Filing Bankruptcy with Joint Debt

Filing Bankruptcy with Joint Debt

Filing bankruptcy can be complicated. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can help you through the process, especially if you have any special or extraordinary circumstances. One of the circumstances that can complicate your bankruptcy is joint debt.

Joint debt is debt that involves you and at least one other person.  Often times, this other person is a spouse or business partner. When you have joint debt, all parties share the same legal responsibility for it. Joint debt most often occurs on large ticket items such as a home, real estate, business, or vehicle.

If you have any joint debt, it is important to disclose this to your bankruptcy lawyer. At the end of the day, if you file bankruptcy, the individuals you hold the joint debt with will become responsible for paying it back. In otherwards, while your bankruptcy attorney may list the debt in your filing, only you will be absolved from paying it back. This is another reason why speaking with a bankruptcy attorney is so important, as they can advise you on the options you have given your specific joint debt situation.

When it comes to filing bankruptcy, Charleston residents have trusted the Drose Law Firm for more than three decades. Our bankruptcy attorney and staff ease the stress and red tape associated with filing either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, helping you establish a clean slate and make a new start.  Not all bankruptcy lawyers understand the complexity of the laws associated with filing bankruptcy in South Carolina. Our bankruptcy lawyer is thorough and is always looking out for the best interests of our clients. Give Drose Law Firm a call to schedule your appointment today.

How Can Filing Bankruptcy Help Ease the Stress of Debt?

How Can Filing Bankruptcy Help Ease the Stress of Debt?

The thought of filing bankruptcy can be intimidating.  Our bankruptcy attorney has been working with clients to help them resolve debt issues for more than three decades.  We not only know the physical process of filing bankruptcy; we also understand the emotions that can occur as a result.  We sometimes meet with clients who are so overwhelmed, they feel there is no way out.  They often ask us if filing bankruptcy will really ease their stress.  While we cannot wave a magic want to make your stress go away, our bankruptcy lawyer can say with quite certainty that many clients report feeling much less stress after filing bankruptcy.

We are continuing our series of articles discussing some ways filing bankruptcy can ease the stress of being in debt.  Our previous article covered the fact that once your bankruptcy attorney files for you, an “automatic stay” takes effect and creditors will be required to stop contacting you. We also discussed the ways in which different types of bankruptcy can resolve debt issues. Today, we will look at two more ways filing bankruptcy can reduce stress of debt.

Prevents Foreclosure

Filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy can help prevent your home from going into foreclosure.  This is because when your bankruptcy attorney files Chapter 13 on your behalf, you are essentially asking for the ability to re-organize your debt, allowing you to catch up on your mortgage and/or finance your past due payments in accordance with the payment plan that has been established as part of your Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Retain Assets

Filing bankruptcy can help protect your personal assets that you already own (i.e., jewelry, clothing, furniture, etc.) as well as help you retain some that you don’t.  For instance, if you have a car loan and are behind on payments, you may be able to keep the vehicle under your bankruptcy financial restructuring plan.  

When in need of an experienced lawyer to help them file bankruptcy, Charleston residents and those in surrounding areas trust the Drose Law Firm.  Give us a call to meet with our bankruptcy lawyer today.

Case Study

Nancy P. – Case Study

Nancy P. survived the loss of a career and a bankruptcy. Now she has some words of advice for those going through the same things.

The economy was still crashing in 2010 when Nancy came to the realization that what she thought were sound business decisions turned into a series of massive mistakes and unfortunate timing. She couldn’t hold on to her restaurant and her three rental houses any longer. Her employees were out of work and she couldn’t pay her vendors.

“I felt so terrible about myself because I couldn’t fix it. It was an avalanche and I couldn’t do anything to stop it,” she wrote in an email to TFS. “Everyone knew I had to close my restaurant and what was once a dream turned into a total nightmare.”

It wasn’t until late January of 2015 that Nancy and her husband filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

While at the time her personal bankruptcy felt like it was an “epic failure” and taking a handout she didn’t deserve, in retrospect Nancy said she should have filed sooner. It ended up being the best thing to do for herself, her family and her future.

