FAQ

Frequently asked questions


Q: How long does it take to file my bankruptcy case?
A: I’m waiting! Only as long as it takes you to call me, get me the required documents, and meet with me. I could get your bankruptcy case filed tomorrow if you have everything I need.

Q: Can I discharge medical bills?
A: Absolutely, this is one of the most common types of debt.

Q: Can I discharge credit card debt?
A: Absolutely, this is one of the most common types of debt.

Q: Can I discharge pay day loans?
A: Absolutely, this is one of the most common types of debt.

Q: Can I keep my car?
A: It depends. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you can keep your car, even if you were behind on payments when you filed the case. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you can also keep vehicles owned free-and-clear. No problem. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, Ohio law allows a single debtor to keep up to $3,775 of equity in a single vehicle. See Ohio Revised Code §2329.66. Chapter 7 bankruptcy also allows debtors to keep vehicles that do not have any equity (for example: vehicle is worth $18,000, debtor owes $19,000 = negative $1,000 equity), as long as the debtor is current on the payments at the time of filing the bankruptcy, and as long as they continue to make the payments during and after the bankruptcy.

Q: Will a bankruptcy stop a garnishment?
A: Yes. Immediately when the bankruptcy case is filed, all wage garnishment attempts will be stopped, and even any existing wage garnishments are required to stop.

Q: Will a bankruptcy stop a repossession?
A: Yes. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stop a repossession. That being said, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will only stop the repossession attempt temporarily – usually for 6 - 12 weeks until the financing company can file the necessary paperwork with the court in order to get relief from the bankruptcy protection (the bankruptcy protection is called the “automatic stay”). Filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy will immediately stop a repossession, and you may continue to keep the car, as long as you’re making the proper payments to the Chapter 13 Trustee.

Q: Will a bankruptcy stop a foreclosure?
A: Yes. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stop a foreclosure. That being said, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy will only stop the foreclosure attempt temporarily until the mortgage company is able to re-start the foreclosure process and complete the foreclosure with a sheriff’s sale – usually 6-12 months. Filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy will immediately stop a foreclosure, and you may continue to keep the house, as long as you’re making the proper payments to the Chapter 13 Trustee.

Q: Can I keep my house?
A: It depends. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you can keep your house, even if you were behind on payments when you filed the case. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you can also keep houses owned free-and-clear. No problem. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, Ohio law allows a single debtor to keep up to $136,925 of equity in their residence (see Ohio Revised Code §2329.66) as long as the debtor is current on the payments at the time of filing the bankruptcy, and as long as they continue to make the payments during and after the bankruptcy.

Q: How long is the process?
A: A Chapter 7 bankruptcy typically takes 4 or 5 months to go from the date of filing to the discharge date. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy typically takes 60 months to go from the date of filing to the discharge date, although in some instances it can be as short as 36 months, or in some even rarer instances, shorter than 36 months.

Q: How long does a bankruptcy stay on my credit report?
A: A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is allowed to be reported for 10 years after filing. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy is allowed to be reported for 7 years after filing.

Q: What is equity?
A: Equity is the value of an asset minus the liabilities attached to the asset. For example: a house is an asset. It is worth $100,000. The mortgage attached the house (liability) is $90,000. Equity is $10,000 ($100,000 value minus $90,000 liability).