Is This A Smart Idea?
Two subjects are always cropping up on this group - the fine line between smart pre-bankruptcy planning anf BK fraud. The the other - how to get or keep a car during or just before filing BK. So, at the risk of sounding like a broken record, I really need some help on this one (our attorney is vague -he seems to "roll over" to our thought's too easiliy). In Summer 2002 we handed back our truck to the bank and replaced it for my wife to drive to work with a $600 car. We currently make our $546 payments (for 3 years now) on a 1999 van. We dont want the van - its upside down on the loan and its just too much of a loan balance - and still 35 payments to go. PROBLEM - like most people I need a vehicle to get to work. I want to finance a van thats about a $7,000 loan - and still pay it off at $400 - $500 per month (about 18 payments) -this way I will not have excess income in our Ch.7.My plan is to give the van back to the bank and buy this cheaper van, but still have a monthly payments thats "high". So is this just plain smart? If I were the Trustee I would see that we have downgraded from a 2002 truck with a $29,000 loan and a 1999 van with a $19,000 loan - and now have a $7,000 loan on a van and a $600 car thats paid for.
It varies from state to state and from trustee to trustee. Some have no problem with this; others have a huge problem with it. Discuss the matter with your attorney before you file, and get him to put his answer in writing to protect you if there is a problem.
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