Chapter 7 is known as the "fresh start" bankruptcy. Generally speaking, most debts such as credit card, medical bills, loans, utilities, and income taxes older than 36 months are completely discharged in a Chapter 7 case. Also, like income tax filing, a married couple is allowed to file a single joint Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. Unlike other legal proceedings, full protection of the federal court is given to a bankruptcy client on day one. No creditor contact with the client is permitted in any way, all legal proceeding against the client are stopped and all payments to creditors are suspended. Chapter 7 proceedings, as stated, are effective instantly; they generally take about four months to complete with only a single hearing required in most cases.
Chapter 13 is known as the "wage earners plan". Although wages can consist of many types of "income" such a rent, unemployment benefits, social security payments, disability insurance payments, pensions and other forms benefits or income. Chapter 13 is a reorganization proceeding. It is widely employed to stop residential foreclosure proceedings and allow the client some "breathing room" to reorganize their debts. Where the first mortgage balance on a home exceeds the fair market value of the home, referred to as "under water", any second mortgage or equity loan can be avoided in its entirety. A Chapter 13 case can last from 36 months up to 60 months. Presently, in this highly distressed real estate market, a Chapter 13 proceeding can be an effective way to adjust the mortgage balance on your home to correspond to the present value of the home.
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Family law regulates the legal relationships of people who are connected to each other by marriage, civil unions, family and relations, or where there is a custodianship, trusteeship or legal guardianship in place. Especially with the complicated circumstances of this area, it is highly recommended to seek advice of expert specialist attorneys. Are you having legal issues regarding marriage, adoption, divorce or seeking custody of your children? We focus much of our practice on family law, so we can guide you through the challenges you face, no matter what they are.
For example, divorce is something that we all hope to avoid. However, it may be the only reasonable option sometimes. If you are ever in this situation, remember that you have rights under the law - including an equitable distribution of the marital property. We can help to ensure that in the event of a divorce, your legal rights remain secure.
Our services in this area of law: