Eligibility Requirements

Bankruptcy is a word that nobody really wants to even think about. It is a mysterious process for the vast majority of U.S. residents. With this lack of understanding, just like most other things in life, brings a sense of anxiety and fear that has the potential to make a difficult situation even worse.

Ignorance is not bliss when it comes to your financial well-being. No matter how scary it is to look objectively at your money issues, the earlier you come to terms with the problems that you are facing, the better equipped you are at fixing the situation and getting your life back on track.

The most productive way of doing so is working with a qualified bankruptcy attorney who can effectively advise you on whether you are eligible for bankruptcy, and if so, immediately guide you through this stressful process.

Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky Bankruptcy Eligibility Requirements

Taking the steps necessary to remedy your financial woes should be a primary concern if you are accumulating an unsustainable level of debt. The first and foremost action you should take if this becomes an issue is to work with a capable bankruptcy lawyer who can let you know if you are eligible for bankruptcy. A lawyer will be able to assess your financial situation and quickly come to a conclusion on what type of bankruptcy would be best for you.

With over 25 years of experience helping Midwesterners get out of debt, Eric Steiden is a proven and respected bankruptcy attorney who is committed to doing everything in his power to get you back on track financially. His dedication to honesty and integrity throughout the years has given him a reputation of an attorney with values that never waver. The firm also takes pride in a quick response time, allowing you to get started fixing your legal financial problems immediately.

To schedule a free consultation to go over whether you are eligible for bankruptcy, along with what path you should take, call Steiden Law Offices at (888) 877-3328 or send an online message today. Eric Steiden proudly represents individuals throughout Northern Kentucky and Southern Ohio, including Hamilton County, Kenton County, and Boone County.

Steiden Law Offices has two Kentucky locations, one in Florence and the other in Covington. In addition to serving the residents of these two great cities, Eric and staff also proudly represent those dealing with debt issues in Erlanger, Edgewood, Elsmere, Villa Hills, Fort Mitchell, Taylor Mill, Fort Wright, Ludlow and many more.

The law firm maintains two locations in Cincinnati. Steiden Law Offices can be counted on to provide a level of legal counsel that is commensurate with his pride for the Midwest, which actually means a great deal. For nearly two decades, Eric has represented individuals and families throughout Hamilton County, and he will continue to do so for as long as he is able.

Eligibility Requirements Information Center

What Bankruptcy Can Do

Bankruptcy can have a profound effect on your future well-being. It has many potential advantages, such as:

  • Eliminating the legal obligation to pay most or all of your debts
  • Stopping the foreclosure of your home and allowing you to catch up on missed payments
  • Stopping wage garnishments
  • Stopping debt collection harassment
  • Stopping the repossession of a car or other property, or, in some situations, force the creditor to return property even after it has been repossessed
  • Restoring or preventing the termination of utility service for nonpayment of prior bills
  • Get your driver's license back if it has been suspended because you didn't pay court-ordered damages for a driving accident (unless you were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol)

What Bankruptcy Cannot Do

Although a huge benefit for many, there are particular situations in which a bankruptcy will not be able to help you. Bankruptcy cannot do the following:

  • Eliminate certain rights of secured creditors. This may include car loans and home mortgages. An individual can force secured creditors to take payments over time, but generally, they cannot keep the collateral unless they continue to pay the debt.
  • Discharge debts that develop after filing for bankruptcy.
  • Discharge certain types of debts, such as child support, alimony, certain debts related to divorce, student loans, restitution, criminal fines, and most taxes.
  • Eliminate the obligation of a cosigner on your loan (in most cases).

Am I Eligible for Bankruptcy?

In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, there are multiple areas of criteria that must be met. The first relates to income and how much you actually make. In order to file, you must either be below a certain amount or, if you are, you are required to take a means test. A means test measures your current income against the state average, which categorizes households according to size.

In addition, to be eligible, you must not have received a bankruptcy discharge within the last eight years. This is in addition to not having a previous bankruptcy dismissed within the last 180 days.

Although obvious, it must be stated that you will not be eligible for bankruptcy if you, in any way, defrauded your creditors. This includes unloading assets on friends, running up debts for luxury items when you were already out of money, concealing property from your spouse in a divorce proceeding, or lying about your income or debts on a credit application.

In order to file for Chapter 13, you must meet certain strict debt limits. Anyone with debts over the amounts listed will not be eligible for Chapter 13 and must file for Chapter 7 instead. The restrictions on debt are divided into secured and unsecured debt as follows:

  • No more than $336,900 in unsecured debts
  • No more than $1,010,650 in secured debts
  • No partnerships or corporations are eligible for Chapter 13.

Means Testing

A means test is a determination of whether an individual or family is eligible for help from the government. In bankruptcy, this generally refers to the eligibility relief for debtors who have sufficient financial means to pay a portion of their debts. Thus, the means test is basically a formula designed to keep filers with higher incomes from filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. (These filers may use Chapter 13 bankruptcy to repay a portion of their debts, but may not use Chapter 7 to wipe out their debts altogether.)

Bankruptcy Eligibility Related Resources

US Courts – Chapter 7 Bankruptcy – This link connects you to the United States government's website detailing the basics of a Chapter 7 filing. It offers information on eligibility, relevant documents, discharges, and hearings.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Code – United States – This is the primary website for the United States Courts information on Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. It includes information such as the advantages of Ch. 13, eligibility requirements, discharge, and the process itself.

U.S. Trustee Program – This part of the Department of Justice is responsible for overseeing the administration of bankruptcy cases and private trustees. The website has information about the program and the federal bankruptcy system in general.

Eligibility for Borrowers in Bankruptcy – This link is to a .pdf document developed by USAFunds that goes over the requirements for an individual or family that files for bankruptcy both before and after filing for bankruptcy. It also discusses what lending companies and the particular schools must do when presented with this situation.

Steiden Law Offices | Florence Bankruptcy Eligibility Requirements

If you are currently considering filing for bankruptcy, or are simply looking at high levels of debt or harassing creditors, it is important that you speak with a bankruptcy attorney first. A capable attorney will be able to let you know the best course of action for your personal situation in an efficient manner.

They will also be able to guide you through a bankruptcy filing while taking care of the necessary documentation and help you make certain that everything is accounted for so that you can move past this dark period in your life. Eric Steiden has a strict adherence to providing his clients with the most straightforward and transparent information regarding the bankruptcy process. He is committed to the clients he serves and considers honor and reliability to have a large influence on his decision-making process.

To schedule a free consultation and determine your eligibility for bankruptcy, call (888) 877-3328 or send an online message today. Eric Steiden proudly represents individuals throughout Southern Ohio and Northern Kentucky, including Hamilton County, Boone County, and Kenton County.

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