Filing for Bankruptcy - Look Before You Leap

In the event of unpaid debts, it is advised to call or e-mail law firms, before attempting any desperate measures such as raiding one's retirement plan, transferring property, or transferring credit card balances. One must consult bankruptcy lawyers, before making such hasty decisions.

Make sure that experienced bankruptcy lawyers are contacted if one has been sued or if there remains a pending judgment. Once a judgment has been issued, the underlying debt becomes a secured debt and can be paid off by seizing bank accounts, garnishing wages or seizing property.

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Note that bankruptcy is not a good solution if one is elderly and/or has no assets that a creditor could garnish (social security wages, as an example) or seize. Even if one has non-exempt assets and debts such as student loans, an Atlanta bankruptcy attorney always advises not to file for bankruptcy.

It should be known that bankruptcy for individuals if of two types- Chapter 13 and Chapter 7. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy is also referred to as a "wage earner's plan." In this scenario, debts can be paid off over a period of 3 to 5 years by individuals without paying any interest on payment towards debt. One cannot be sued while using the Chapter 13 plan and even does not need to sell its properties or assets to make payments. However, Chapter 7 is a liquidation bankruptcy, which helps the individuals to pay their unsecured debt in an efficient manner. Homes are seized only when it is currently not on mortgage payment, and even then one can work with Atlanta bankruptcy attorney to modify these payments outside of the bankruptcy case.

Filing for bankruptcy is not the only mode of making debt payments. It is important to decide which mode to select, based on one's ability to pay. One of them is loan modification. The bankruptcy lawyers can help negotiate with the lenders, to lower car and home payments, and also prevent foreclosure. Another mode that can be considered is debt settlement. When there is simply not enough balance on one's credit cards or medical bills to cover the cost of bankruptcy, debt settlement is an alternative. However, it is important to be careful of companies that claim to take certain items off one's credit report, as they are scams. Sometimes, debt settlement ends up being ineffective, as one ends up paying a part of the lowered payment to the debt settlement company every month, for "negotiating."

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