She signed up with www.tfsbillpay.com for monthly payments in July of 2017. It wasn’t all smooth sailing. Early in the process, Nancy had a couple of failed payments but still persevered and made “catch up” payments. In all, she made 17 transactions totaling more than $10,000 through TFS.

“Money was tight but eventually I found the reward in making those payments,” she said “It was what I could do to get to the other side of this. It was a form of redemption.”

Now free from bankruptcy, Nancy feels like she was given a second chance.

Her credit is good, she is buying a house and she is even considering a new business opportunity – something she never expected to do.

“You will get out of this, too. Don’t beat yourself up,” Nancy said. “You will learn so much through this process and you will come out of it better and stronger.”

And, she has advice for others as they navigate through bankruptcy.

“Managing your mental state is probably one of the most important things you can do to get through bankruptcy,” Nancy wrote.

Here are Nancy’s best tips for going through a bankruptcy:

  1. You are not a failure if you file for bankruptcy. 
  2. Get a good bankruptcy attorney.
  3. Don’t wait too long to file. 
  4. Remember, it will eventually end. 
  5. Whether you are required to pay anything back or not, this is your chance to have a new life. It is a massive gift so just accept it graciously and get on with your life. 
  6. Be kind to yourself as you go through this. You are making the right decision for you and your future. 
  7. The world, your creditors and the government are not “out to get you.” Bankruptcy is your chance for a clean slate. 
  8. If you are a small business owner, get an accountant who can do your books and even better if they are savvy on market trends. Pay attention to the economy. 
  9. Learn about finances during bankruptcy. Buy books, take online courses or watch YouTube.  There are some excellent free resources online to help you manage your money. Your bank, investment firms and community centers also offer classes. Create a new relationship with money. 
  10. Did I mention that bankruptcy is not failure? You are not a failure. 
I’m Overwhelmed with Debt. How Can Filing Bankruptcy Help?

I’m Overwhelmed with Debt.  How Can Filing Bankruptcy Help?

Our bankruptcy lawyer understands the burden people face when they have significant debt.  You feel like you are drowning and cannot see a way out. After spending more than three decades helping clients who are overwhelmed by debt, our bankruptcy attorney has seen it all and is extremely gratified when he can help clients realize that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Our next series of articles will cover some ways that filing bankruptcy can help you relieve stress and move on to the next stage of your life. Let’s get started:

Stop the Creditors from Calling

Collection agencies can be ruthless in their attempt to recover debt.  Not only are collection agents persistent in calling, but some can be down right intimidating.  The good news is once your bankruptcy lawyer files for you, an “automatic stay” takes affect and creditors will be required to stop contacting you.

Resolve Debt

Probably one of the most attractive features of filing bankruptcy is that it does resolve your existing debt issues.  Chapter 7 discharges most unsecured debt, while Chapter 13 re-organizes your debt and allows you to be placed on a plan toward paying it off completely. Either way, you are afforded a fresh start.

Our next article will outline more ways filing bankruptcy can help ease the feeling of being overwhelmed by your outstanding debt.  If the bills are piling up and the debtors keep calling, it may be time to discuss your options with our bankruptcy lawyer. At the Drose Law Firm, bankruptcy is all we handle, and we take into consideration both the legal and emotional aspects of each case. When filing bankruptcy, Charleston residents and those in surrounding areas know who to call. We invite you to connect with our bankruptcy attorney today!

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Bankruptcy and Divorce

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Two of the most stressful events that can occur in a person’s life are bankruptcy and divorce.  Each is difficult can be very emotional. If you are considering filing both bankruptcy and divorce, then you should retain an experienced divorce attorney and a bankruptcy lawyer to handle your cases. A bankruptcy attorney can give you information to help you make informed decisions in regard to filing bankruptcy, including:

  • Helping determine what type of bankruptcy to file, Chapter 7 or Chapter 13.
  • Outlining the tax implications involved with filing for both bankruptcy and divorce.
  • Assisting you with the decision of when it would be most beneficial to file bankruptcy (before or after divorce.)
  • Discussing what items you qualify to keep if you file for bankruptcy.

