Do you have questions about filing for bankruptcy under Chapter 7? If so, you aren’t alone. We talk to people every day who have questions about the Chapter 7 filing process and whether a “liquidation” bankruptcy is the right choice for them.
Here are the answers to some of the most common questions we receive:
There are two ways to qualify for chapter 7 bankruptcy in New Jersey. First, you can qualify if your income is below the state’s median income level. Second, regardless of whether you earn less than the median, you can qualify if you satisfy the Chapter 7 “means test.”
To earn less than New Jersey’s median income level, you must make less than $71,941 per year if you live alone, and you and your spouse or partner must make less than $88,511 per year if you live in a two-person household.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a process for eliminating debts that you cannot afford to pay. While not all debts are eligible to be eliminated in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy many are, and many people can get a completely fresh start by going through the process.
Chapter 7 exemptions allow you to keep certain pieces of property when “liquidating” your assets to pay off your debts. Your bankruptcy lawyer will be able to explain which of your assets are exempt.
Chapter 7 bankruptcies usually take less than six months, and many people can have their debts eliminated in as little as three to four months.
Lots of things happen when you file for bankruptcy in New Jersey. To learn what you should expect, you can read our overview of the bankruptcy process.
There are no minimum or maximum debt limits under Chapter 7.
What happens to most of your assets depends on the types of assets you own, among other factors. While you may need to liquidate certain assets during the process, you will likely be able to keep many of your assets—and you may even be able to keep all of them depending on your circumstances.
Yes, you can file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy yourself in New Jersey. But, due to the complexities involved—and the importance of navigating the process successfully—it is best to have an experienced lawyer on your side.
Certain types of debts are not eligible to be forgiven under Chapter 7. These include student loan debt, child and spousal support debt, and most unpaid taxes (among others). Your lawyer can help you determine if filing under Chapter 7 makes sense based on your individual circumstances.
Do you have more questions about Chapter 7? If so, we invite you to get in touch. Call 866-964-6529 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation.