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Bankruptcy News & Recent Cases

Benefiting from Bankruptcy in Windom, MN, and Recovering Your Credit After Filing

October 1st, 2018 · No Comments

Bankruptcy in the U.S. is a system designed to pull individuals and businesses out of severe debt while resolving those debts with creditors as best as possible. In this way bankruptcy is a highly effective process for recovering from severely crippling debt and getting a fresh start financially. However, filing for bankruptcy does have its side effects despite the many advantages it provides. If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy in Windom, MN, Behm Law Group, Ltd. can help you prepare a strong case, successfully petition for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, and fully understand the results that bankruptcy brings.

 

When you choose to partner with Behm Law Group, Ltd. for your bankruptcy case, you’re choosing highly-skilled, experienced professionals who understand your need for guidance and counsel before, during, and after you file. While bankruptcy offers a viable way to work through financial difficulties, there are some negative consequences as well, and we want our clients to be aware of all the effects a bankruptcy filing can have.

 

The primary problem those who file for bankruptcy face after their case is completed is the effect it has on their credit. There’s often a certain amount of damage to your credit when you file, and although you emerge from bankruptcy relieved from debt, it may take a while to rebuild your credit.

 

Recovering your credit after you file may seem like a daunting task, but the truth is it’s entirely possible for everyone who files for bankruptcy to fix their score over time. With the advice of our attorneys you can regain control over your credit and finances even after we work with you through a bankruptcy. Rebuilding your credit simply takes time and responsible practices including:

  1. Make all your payments on time and keep clear communication with your creditors if you’re unable to meet a payment. Most lenders are understanding of extenuating circumstances and are willing to make exceptions.
  2. Keep your accounts open despite the impulse to close them all at once. Instead, work on slowly closing the accounts you no longer want over an extended period of time.
  3. Check your credit often and keep an eye out for errors you may be able to dispute.
  4. Create and follow a budget with a savings plan integrated into your monthly income and spending patterns. Our attorneys can help you build a post- bankruptcy budget that’s effective, reasonable, and long-term.
  5. Hang on to all of your bankruptcy paperwork and keep it filed in an organized, logical place. You may need this paperwork down the road for loans or mortgage applications.

 

Above all, it’s important to remind yourself that your credit will improve over time. To learn more about filing for bankruptcy in Windom, MN, and what to do after you file, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 today.

→ No Comments Tags: Bankruptcy · Bankruptcy Advice · Bankruptcy Information · Minnesota Bankruptcy ·

Who, What, When, and Why: Corporations, LLCs, and Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Luverne, MN

September 28th, 2018 · No Comments

Bankruptcy is a form of debt relief available to U.S. individuals and businesses alike, and while there are several versions of reorganization or liquidation bankruptcy, the overall goal of giving debtors a viable opportunity for financial recovery remains the same. If your limited liability company (LLC) or corporation chooses to file for bankruptcy, you can take advantage of the benefits a reorganization case provides through Chapters 11, 12, and 13, or you can liquidate your assets and receive debt relief through Chapter 7. With the advice and guidance of Behm Law Group, Ltd., you can choose the right type of bankruptcy in Luverne, MN, for your business and file a successful case for long-term financial stability.

While reorganization bankruptcy is an effective option for high-income businesses dealing with equally high debts, the best choice for businesses struggling to stay above water may be a Chapter 7 liquidation case. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the most common format for individual bankruptcies, but because of the differences in how a case is handled for corporations and LLCs, this process can also be a viable option for companies going out of business.

 

Debt Discharge

For individual consumers, Chapter 7 bankruptcy works to liquidate non-exempt assets (properties including anything from homes and vehicles to jewelry and appliances the values of which are in excess of your applicable bankruptcy exemptions) and discharge many of their debts in return (including credit card debts, medical bills, mortgages, car loans, and more). In a Chapter 7 business case, the debts of the business are also discharged.  However, in a business Chapter 7, the business does not have the benefit of asserting bankruptcy exemptions to protect at least some assets.  Instead, the bankruptcy trustee will generally liquidate all business assets and use those funds to repay at least some dividend to creditors. When this process is accomplished, the business usually closes. Regardless of whether the business closes or stays in operation, its debts are discharged just as in an individual Chapter 7 and its creditors are unable to legally collect the discharged debts from the business.