Once the above decisions have been made, your bankruptcy attorney can then help you fully prepare for the bankruptcy process. If it is determined that it is best to file bankruptcy before your divorce, then your bankruptcy lawyer will begin working on your filing right away. If you plan to file after divorce, then it is important to keep your bankruptcy lawyer apprised of when the divorce is scheduled to occur and advised of any changes in your situation or status.

Drose Law Firm has more than 30 years of experience in the practice of bankruptcy. Charleston residents and those in surrounding areas trust us because of the attention to detail and personalized care we put into each case we handle.  If you need a bankruptcy attorney, we can help. Give us a call to schedule a consultation today.

Why Should I Hire a Bankruptcy Attorney

Why Should I Hire a Bankruptcy Attorney?

We are continuing our series of articles highlighting some of the reasons to consider hiring a qualified bankruptcy lawyer. Charleston has many attorneys, but it is important to understand that not all are familiar with filing bankruptcy. Just as you probably would not hire an estate planning attorney to handle your divorce, it is advisable that when filing bankruptcy, you consider hiring a bankruptcy attorney who is familiar with the process. Our previous article discussed how a bankruptcy lawyer understands what you can and cannot do when it comes to filing bankruptcy. We also covered how a bankruptcy lawyer can help you determine which type of bankruptcy is best for you.  Let’s look at two more reasons why you should consider engaging a bankruptcy attorney.

A Bankruptcy Lawyer Will Handle All the Paperwork

There is a lot of paperwork associated with filing Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. A bankruptcy lawyer is familiar with the paperwork and knows what information is needed to submit a successful filing.  A qualified bankruptcy attorney also stays on top of the latest requirements and any changes to the law that may affect your filing.

A Bankruptcy Attorney Will Represent You in Court

A qualified bankruptcy lawyer is familiar with the requirements of the court, including important deadlines that must be met. Having a bankruptcy attorney represent you in court takes these burdens from you so you are better able to focus on making a fresh new start.

Bottom line, engaging a qualified bankruptcy lawyer can save you time, spare you from a lot of headaches and red tape, and significantly increase your chances of a successful filing.  When it comes to bankruptcy, Charleston residents and individuals throughout South Carolina have trusted Drose Law Firm for more than three decades. Give us a call to speak with our bankruptcy attorney today.

Do I Need To Hire A Bankruptcy Attorney?

Do I Need To Hire A Bankruptcy Attorney?

One question people often have when they are facing bankruptcy is if they need to hire a bankruptcy lawyer.  Our next series of articles will address this question and offer a brief overview outlining some of the advantages of hiring a bankruptcy attorney.

A Bankruptcy Attorney Understands What You Can And Cannot Do

If filing bankruptcy was a simple process, then bankruptcy attorneys would not exist.  The truth is there are court requirements, deadlines, and legal requirements that need to be addressed.  Additionally, a qualified bankruptcy lawyer will know what debts can be included in your filing and which ones are exempt.  Filing bankruptcy without a qualified and experienced bankruptcy attorney is a very time-consuming process that can result in both legal and financial consequences if not done properly.

A Bankruptcy Lawyer Can Help Determine Which Type Of Bankruptcy Is Best For You

There are two different types of bankruptcy filings to consider. Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharges qualified debt, which eliminates the need to pay back certain types of unsecured debt. Chapter 13 bankruptcy re-organizes your debt and affords you a timeframe (usually three to five years) to re-pay your debt. Every case is different. Experienced bankruptcy lawyers know how to determine which type of bankruptcy is right for each situation.

Our next article will cover more reasons why hiring a bankruptcy lawyer is a good idea.

Remember, not every attorney has experience with bankruptcy. Charleston residents have trusted the Drose Law Firm with their bankruptcy filings for more than 30 years. If you are struggling with debt and would like to know your options, our bankruptcy attorney is here for you. Give us a call to schedule your consultation today.

What Can I Expect After Filing Bankruptcy?

What Can I Expect After Filing Bankruptcy?

