Filing for Bankruptcy

An Experienced Attorney Can Navigate Bankruptcy in Somerset, PA

Filing for bankruptcy provides some financial relief. If you live in Somerset, PA, and struggle to pay off debt, bankruptcy can help. The process of filing in Somerset, PA, can be confusing. However, the attorneys at Marc T. Valentine & Associates PC can help. This month, we will explain how filing for bankruptcy works in Somerset, PA.

First, we will explain the concept of bankruptcy. Then, our law firm will provide you with tips to consider before filing. Finally, our attorneys will explain when the best time to meet with a lawyer about bankruptcy is. Marc T. Valentine & Associates PC prides itself on educating our clients in Somerset, PA, about filing for bankruptcy.

Learn What the Inability to Pay Debts Truly Means

Bankruptcy is a court proceeding where a judge tells you to pay your debts. The judge looks through your assets and liabilities along with the court trustee. If they find you have no means to pay off your debt,  you’ll start to go through the process. Several different acts about this have popped up during difficult economic times. The Bankruptcy Act of 1898 said that creditors didn’t have to approve anything. This act stuck around until The Bankruptcy Act of 1978 passed. These are the laws we follow today.

Consider the Following Tips for Filing for Bankruptcy

Along with ensuring that you meet the requirements, it’s essential to consider some factors to facilitate the process. An experienced attorney can help guide you in following the tips below to make your case easier:

Check Your Credit Report

Individuals can request one free annual copy of their credit report. We recommend taking advantage of this opportunity to know all the debts you owe.

Identify Your Debts

Ensure your debts are dischargeable before filing. Dischargeable debts include medical bills, personal, loans and more.

Gather Paperwork

Individuals must present as many bank statements, pay stubs, tax returns, credit reports, and bills as possible. Our team recommends gathering all of this as soon as possible.

Explore All Options

Before committing to the process, confirm that bankruptcy is the best avenue possible.

Consider How You Will File

Married couples have a few filing options; spouses can file individually or jointly. No matter your status, you have options if you choose to file.

Don’t Try to Hide Assets

Avoid the temptation to sell some of your valuable assets prior to declaring for bankruptcy. Asset concealment is a form of bankruptcy fraud that can result in criminal prosecution.

When Should I Meet with A Lawyer to Start Filing for Bankruptcy?

Surveys show that job loss and medical debt are the two biggest reasons to consider filing. However, some other less imposing situations could cause you to meet with an attorney earlier to start the process. Here are some cases when you should consider filing:

  • You’re going through a divorce.
  • Creditors sue you for any late payments of debt.
  • Your home is under water, and in danger of foreclosure.
  • The only way to pay off debt is by using a credit card.
  • You use one credit card to pay off another.
  • You’re considering withdrawing money from a 401(k) account to pay bills.

Learn About the Different Chapters for Bankruptcy

Even though its general goal is to clear debt, not all bankruptcies mean the same thing. Today, there are six different types of bankruptcies:

Chapter 7: This is known as the most common type of bankruptcy. In this situation, the court sells all your assets so you can pay as much debt as possible. There is no amount of debt needed to qualify for chapter 7.

Chapter 13: This situation is for individuals where the court approves a repayment plan to your debt over three to five years. You keep your assets and your given time to get your mortgage up to date. The court decides on a monthly payment plan and issues a tight budget for you to follow.

Chapter 12: This type of resolution allows farmers and fishermen to get on a payment plan for their debts to avoid foreclosure.

Chapter 15: Courts handle international bankruptcy in Chapter 15.

Chapter 9: This debt resolution is a repayment plan for towns, cities, and schools to pay back their debt.

Chapter 11: Used mainly for businesses, chapter 11 creates a plan for running the company while paying off debt.

Trust Marc T. Valentine & Associates PC When Filing for Bankruptcy

Somerset, PA residents, trust Marc T. Valentine & Associates PC for all their bankruptcy needs. Our skilled attorneys will help you navigate the bankruptcy process in the best way possible. We always have our Somerset, PA, clients’ best interests at heart, and strive to serve them well in every case.

Clients in and around Somerset, PA, trust our timeliness and professionalism. At Marc T. Valentine & Associates PC, we believe each case is different and unique. Our attorneys always have your best interest at heart and always consider your situation. Contact the experienced attorneys at Marc T. Valentine & Associates PC today to learn more about our bankruptcy law services.

For more information about filing for bankruptcy, call Marc T. Valentine & Associates PC at (814) 701-2835. Clients can also email our attorneys at any time. We pride ourselves on providing prompt and professional service to clients in and around Somerset, PA. Reach out to us today to learn more about filing for bankruptcy.