Overwhelming debt doesn’t just happen overnight. The majority of the American public live from paycheck to paycheck. It only takes one accident or illness to put you behind in your debts. Once you are behind it is possible that you may never catch up. This does not make you a bad person, just one that is in need of rescue. That help can come in the form of a bankruptcy. If you are like most people you have no idea how to do this and what is involved.
Filing bankruptcy is done through the court system. It is possible for you to do this on your own, but not very advisable. If you decide to do this on your own, you need to research this process. There are do-it-yourself kits on the Internet and companies that offer this service. You will need lots of patience to attempt this and hope you don’t make mistakes.
Your first decision in getting ready to file bankruptcy is what type you want to file. Chapter 7 bankruptcy involves selling your assets and dividing the proceeds among your creditor. Chapter 13 is working with your creditors to stop their interest and accepting smaller payments over a period of time. This is not a decision that you want to rush into. You can find information on the Internet, in your local library or by consulting with other people.
If you don’t think you can handle doing it yourself, your safest bet is to contact a lawyer who deals with bankruptcy. They will have the forms that need to be completed and will know how to handle these issues in the court system. Even with an attorney, a bankruptcy will take time but when it is completed you know that everything was done, as it should have been. Bankruptcy may not be what you want to do but if you have to, then do it correctly.
The primary purpose of bankruptcy is to allow a debtor a fresh start of his or her financial life again. Recently, the law has changed. There are further evaluations of a person’s financial state, and more requirements for obtaining the debt discharge. Some states have varying exemptions for bankruptcy. The debtor should closely examine the exemptions in their state of residence. In addition, the debtor’s attorney will go over the entire bankruptcy process and any specific state exemptions as well.
The State of California has two different sets of exemptions regarding the bankruptcy process. The debtor must choose one set of exemptions, and the qualified bankruptcy attorney will be able to assist in the decision of the right set of California exemptions for the debtor.
Both sets of California bankruptcy exemptions are separated into asset, homestead, personal property, insurance, pensions, public benefits, tools of the trade, wages, and miscellaneous categories. The debtor should become intimately familiar with all of these categories of California bankruptcy exemptions. The debtor’s attorney will be able to determine whether which set is the correct one to employ for the bankruptcy process.
Most of the California bankruptcy exemptions are easy to understand and can be found through online sources and a qualified bankruptcy attorney will be able to assist the debtor. The tools of the trade category refers to tools, implements, materials, instruments, uniforms, books, furnishings, equipment, vessel, motor vehicles from $5,000 to $10,000 total if used by both spouses in same occupation. The motor vehicle cannot be claimed if under tools of trade exemption.