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Why to get a chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney in Knoxville, TN
February 4, 2021 at 11:00 PM
A chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney Knoxville, TN, will put your debt in your rearview.

If you’re considering filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy, it’s essential you do so with a chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney in Knoxville, TN. The process is convoluted and nuanced. Without an expert to guide you, it can be overwhelming and you can end up doing more damage and forfeiting more than you have to.

And, at DZ Law, we’ve been providing expert bankruptcy counsel in Knoxville, TN, for years. We pride ourselves on trust and transparency. However, if you’re wondering what chapter 7 bankruptcy is exactly, let’s get into it.

What is chapter 7 bankruptcy?

It’s important to get a chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney in Knoxville, TN, because the answer to this question can be complicated. In short, it’s the most common and quickest bankruptcy filing for individuals. It liquidates the debtors assets. It’s specifically for those with minimal to no disposable income. Therefore, you have to fall below the median income for Tennessee to qualify. There’s a test to determine if you qualify.

What does it entail?

Firstly, you should know there are eligibility requirements. You have to pass a means test and you can’t have filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy in the preceding eight years. And, most importantly, certain assets are exempt from liquidation. This is when a chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney in Knoxville, TN, is most important because it’s difficult to know what’s exempt and what isn’t.

Non-exempt assets are turned over to a bankruptcy trustee and sold to repay unsecured creditor’s debts. Unsecured debts are separated into classes or categories, each one getting a priority of payment. Secured debts are debts backed or secured by collateral to reduce the risk of lending. The debtor often has to forfeit secured property unless they’re willing to assume the debt and make punctual payments or one large lump sum equal to the value of said property.

The process

The process can be confusing and arduous, which is why it’s advisable to have a chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney in Knoxville, TN, on retainer.

First, you need to receive credit counseling within six months of filing. Then you have to fill out several forms and provide personal information, including a court petition and financial information. Afterward, the bankruptcy court assigns a trustee to moderate the process.

This trustee reviews and determines which assets can be liquidated to repay creditors. Then, the trustee schedules The Meeting of Creditors. They assess the validity of your petition and finances. Afterwards, property is divided between exempt and nonexempt.

Exempt property is needed to maintain a basic standard of living. Nonexempt property is seized. Oftentimes, you’ll be able to keep your primary home, car, and personal possessions. Lastly, your debt is discharged, which is typically received 2 months after The Meeting of Creditors.

The good and the bad

It’s important to understand the good and the bad of chapter 7 bankruptcy.

The good:

  • You get a fresh start
  • You keep future income
  • You don’t need debt repayment plans
  • It significantly relieves debt
  • It stops debt collection lawsuits
  • You often keep your property
  • It stops creditors from contacting you

The bad:

  • It appears on credit reports for 10 years
  • It severely damages ability to get loans
  • You can’t receive a chapter 7 discharge for eight years
  • Creditors can still collect on a discharged debt from a co-debtor if someone signed on the loan or debt and didn’t file for bankruptcy

Schedule a meeting now!

If you’re ready for a fresh start and a way out of suffocating debt, then consulting with a chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney in Knoxville, TN, could very well be your saving grace. Contact us now to schedule a meeting. We promise to clear your name to give you a clean slate.