Phoenix Bankruptcy Law News

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Phoenix

While a Chapter 13 bankruptcy filing allows debtors to schedule a plan to repay their debts, Chapter 7 bankruptcy wipes almost all of the debt clean. However, you have to “liquidate,” or give away, any non-exempt property in exchange. In order to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a filer must have an income that is equal to or below the state’s median income. If you do have an income over the median, you can take a “means test” which assesses the income you have left over after paying creditors within the preceding six months. Once you are approved, however, courts will issue an automatic stay against, or protection from, creditors.

Every state has different income guidelines and not all types of debt can be discharged through Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceedings. You should consult a Phoenix Bankruptcy attorney to see if filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the right decision for you.

Recently in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Category

Do I Still Owe Taxes After Bankruptcy?

Does bankruptcy relieve your tax obligations? It's a common question debtors ask this time of the year.

Whether you owe taxes after bankruptcy will depend on a variety of factors, including the type of bankruptcy case you filed and the type of tax obligation at issue.

In some circumstances, bankruptcy law permits the discharge of tax debt. Generally, it's more feasible in Chapter 7 than in Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

85% of Arizona Bankruptcies Were Chapter 7 in 2013

Arizona residents file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy far more than they do Chapter 13, according to the U.S. Bankruptcy Courts' statistical findings for 2013.

According to these statistics, 19,513 residents filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the state last year. By contrast, only 2,935 individuals filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Why the stark divide between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13?

Here are a few reasons why people might favor Chapter 7 over other forms of bankruptcy:

What Is Bankruptcy Court?

Bankruptcy courts have exclusive power to hear all bankruptcy cases. Judges in bankruptcy court are authorized to make the final decisions on your case.

Bankruptcy courts operate on a federal level. In Arizona, there are five federal court locations throughout the state that hear bankruptcy cases. Although federal laws govern bankruptcy proceedings, there are local rules and exemptions that apply only in Arizona.

So how do bankruptcy courts fit into the overall justice system?

Do Married Couples Have to File Joint Bankruptcy?

If a spouse needs to file bankruptcy in Arizona, does that mean that a married couple in Arizona has to file jointly?

Joint bankruptcy is an option available for married couples, allowing them to file with one petition. When spouses file jointly, their property and debts are combined into the same bankruptcy filing. This may be ideal for married couples who have already combined their assets. However, if one spouse wants to own the responsibility of filing bankruptcy, without obligating his or her spouse, joint bankruptcy may not be appropriate.

Bankruptcy is full of difficult choices, the first of which involves choosing the right lawyer for you and your case.

Without the right guidance, you could end up with an attorney who's overextended or inexperienced. That's why we've put together five tips to help you find the bankruptcy lawyer who's right for you.

Getting a Tax Refund? Now's the Time to File for Bankruptcy

It's tax season. Interestingly, there seems to be a correlation between tax season and bankruptcies. According to the Los Angeles Times, bankruptcies rise after tax refunds are issued.

A study conducted by several universities found that for the 2008 tax year, bankruptcy filings increased 7% after the IRS issued tax refunds.

So in a way, are we seeing a "bankruptcy season" following tax season? Quite possibly. But why is that?

How to Get Help With Bankruptcy

When bills pile up and money is tight, many people start to wonder how bankruptcy works and how to get help. But the right time to ask these questions is long before things get desperate.

Money struggles happen to everyone at some point in life. For people who have an on-call "family lawyer" or participate in a legal plan, it's easy to find answers to questions about bankruptcy without adding to your debt.

For others, it's not quite so easy, though there's a lot of information available online. Knowing some basics about bankruptcy, and what the process entails, is a good place to start.

Top 3 Bankruptcy Tips of 2012

With the economy still in shambles, bankruptcy is on many people’s minds. But is it the right move for you?

Over the past year, we’ve covered a number of alternatives to bankruptcy. Here are our top three tips of 2012. Hopefully, they’ll get you on the right track to financial recovery in 2013.

Most people file for bankruptcy to wipe out their debt and get a fresh start. Sometimes, however, the fresh start isn't so fresh.

Actor Gary Busey filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy back in February, listing about $500,000 in debts. Last week the broke actor's bankruptcy case was completed, but he's still in the hole to the tune of about $450,000, TMZ reports.

As investigator Warrick Brown on CBS’ “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” actor Gary Dourdan brought criminals to justice every week. However, in real life, Dourdan has been on the wrong side of the law on more than one occasion.

Those brushes with the law have cost the actor a lot. Back in August, Dourdan filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, claiming a whopping $1.73 million in debt, according to TMZ.