Some people are apprehensive about filing bankruptcy because they do not know what to expect. There is little worse than hiring a bankruptcy lawyer that leaves you in the dark. As an experienced bankruptcy attorney, I take time to educate my clients on the process of filing bankruptcy. Charleston residents have come to trust me, which is why I am one of the most respected bankruptcy attorneys in the Lowcountry. Our next series of articles will discuss what you can expect to happen after you file Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

Automatic Stay

Once your bankruptcy attorney has filed Chapter 7, an automatic stay will go into effect.  This essentially keeps creditors from contacting you, garnishing your wages or bank accounts, or taking any legal action against you. Be sure to inform your bankruptcy lawyer if you receive harassing calls or correspondence from your creditors after the automatic stay goes into effect.

Trustee

A trustee will be assigned to you.  Your trustee will review your filings and be present along with your bankruptcy attorney during your creditor meeting.

Reaffirmation Agreements

Your creditors may choose to send you a reaffirmation agreement to not have their debt discharged. If you receive one of these give it to your bankruptcy attorney to review before signing.

Our next article will cover more of what you can expect to happen after your bankruptcy lawyer files Chapter 7.

The Drose Law firm has more than 30 years of experience handling bankruptcy.  Charleston bankruptcy lawyers are not all equal and many also practice other types of law.  Our bankruptcy attorney only handles bankruptcy and creditor debtor law. If you’ve tried everything else or are ready to consider bankruptcy, we will be here for you. Give us a call to schedule a consultation today. 

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Do These Things if You Are Considering Filing Bankruptcy

bankruptcy attorneys

Considering bankruptcy?  If so, there are some things that bankruptcy attorneys advise that you do and don’t do before filing.  Let’s take a look:

Make a List of Your Assets

Making a list of your assets is a must.  If you wish to get a head start, you can begin making your list before meeting with a bankruptcy lawyer.  One of the first things your bankruptcy attorney will do is ask you to write down everything you have and own.  It is important to be completely honest and not try to hide assets or give them to a friend or family member to “hold.”  Your bankruptcy lawyer needs to know and see everything.

Don’t Run Up Additional Debt

Just because you are considering bankruptcy does not mean you should run up additional debt.  There can be consequences to doing this so be sure to consult your bankruptcy attorney before making any large purchases.

Keep Your Retirement Funds Where They Are

Bankruptcy attorneys advise against draining your retirement accounts. Leave everything where it is until you meet with your bankruptcy lawyer. Some or all of your retirement accounts may be exempt from creditors.

The Drose Law Firm has more than three decades of experience helping individuals file bankruptcy.  Charleston residents trust our bankruptcy attorney because of his personalized approach to help them “reset” and get back on track.  Remember, not all bankruptcy lawyers are alike.  You want to hire a bankruptcy attorney who is qualified and has a comprehensive understanding of bankruptcy laws.  At the Drose Law Firm, bankruptcy is all we do.  If you are considering filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, we can help. Give us a call to learn more today.

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Will I Lose My Home If I File Bankruptcy?

bankruptcy lawyers

Probably one of the most common questions bankruptcy lawyers are asked by clients is if they will lose their home when they file bankruptcy. While each individual circumstance is different, in most cases, you will not lose your home. However, you will still be required to make your mortgage payments if you wish to keep your home.  Here are some additional factors to consider: 

  • Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a restructuring of debt.  If you are facing foreclosure and wish to keep your home, your bankruptcy attorney may propose a re-payment plan that covers catching up on delinquent mortgage payments.
  • You are allowed to exempt some of the equity of your home from bankruptcy. Your bankruptcy lawyer can discuss how this may work in your case.
  • Depending on your circumstances, Chapter 13 bankruptcy may allow you to eliminate a wholly unsecured second mortgage on your home. A wholly unsecured second mortgage is one where there is no equity in your home to attach. Again, your bankruptcy attorney will need to look closely at this to determine if your existing second mortgage qualifies.

When filing bankruptcy, Charleston area residents know they can trust the Drose Law Firm to find them the freedom and relief they need. While some bankruptcy lawyers take a “cookie cutter” approach, our bankruptcy attorneys personalize our services and are passionate about providing qualified, experienced advice to the clients we serve.  If you are considering filing bankruptcy in Charleston or surrounding areas, we’re here to help.  Give Drose Law Firm a call today!