Any Advice For A Neophyte Would Be Appreciated..
My situation: 37 yo, married, no dependents, approx. $35-40K in cc and revolving charge account debts. Household income for this year will probably be around $40K. Renter, living paycheck to paycheck, no savings, no retirement, actually, no assets more valuable than household items (computer, washer/dryer, guitar, etc.). No life (LOL). Anyhoo... My questions: Is Chapter 7 the desired avenue I should pursue? (I'd like to get this albatross off of my neck in it's entirety, with no looking backwards...) Are the changes/proposed changes in bankruptcy law that I've occassionally heard about on CNN/USA Today already in effect? Is it too late? How do I find a competent, reputable bankruptcy lawyer/attorney other than taking a crap shoot in the yellow pages? (I live in San Antonio, Texas) How much should I expect to pay for the entire process/attorney? Anything I should be cognizant of prior to initiating this process? (what to expect, 'heads up' kinda stuff....
Advice from a fellow debtor, seek competent legal advice before my ignorance causes problems for you. 1) The new law has not been passed and may die quietly this election year. (organized labor and anti-abortion activists feel threatened by some language in an amendment to the new law. Both parties have scaled back their enthusiasm for passing the bill into law.) http://www.bankruptcyaction.com/bankreform.htm#stalled http://groups.google.com/groups?dq=&hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&safe=off&selm=... 2) Chapter 7 (liquidation) sounds right as you express your situation. You should find out what your exempt asset entitlements are before filing. (some equity in your car should be allowed as an exempt asset. And, some dollar amount [value estimated according to what might be returned at a sheriff's auction] in personal effects is also exempted.) Be honest when valuing your personal effects. I hope your guitar is replaceable and that your creditors are reasonable. 3) Chapter 13 (adjustment) might be desirable if you own non-exempt assets (or equities) that you do not want to risk in a Chapter 7.
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