Many bankruptcy attorneys offer free consultation visits with people who need debt relief services, and one of the first things that attorneys do is complete a means test. A means test allows a lawyer to see if a person qualifies for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If the person fails the test, they cannot use Chapter 7. If you pass the test, you are eligible for Chapter 7, but does this mean that you should use this branch? Here are several things to know to help you decide.
The Debts You Owe
If you met with a bankruptcy attorney and passed the means test, you can likely assume that you are experiencing financial issues. You would not have met with a bankruptcy lawyer if you were not having debt problems. The question, though, is what types of debts are you struggling to pay? This question is the primary one your attorney will ask. If you want to receive the best advice for your unique case, you should come prepared for this meeting. One way to prepare is by bringing a list of all your debts.
Your attorney will want to look at your list to determine if Chapter 7 would provide the relief you need the most. Attorneys can give you an answer to this by viewing your debts. If you owe money for qualifying debts, using Chapter 7 might be advantageous. If you owe money on unqualifying debts, using Chapter 7 might not provide the relief you need the most.
The Other Situations in Your Life
Bankruptcy attorneys are interested in several other things, and these are things they must know before offering advice. First, do you own a house? If so, where do you stand with the house, equity, and mortgage? If you missed some payments on your house, using Chapter 7 might not be the best choice for your situation. If you have a substantial amount of equity in your home, Chapter 7 might not be the best option.
Next, your lawyer might ask you about your assets. The risk you take with Chapter 7 is the potential loss of assets. People with a lot of wealth do not benefit as much from Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases, as the courts can take their wealth if they file.
These are the things that bankruptcy attorneys ask about when meeting with people interested in filing for bankruptcy. You can learn more by meeting with a bankruptcy attorney in your city.