Bankruptcy may be intimidating for those who are not familiar with the process. But with the help of a bankruptcy attorney in St. Petersburg, you can manage your debt and get back on the right foot. People who pursue bankruptcy often do so because filing can:
- Protect your home from foreclosure
- Stop debt collection attempts
- Prevent utility companies from cutting off power and water
- Give you more time to readjust your debts
Chapter 7 discharges your debt, but this does not include student loan debt. There are unique circumstances that exist for student loan debt, but largely, you are responsible for paying it off. If the debtor or their dependents are under undue hardship, they may be able to seek a discharge for their student loan debt.
Whether you file for chapter 7 or 13, you must fill out and complete all necessary forms. Everyone who files for bankruptcy must complete the necessary forms for the federal government, which may include:
- Voluntary Petition for Individuals Filing for Bankruptcy
- Summary of Your Assets and Liabilities and Certain Statistical Information
- Statement of Current Monthly Income
- Chapter 7 Means Test Calculation
- Chapter 13 Calculation of Your Disposable Income
In Florida, residents cannot use federal exemptions, and must instead use the state’s exemptions. Potential exemptions may include:
- Homestead exemptions
- Certain personal property up to $1,000
- Up to $1,000 in motor vehicle equity
- Up to $4,000 in personal property if not using the homestead exemption
- Certain pension and retirement funds like 401ks and Simple IRAs
Your St. Petersburg bankruptcy attorney can go over the various exemptions available and help you determine which ones are applicable to your situation.
What You Need to Know When Filing for Bankruptcy
When you file, you must submit a repayment plan detailing your debts like child support, vehicle loans, mortgages, and tax liens and how you plan to repay them. A bankruptcy attorney in St. Petersburg can help you devise a plan that allows you to comfortably pay your debts. Unsecured debts, like medical bills and credit cards, must be less than $336,900 and secured debt, like mortgages, must be less than $1,010,650.
Filing for bankruptcy will leave a lasting impact on your credit; it will stay on your record for ten years. This can influence your ability to loan a car, rent a home, get a credit card, and more.