 

Time and Place

An LLC or corporation might choose to file for Chapter 7 if they’re ready to close down and cut their losses. For example, if a technology company’s product becomes obsolete and they can’t alter their production to fit the changing market, the owners of that company can benefit from filing for Chapter 7. A company may also choose to file for Chapter 7 to stop creditor harassment and alleviate concerns of fraud that may lead to lawsuits.

On the other hand, it may not be time to file for liquidation bankruptcy if the majority of your business debts will become personal liabilities after filing—debts you’ll be responsible for even after your business is closed. The types of business debts that are considered personal liability after bankruptcy include trust fund taxes, alter ego claims, and fraud claims and debts of the business for which you may have signed personal guarantees.  Sometimes, one needs to file a business Chapter 7 bankruptcy and, thereafter, file an individual Chapter 7 bankruptcy to discharge debts of the business that one personally guaranteed.

f your corporation or LLC is failing to meet debt payments and gain steady revenue, Chapter 7 bankruptcy might be the right step to take. Contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 to start your case today and get the most out of filing for bankruptcy in Luverne, MN.

 

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First Three Critical Steps in Filing for Bankruptcy in Redwood Falls, MN

September 19th, 2018 · No Comments

Life is full of unexpected events. When it comes to debt and financial difficulties, it’s best to deal with those life events head on. You may have accumulated debts over the years or be struggling with sudden expenses, but whatever the reasons leading up to severe debt, you don’t have to face it alone. Getting rid of debt and finding a fresh start is always a possibility through filing for bankruptcy. With the expert support and advice of Behm Law Group, Ltd. attorneys, you can file a successful petition for bankruptcy in Redwood Falls, MN.

 

When the ball gets rolling in a bankruptcy case, things are quickly resolved. If you file for Chapter 7, your debts will be discharged and non-exempt assets liquidated. If you file for Chapter 13, your adjusted repayment plan will begin, and you can start making regular payments to a chapter 13 trustee fairly quickly. However, before you can reach that point in your bankruptcy case, you must perform a few crucial primary steps.

 

Filing for Bankruptcy- Starting Gates

 

  1. Gather your financial information: To put together a bankruptcy petition for either Chapter 13 or Chapter 7, you have to gather a comprehensive inventory of financial documents. This includes filling out the necessary bankruptcy forms, listing all debts, providing income information, listing your assets and properties, and describing your monthly expenses for household needs. Behm attorneys will provide you with direction on how to put together this information to begin the bankruptcy process.
  2. Attend credit counseling: Even if you’ve completed the first step and gathered all the necessary information, you’ll still be required to complete an online credit counseling course in order to file a bankruptcy petition. You must work with a United States Trustee-approved credit counseling agency and complete the credit counseling course within 180 days of the filing of your bankruptcy petition. Behm Law Group, Ltd. can provide direction to quality, affordable online credit counseling in your area.
  3. Attend your 341 hearing: The last step to getting your case completed and obtaining debt relief is to attend your meeting of creditors (341 hearing). This meeting occurs after you have finished your filing for bankruptcy. This is not a court hearing per se where you appear before a bankruptcy judge. Rather, it is an administrative hearing where you appear before a bankruptcy trustee.  The bankruptcy trustee is a court-appointed attorney assigned to monitor, supervise and review your bankruptcy case.  You must personally attend the 341 hearing and your creditors have a right to attend if they like.  It is up to the bankruptcy trustee to review your bankruptcy paperwork and ask you questions at the 341 hearing – questions you must answer under oath and subject to penalty of perjury – to ensure that your paperwork is accurate. Part of the purpose of the 341 hearing is to ensure you’re apprised of the consequences and seriousness of filing for bankruptcy and to discuss debt reaffirmation with your attorney. During this meeting, the trustee will also make sure you’re not abusing the process of bankruptcy.

 

After these steps are completed, the next part of filing for bankruptcy —which varies depending on the chapter you file for— is getting a discharge order from the bankruptcy court which discharges the vast majority of your debts.

 

To learn more about filing for bankruptcy in Redwood Falls, MN, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 today.

 

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Creditor vs. Debtor: Getting More Out of Your Case with a Bankruptcy Attorney in Mankato, MN

September 18th, 2018 · No Comments

Bankruptcy is designed to help individuals and businesses recover from debt and continue to participate in the global and national economy. While bankruptcy offers what’s essentially a government-sanctioned financial backup plan, it’s not a bailout to simply rid yourself of debts with no concern for your lenders. When you file for bankruptcy, the process will work to create a balanced outcome for you and your creditors. If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, do it with the help of a Behm Law Group, Ltd. bankruptcy attorney in Mankato, MN to get the most out of your case.

