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What are the Limitations on Debt Amounts in a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

The Bankruptcy Code imposes certain limitations on the Chapter 13 Plans.  Those limitations relate to the amount of debt you can have and still file a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy.  If your debts exceed these limitations, then you would have to consider filing a Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. Here are the debt limitations: 1. You cannot have unsecured debts of more than $336,900 – credit cards, medical bills, personal loans, etc. 2. You cannot have secured debts of more than $1,010,650 –  home mortgage, auto loan, home equity loan, etc. If your debts are within these limits,  you can file a Chapter 13 Plan.  Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is one of the most powerful tools in America to help you get your financial situation reorganized on back on…

Michigan Median Income Levels Change on November 1, 2010

The “New” Bankruptcy law from 2005 establishes a median income to determine whether you can file a Chapter 7 or whether you have to consider filing a Chapter 13. The median income is calculated on a State by State basis and is further determined by household size–just think of “heads on the beds.” As you may have guessed, things in Michigan are getting worse and the median income thresholds are decreasing.  Effective November 1, 2010, the Median Income figures for Michigan will change as follows: Household Size               Old                       New 1 person:                        $43,456 DOWN to $41.875. 2 persons:                       $52,433 DOWN to $49,919. 3 persons:                       $61,517 DOWN to $59,190. 4 persons:                       $74,558 DOWN to $70,600. 5 or more:  Add $7,500…

The Bankruptcy Checklist

Bankruptcy is a planning process which requires the disclosure of any and all documents and other information relating to your financial situation. Here is a checklist of documents and other information that I have put together to assist you in getting organized. I hope that you find it helpful. BANKRUPTCY CHECKLIST [   ]       Drivers License & Social Security Card [   ]       Date and Case Number of any previous Bankruptcy Discharge(s) [   ]       Credit Report (annualcreditreport.com) – Experian is the easiest to read [   ]       Certificate of Credit Counseling (I will sign you up for a class before you file) [   ]       Real Estate Deed* & Property Tax Statement (* copy of 1st recorded page) & BPO, Market Analysis or Appraisal of Fair Market Value (FMV)…

The Top 3 Reasons Why Clients Declare Bankruptcy

1.       Divorce. Divorce has a devastating impact on most people. It is one of the factors that led to my own bankruptcy. In my case, I had to assume the entire income tax liability for the year that I got divorced. I also had to assume all of the credit card and overdraft debt that my ex had accumulated. The financial pressure was unbelievable – then I lost my job. I had to try to start over dragging an incredible debt load from my past life – with no job. I finally came to my senses, found a good lawyer and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. In my practice today, I see the strain on everyone’s budget brought on by divorce. You have to try…

Is Bankruptcy Confidential? Who will find out about my bankruptcy?

I get this question a lot. My answer is that most people in your day to day life won’t know that you filed for bankruptcy unless you tell them. The only people that get notice of your bankruptcy filing are your creditors. If you don’t owe anybody money – they won’t get notice of your filing. And, most creditors are nationally based banks like Citicorp, Bank of America and HSBC. These big companies aren’t going to broadcast your situation – they don’t even send a representative to your 341 hearing. When I get this question, I always ask clients if they have ever heard of PACER. Every one says no. PACER is the federal website where your bankruptcy filing will be listed – but nobody…

What are the Top 10 Warning Signs of Bankruptcy?

1.         No health insurance or inadequate health insurance coverage. Medical and doctor bills are a huge factor in most bankruptcies. 2.         Dependence on credit cards for everything. If you use your credit cards to get cash advances to make minimum payments on other credit cards you are headed for disaster.  Credit card debt is the number one factor in every bankruptcy. Making minimum payments on credit cards and maxing out your credit cards are additional warning signs of insolvency. 3.         Over-using home equity loans. Before you use your home equity line of credit, make sure that you can afford to make the payments. Remember too, that your home equity line is secured by a mortgage – if you skip the payments, the bank will foreclose…

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