If you are facing a large amount of debt, you are probably in the process of researching different debt relief options. One option to reduce or eliminate debt is declaring bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy may help you and your family get back on your feet financially.
But, how can you qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy? Do you need to hire a Tucson Chapter 7 debt relief attorney to successfully file? Let’s take a look at these answers and more below.
What Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?
When you file for Chapter 7 debt relief, you are seeking to discharge unsecured debts. Not all debts are dischargeable. For example, Chapter 7 will not be able to discharge:
- Most income tax debts, or other government loans and fines
- Student loans
- Criminal restitution
- Alimony and child support
- Most secured liens
- Debt related to fraudulent activity
- Damages created by a DUI
However, there are certainly many other areas where people fall into debt. These areas may be discharged by filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy:
- Money owed to a landlord or property manager due to a broken lease
- Owed utility bills
- Credit card debt
- Payday or title loans
- Medical bills
- Personal or car loans
If these areas are where your debts lie, no doubt it is tantalizing to imagine what life might be like without harassing collection calls, rude mailings, and that big red number at the end of the month.
So- Do You Qualify for Chapter 7 Debt Relief in Tucson?
Preparing to file for bankruptcy can feel overwhelming. However, qualifying for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection is easier than you might think.
Chapter 7 Qualification #1
The first qualification considers your family’s total income level. The bankruptcy court will look at your income and compare it to the median income for an Arizona family of the same size. For example, a family of three in our state has a median income of $75,560. If you are a family of three, you will need to make less than this figure. Here are some other benchmarks along this first qualification:
- The median income for one person in Arizona is $55,839.
- The median income for a family of two in Arizona is $69,975.
- The median income for a family of four in Arizona is $85,714.
Chapter 7 Qualification #2
Even if you make more than the figures above, you might be able to qualify for debt relief in another way. This involves the means test. The means test dissects your paycheck deductions and typical day-to-day expenses.
Note: The amount of day-to-day expenses determined appropriate by the court may be far less than what you actually spend.
Your Chapter 7 debt relief attorney will help you through the rest. The test takes these costs out of your total income. The leftover figure, compared to the amount of debt you owe each month, will determine if you have sufficient disposable income to cover your debt payments. In other words, if your debts are more than this number, the courts will determine whether or not you have disposable income, and you may qualify for Chapter 7.
Chapter 7 Qualification #3
You earn less than the median income for a family in Arizona meaning you pass Qualification #1, so you can file Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Arizona, right? Or, you passed the Means Test, so you can file Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Arizona, right? Not so fast, unfortunately, the Median Income Test and the Means Test both look at historical information, you also need to show that you cannot afford to repay your creditors based on your income looking forward.
Of course, each aspect of this process is heavily nuanced. So, to know exactly what you qualify for, work with an attorney from Lerner and Rowe Law Group.
How a Tucson Chapter 7 Debt Relief Attorney Can Help
When filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in Tucson, it is of utmost importance that you work with a knowledgeable Arizona bankruptcy lawyer on your side. In fact, the slightest mistake within Chapter 7 paperwork can mean the difference between receiving debt relief and not receiving debt relief.
A Tucson Chapter 7 debt relief attorney will walk you through the process so that you don’t miss any necessary documentation. They will also provide answers to all of your questions related to the paperwork. Then, they will file your Chapter 7 bankruptcy case for you. Lastly, they may attend any hearings that may come up throughout the process, and help you fight any disputes.
Work with Lerner & Rowe Law Group for Low-Cost Debt Relief
At Lerner and Rowe Law Group, we offer low-cost debt relief with $0 down bankruptcy. And, when you work with Lerner and Rowe Law Group, you unlock award-winning representation that includes 70 years of combined experience. Reach out via LiveChat or fill out our handy FREE online form. And as you know: One Call…Does It All®! So, dial 602-667-7777 today for your free case evaluation and consultation.