Bankruptcy is a fair system, balanced in regards to your creditors and yourself, and it allows you benefit greatly from the process with the right approach and with the help of a skilled bankruptcy attorney.

 

Chapter 7

 If you qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy by passing the Means Test, the vast majority of your debts will be discharged, except for student loans, child support and alimony and certain tax debts.  However, even student loans, child support and alimony and certain tax debts can be discharged in certain circumstances.  If the total value of your assets exceeds the amount you can protect/keep with your applicable bankruptcy exemptions, the excess, non-exempt value will be distributed among your creditors.

  • Good for you: In this process, you get the benefits of debt discharge. Most of your debts including credit card debt, medical bills, old utility bills, bad checks, overdraft fees from bank accounts, debts from foreclosures and repossessions of vehicles will be discharged and you won’t have to worry about those debts again
  • Good for your creditors: Your creditors benefit from the liquidation of your non-exempt assets, which gives them a return on their loans they may not have received if you did not file for bankruptcy. In most cases, however, people do not lose any assets and all they lose are their creditors/debts.
  • How to do better: With the help of a Behm bankruptcy attorney, you can pick your way through this nuanced process. Our bankruptcy attorneys can help you work through choosing exemptions, filing a joint case with your spouse, protecting your bank accounts, working around foreclosure, and more.

 

Chapter 13

This process of bankruptcy works to reorganize your debts into a new repayment plan that spans three to five years.

  • Good for you: This process structures the repayment plan around your current income and expenses, so you won’t struggle to meet payments. You’ll also only have to repay your unsecured creditors a portion of what you owe (0%-100%)
  • Good for your creditors: Your secured creditors generally get repaid in full but at a lower interest rate in this plan, and while your unsecured creditors only receive a portion, they’ll still see a return of what they’re owed
  • How to do better: When you work with a Behm Law Group, Ltd. attorney to structure a repayment plan proposal, you have a better chance of fair unsecured debt repayment, flexibility in your payment plan over the years, and protection from creditor harassment

If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, keep in mind that the process will maintain a balanced treatment for both you and your creditors. With the support and legal savvy of a Behm Law Group, Ltd. bankruptcy attorney in Mankato, MN, you can file a stronger, more successful case. Contact us at (507) 387-7200 to get started today.

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Most Recent Legal Changes that Affect How You File for Bankruptcy in Waseca, MN

September 17th, 2018 · No Comments

Over the past 50 years, bankruptcy law has seen changes that have affected how individual consumer and business cases are handled today. The most recent overhaul in bankruptcy law came in 2005 when the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act (BAPCPA) was enacted to prevent the possibility of filers taking advantage of the system and to protect creditors involved. The BAPCPA played a significant role in shaping what we know as the current bankruptcy process.

While large changes like the 2005 bankruptcy act don’t happen frequently, there are little changes that come every few years that affect the way the court may approach a case and the way individuals and businesses can file. If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy in Waseca, MN, Behm Law Group, Ltd. offers the guidance and legal support you need to navigate the nuanced court system.

Some of the most recent changes to bankruptcy law were put into effect on the first of December in 2017. These alterations are minor in the overall framework of bankruptcy law, but they may still affect how your case is handled from start to finish.

  1. Chapter 13 Repayment: One change to bankruptcy law was made to the structure of how you file a Chapter 13 repayment plan. This change dictates that filers must use federal forms for a repayment plan, or local forms that comply with the amended federal rules (Rule 3015). This provides greater efficiency for creditors to review the proposed plan and streamlines how the court organizes your case information.
  2. Time Restrictions: Deadlines for plan objections and case confirmation hearings have changed in regard to Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The court now requires a notice within 21 days to object to a Chapter 13 plan confirmation (for creditors). An objection cannot be filed later than seven days before the confirmation hearing unless the court allows for an extension.
  3. Claim Amounts: While the amounts of secured and priority loan claims may not have altered overall, the way the court determines the amounts of those loans has. The court can now decide the claim amount even after it has been filed with motions and/or objections. That determination is binding for a secured claim holder even with a contrasting proof of claim. This alteration forces creditors to examine the proposed Chapter 13 plan of the debtor before agreeing.
  4. Proof of Claim: Under the 2017 amendments, your creditors must prove their claim of debt to be repaid in any type of bankruptcy. This includes filing the necessary documents for proof of claim within 70 days of your bankruptcy filing date. These claims must also include attachments that prove loan ownership including mortgage deeds, car titles, and other paperwork proving your responsibility to pay a secured loan.

