creditor with a four-person family in Oklahoma with a family income of more than about $63,069 annually must complete the means test to qualify for Chapter 7. The means test allows some high-income debtors to file Chapter 7 when faced with certain expenses.
If you’ve received a lump-sum payment or ongoing SSI benefits and anticipate filing bankruptcy, you may need to show how much of your cash on hand resulted from Social Security payments. Because they’re exempt under bankruptcy law, it is essential to keep those funds in a separate account. Avoid commingling that income with any other money.
For anyone who has ever had the misfortune of trying to survive under the heavy weight of a garnishment, you know just how debilitating it can be. This problem that I see all too often in my line of work as a bankruptcy attorney in Oklahoma City Oklahoma prompts this post. Obviously, the best way […]
There are many unfortunate things in life. Not the least of which are Divorce and Bankruptcy. As if the misfortune of having either of these happen to you is not enough, sadly, often both come at you at the same time. Sometimes it is that marital problems arise because of financial problems. Sometimes it is […]
Most people when filing bankruptcy have some debt secured by assets that they would like to keep. For instance, they might have a house with a mortgage or a car with a car payment. In these circumstances (assuming there is a bankruptcy exemption to cover the assets, which there normally is) the chapter 7 filer […]
I have had several clients in the last few years whose cases I did not take because they were judgment-proof. This is usually the designation that I reserve for someone that is under these or similar circumstances: Has only Social security income or other income exempt from garnishment, levy or other process. No real property […]
A common question I get from clients at the Debt Line Law Office, is, “What should I do about that Petition I was just served with from a creditor.” Below is the general outline of the advice I give. The Summons will tell you the time that you have to file an Answer or […]
Bankruptcy documents are cumbersome and complicated. Then again, so are your finances if you are seriously considering filing bankruptcy. It is no wonder that, in the flurry of preparing and getting your bankruptcy attorney all the information to file your case there will be an inevitable omission or two or even three. The fact is […]
The State of Oklahoma has very good exemptions compared to other states. Exemptions define the property that a person filing for bankruptcy in Oklahoma can keep and still discharge their debts. One such exemption is that the debtors in bankruptcy can exempt up to $7,500 of equity in a vehicle. This means you can keep […]
I just spent the last 3 hours pouring through Oklahoma case law researching the issue of what can be considered “furniture” and thus exempt under the Oklahoma exemption covering “All household and kitchen furniture”. Because there is no specific language for a TV, piano, washer and dryer, vacuum cleaner, I have always just lumped those […]
There is this common misconception with regard to bankruptcy that, upon filing bankruptcy, there will be someone sent to your home to catalogue all of your belongings and report back to the Trustee their findings. This is not how it works at all. On the contrary, when you fill out your schedules you are charged […]
Many people are turning to bankruptcy these days. Many of these people have been driven to it due to the fact that they can no longer make the payment on their mortgage. Many have come to me seeking to keep a home that they probably should have never bought in the first place. Yet others turn to bankruptcy because […]
Bankruptcy is generally considered to be a last option. But trying too hard to avoid bankruptcy can hurt you. I signed up a client yesterday who had been going through financial problems for months. He wanted to avoid bankruptcy and thought he could get through the debt problems on his own. I believe that people […]