Job Loss and Bankruptcy
Tampa Bay Bankruptcy and Debt Relief Attorney
Losing your job can be devastating, especially in today's economic climate. Not only is the job market in most fields saturated with applicants, businesses will themselves be recovering from 2020 losses for years to come.
As anyone who has spent an amount of time being unemployed can tell you, budgeting your expenses can be next to impossible when there's no paycheck coming in. A GOBankingRates study from 2019 found that 69% of Americans had less than $1000 in their emergency savings account, barely enough to pay the average monthly rent let alone cover expenses while looking for a job. That means that while you're looking for work, credit card bills, medical bills, car payments, school loans, and child support payments could all be sliding into default.
The good news is, filing personal bankruptcy can give you options. Specifically, filing Chapter 7 might be just the help you need.
Declaring Bankruptcy Through Chapter 7
Chapter 7 is one of the most common forms of individual bankruptcy. The US Courts provide a handy guide to Chapter 7 filing here. Essentially, Chapter 7 involves a collection, assessment, and then liquidation of your non-exempt assets to pay off your creditors. Unsecured debts you have, such as credit cards, medical bills, and utilities, will be wiped out completely. You can also choose to give up your home or car if you can no longer afford them. It's a great way to get a completely fresh start.
A good Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyer may tell you to wait at least six months after losing your job before you apply for bankruptcy. That's because qualifying for a Chapter 7 filing is dependent on what's called a Means Test. The Means Test looks at your last six months of income. If your income is below the state median for an average household, you have a better chance of qualifying.
Should I File Chapter 7?
If you're currently unemployed and thinking about filing for personal bankruptcy, one of your first steps is to find a great bankruptcy lawyer. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney has experience with helping people just like you and can give you better bankruptcy advice than the internet can. They will ask you to think about your future options. For instance, are you probably going to be accruing more debt while you look for work? You may want to wait to file, to help discharge more of it. Once you find work, will you qualify for Chapter 7? If not, it might be better to file now while you're out of work and can pass the Means Test.
How Do I Find an Affordable Bankruptcy Lawyer Near Me?
At the Coleman Law Group, we specialize in helping people get their second chance through bankruptcy. Our lawyers come to you with years of experience, extensive legal knowledge, and a passion for getting people out from under crushing debt. Contact us today to set up your free bankruptcy consultation and see how we can help change your life.
St. Petersburg and Tampa: 727.214.0400.
You also can visit our website at colemanlawgroup.com