These minor details may not be the most exciting part of a bankruptcy process, but they are important to understand in order to file your case without error. Contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 to learn more about filing for bankruptcy in Waseca, MN.

 

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Using the Marital Adjustment to Qualify for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Jackson, MN

September 13th, 2018 · No Comments

Chapter 7 liquidation bankruptcy is the most common type of individual consumer bankruptcy in the US. The process of Chapter 7 works to liquidate a filer’s non-exempt bankruptcy estate property in return for the discharge of their debts. Not only is it an effective way to free yourself from credit card debts, medical bills, and more, Chapter 7 bankruptcy represents a government-sanctioned fresh start. If you’re struggling to meet debt payments, Behm Law Group, Ltd. offers the legal support and advice you need to file a successful case for bankruptcy in Jackson, MN.

 

Chapter 7 bankruptcy offers a direct path to debt relief, but it’s not a process available to everyone. To prevent bankruptcy abuse, every filer must pass the Means Test before they can qualify for Chapter 7.

 

The Means Test examines your finances to determine if your income and debts are at a level that will benefit from Chapter 7 bankruptcy while remaining fair to your creditors. If your income is lower than the Minnesota median for a similar household size, you qualify to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. You may also qualify if the Means Test shows your debts are higher than your income even if your income is greater than the state median income for a household of your size.

 

If you’re married, you may be able to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy using the marital adjustment deduction.

The Means Test looks at the household income to determine your eligibility, but if you choose to file for bankruptcy and your spouse doesn’t, you can deduct the expenses attributed solely to your spouse. By deducting these expenses, you can lower the income you list on your Means Test, making it possible to qualify for Chapter 7. It works like this:

 

  • Your spouse’s income would usually be listed with your own on the Means Test, but he or she doesn’t want to file for bankruptcy with you.
  • You choose to take away the expenses of your spouse using the marital adjustment deduction.
  • In doing this, you reduce those expenses from the full income of the household, lowering your overall income and making it more likely that you will qualify for Chapter 7.

 

Expenses that can be deducted from your income vary depending on your location and court approval, but most deductions will allow for:

 

  • Payroll including taxes, insurance, union dues, retirement, and other deductions
  • Alimony, child support, and other court-issued domestic support payments
  • Your spouse’s attorney fees
  • Payments on debts in your spouse’s name
  • Payments on 401(k) loans
  • Expenses on your spouse’s car
  • Cell phone expenses in your spouse’s name
  • Recreation expenses including vacations, hobbies, memberships, and other entertainment expenses
  • Property expenses for real estate in your spouse’s name

 

Overall, you can deduct a significant portion of your income through the marital adjustment deduction and possibly qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy even with a high income. To learn more about filing for bankruptcy in Jackson, MN, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. today at (507) 387-7200.

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Acquiring Business Credit During Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in St. Peter, MN

September 10th, 2018 · No Comments

If you own a business and are struggling to meet payments on anything ranging from rent to utilities, you may benefit from taking advantage of the government-regulated system of bankruptcy. While it might seem like a big step to take, bankruptcy is designed to help businesses of all sizes into a full financial recovery. In fact, if you file for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, your debts will be restructured into a manageable repayment plan for your business.

Not only is it possible to protect your business and the property involved when you choose to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may be able to continue expanding your business during the bankruptcy period. With the help of our attorneys at Behm Law Group, Ltd., you can keep your business afloat while you file for bankruptcy in St. Peter, MN.

 Filing for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 bankruptcy works to restructure your debts as a whole into a new repayment plan spanning a period of three to five years. Within this repayment plan your secured debts and priority debts must be repaid in full, but your unsecured debts will be restructured into the plan with only partial repayment required ranging from 0% to 100%.

 

Chapter 13 is a debt reorganization process available to both consumers and businesses, and while Chapter 11 is a similar reorganization process businesses can utilize, it is designed for very large businesses and is often impractical for individual consumers.  There are often greater benefits and more opportunities for full, long-lasting recovery when you choose Chapter 13 over 11.

