Archive for June, 2011

Frequently Asked Questions About Bankruptcy in Kansas

Sunday, June 5th, 2011

Considering bankruptcy is a difficult step for most people. Because the federal laws governing bankruptcy protection are so complex, you may feel overwhelmed as you try to understand the qualifications and requirements, as well as the repercussions you may face once your petition is filed. Here are a few of the more commonly asked questions about bankruptcy.

Question: Will I lose my home if I file for bankruptcy?

Answer: Not necessarily. If you don’t have much equity in the property, and provided that you can keep up your mortgage payments, you may be able to file for Chapter 7 without losing your home. However, if you more equity in your home than your state allows, consider filing for Chapter 13 instead. If you meet the requirements for Chapter 13 and have enough disposable income to make regular payments toward your debts for the 3- or 5-year repayment period, you may still be able to keep your home.

Question: Will I lose my retirement savings?

Answer: No. Retirement accounts, 401(k) plans and pensions are exempt from liquidation if you file for bankruptcy. However, you do still need to report those accounts along with your other assets.

Question: How much will it cost to file?

Answer: Some costs are set by federal law and are consistent in all states. Those include a court filing fee of $245; a miscellaneous administrative fee of $39; and a trustee fee of $15. These fees are payable at the time of filing. In addition to filing fees, you will have to pay your attorney. Some lawyers require full payment of their fees up front. Others are willing to establish a payment plan. Discuss your situation with your lawyer during your initial consultation.

Question: What possessions can I keep if I file for bankruptcy?

Answer: Each state sets laws that limit the type and value of personal possessions you can keep. All states provide a homestead exemption, but the amount of the exemption varies widely. Your attorney can advise you more specifically based on your state of residence, but generally speaking, the law requires that major assets be liquidated to pay off creditors while allowing you to keep basic living items and those needed to perform in your profession.

Question: Can I repay any of my debts after discharge if I choose to do so?

Answer: Yes. After your debts are discharged, you can repay any or all of them that you choose.

Talking to an experienced Wichita bankruptcy attorney will provide you with answers to your specific questions and will outline the requirements in force in your state of residence.  Many people that try and represent themselves in bankruptcy filings and hearings end up with debts that must be paid. Call us today, we can help.