 

One reason your business may thrive even through a repayment plan in Chapter 13 bankruptcy is because it’s possible to gain business credit, allowing for overall growth in your company.

 

Business Credit

 

Because even the most efficient businesses still incur debts through normal operations, especially when all disposable income in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy plan is used to repay unsecured creditors, you’re allowed to gain ordinary credit without needing approval from your trustee or authorization from the court. For example, if you own a bakery and need to buy a large inventory order of sugar and flour, you don’t need court approval to do so if you can pay for that shipment within 30-60 days.

 

However, if you gain credit outside the terms of ordinary business operations, you’ll need to receive court approval before making a purchase that’ll put your business in debt. In the example of the bakery, you’ll need court approval if you have to purchase a large appliance or vehicle necessary for normal business operations. To prove you can repay that item without it affecting your repayment plan, you have to:

  1. File a motion to authorize the purchase
  2. Explain to your trustee, creditors, and the court why that item is needed
  3. Demonstrate you can afford the item and still make payments on your plan

 

Gaining business credit during your repayment plan is an option that Chapter 13 bankruptcy often provides within reason and choosing this form of reorganization bankruptcy can allow your business to grow even through difficult times. To learn more about filing for a business bankruptcy in St. Peter, MN, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 today.

 

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Understanding When and Why You Can Be Forced into Involuntary Bankruptcy in Fairmont, MN

September 5th, 2018 · No Comments

If you’re struggling to make monthly debt payments on time or missing payments completely, you may be eligible to file for bankruptcy. However, there are many who consider bankruptcy to be a last-ditch effort to save their finances. Whether you’re ready to file for bankruptcy or want to try to work through your debts another way, the full bankruptcy process might still be in the cards. This is because it’s possible for your creditors to force you into an involuntary bankruptcy if your debts and properties fit certain criteria. If you’re pushed into an involuntary bankruptcy in Fairmont, MN, Behm Law Group, Ltd. can protect you and guide you throughout the process.

Bankruptcy law is designed to benefit both the consumer or business as well as the creditors involved in the highest capacity possible. You may not want to file for bankruptcy, but you might be forced to “choose” this process anyway if your creditors file an involuntary case against you.

 

Involuntary Bankruptcy

The U.S. bankruptcy code protects creditors against negligent debtors by allowing them to file involuntary cases against those debtors, pushing them to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy (Chapter 13 is not permitted in an involuntary case). When a debtor neglects their debts yet still maintains valuable assets, creditors can petition the courts to force that debtor into a liquidation bankruptcy process that’ll result in two things. First, creditors will gain some repayment from the liquidation of the debtor’s assets. Second, the debtor will receive discharges for the related debts. The majority of involuntary cases are filed against businesses rather than individuals, family farmers, or fishermen, but creditors can force individuals into bankruptcy if they owe significant debts and have adequate assets for creditors to benefit from in liquidation.

 

Rules

  1. One or more creditors must file a petition to set the ball rolling on an involuntary bankruptcy case.
  2. The debtor must respond to the petition within 20 days of receipt or the court will automatically force the debtor and creditors to start the involuntary bankruptcy process.
  3. If the debtor responds within 20 days, a hearing date will be established that’ll allow the debtor to defend themselves against the bankruptcy.
  4. If a debtor has more than 12 unsecured creditors, there must be a minimum of three creditors (with at least $15,775 owed to them in unsecured debt) participating in the petition for an involuntary bankruptcy.
  5. A single creditor can file an involuntary petition if the debtor owes them at least $15,775 and that debtor has under 12 unsecured creditors.
  6. Debts cannot be disputed or dependent on future legal decisions (e.g. lawsuit-related debts).
  7. Involuntary bankruptcies cannot be filed against family famers or fishermen, banks, insurance companies, credit unions, or non-profits.

 

If you’ve been avoiding debt payments for some time and are worried your creditors may try to file an involuntary case against you, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. today at (507) 387-7200 to learn more about bankruptcy in Fairmont, MN.

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Successfully Getting Credit During Repayment of Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Mankato, MN

August 21st, 2018 · No Comments

 

Bankruptcy is often viewed as a last option for those with extreme debt and low income, but there’s more than one kind of bankruptcy available to individuals and businesses. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the type of bankruptcy that fits the description that’s most often associated with being bankrupt due to the liquidation of the filer’s non-exempt assets. Chapter 13 bankruptcy, on the other hand, is a completely different process that works to reorganize a filer’s debts. If you’re struggling to meet debt payments but don’t want to possibly sacrifice non-exempt assets in a liquidation process, Behm Law Group, Ltd. can provide the legal support you need to file a strong case for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Mankato, MN.

 

If your income to debt ratio is higher than the Minnesota median income for a household of your size, you cannot qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Even if your income is low enough to pass the Means Test, you may still choose to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and keep your estate intact. In this case, you’ll work with an attorney and trustee to draft a repayment plan that is suited to your situation.

 

A Chapter 13 bankruptcy repayment plan is a highly effective way for those struggling with debt to sort through their finances under the guidelines of a three to five-year bankruptcy period. Despite the many benefits of a repayment plan, however, the period it fills is a long time. During that three to five-year period, you might experience several life changes including anything from a new job to moving into a new home. Your repayment plan could be altered to accommodate those life changes, but there are occasions where you need to operate outside of your bankruptcy plan. One common example of this is when the filer is in need of getting a loan.

 

There are few reasons an individual working through a Chapter 13 bankruptcy repayment plan may need to seek a loan, and because of your overall financial history, your trustee may or may not approve any loans you try to obtain. However, there are times when you need a little boost, whether you’re starting a business that’ll gain more revenue in the long-term or if you have a real emergency.

 

Gaining credit during your repayment plan period depends on several factors:

 

  1. Whether you receive the required court authorization and trustee approval.
  2. The type of credit you’re attempting to obtain (consumer or business).
  3. How a new loan will alter your repayment plan.

 

Generally, you may be granted permission to obtain a loan based on household emergencies. Home repairs, medical emergencies, vehicle repairs, or disaster recovery are some primary examples.

 

If you’re working through a repayment plan or considering filing for bankruptcy in Mankato, MN, Behm Law Group, Ltd. can help. To learn more about the legal support and advice our attorneys offer, contact us at (507) 387-7200 today.

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Limits on Handling Medical Debt with Bankruptcy in Worthington, MN

August 20th, 2018 · No Comments

With medical insurance getting more expensive each year and procedures becoming more technically-advanced with new equipment and medicines, individuals can easily accumulate overwhelming medical debt very quickly. While studies may debate whether severe medical debt is directly causing an increase in U.S. bankruptcies, the fact remains that it’s often a correlating problem most filers experience. Because the bankruptcy process is structured to discharge or reorganize medical debts, it’s a viable option for those who can’t pay their medical bills. With the help of Behm Law Group, Ltd., you can recover from medical debt and successfully file for bankruptcy in Worthington, MN.

Medical debt can happen gradually as chronic treatments rack up bills or all at once if an unexpected medical emergency occurs. No matter the circumstances leading up to unmanageable medical debt, those debts are treated the same in bankruptcy cases. All your medical bills are considered to be unsecured nonpriority debts in your case. To put this in perspective, your credit card debts are categorized as unsecured nonpriority debts as well.

How your unsecured nonpriority debts are handled depends on the type of bankruptcy you file for.

Chapter 13 works to reorganize debts that aren’t exempt from the bankruptcy process into a new repayment plan. Secured debts are repaid in full along with select priority debts, but your unsecured debts—like the medical bills you owe—are often only partially repaid if they’re required to be repaid at all.

Chapter 7 works to liquidate your assets to repay your creditors in return for the discharge of most debts. This discharge includes your unsecured debts and allows immediate full relief from medical bills.

Limitations on Discharges

Relief from medical bills is guaranteed if you qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy by passing the Means Test. All your unsecured debts will be dissolved in return for major liquidation of your assets. In Chapter 13 bankruptcy, there are some limitations on the relief you can receive for your medical bills. Because your medical debt is lumped into one category with all your other unsecured nonpriority debts, they’re all subject to the same limitation. This limit manifests as a cap on the amount you can include in your repayment plan. Currently, you may file for Chapter 13 if you have under $394,725 in unsecured debts. This amount will change in April of 2019 to meet standards of income and overall economic adjustments, but for now, you can resolve all your debts in a new repayment plan if you meet this and other Chapter 13 requirements.

 There may be some limits to the possibility of recovering from severe medical debt by filing for bankruptcy, but the majority of cases are highly effective in providing a solution for those struggling with hospital bills and more. For more information about filing for bankruptcy in Worthington, MN, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 today.

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