Our Middletown Bankruptcy Lawyers Help You Get Out of Debt
Declaring bankruptcy doesn’t mean declaring defeat. In fact, it’s the opposite. Bankruptcy is a tool designed to give people like you who are overwhelmed by debt a fresh start. It provides a legal means of having much or all of your debt forgiven.
The legal team at Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer has the experience and knowledge needed to fully explain and walk you through the bankruptcy process. Don’t be intimidated by debt, bankruptcy, and creditors. Instead, talk to us.
How Our Middletown Bankruptcy Lawyers Can Help You
Our goal is simple: we want to help you manage your debt and figure out if and how bankruptcy can help you regain control of your finances. By working with a Middletown bankruptcy lawyer at our law firm, we can:
- Help you determine which type of bankruptcy is best for you
- Provide personalized support and evaluation of debt-relief options
- Handle the many complicated steps and paperwork involved with declaring bankruptcy
- Stop creditors from contacting and harassing you
- Put an end to wage garnishments, foreclosures, and repossessions
- Help you plan for a future that’s free from debt
- Ensure that the terms of your bankruptcy filing are fair and manageable
Working with an Ohio bankruptcy attorney provides many advantages. We can ensure that the process is handled correctly and that you’re not making any costly errors while filing. When filing for bankruptcy, it pays to do it right and to work with an understanding, knowledgeable team.
Why Choose Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer?
It isn’t hard to realize when debt is becoming unmanageable. Perhaps the bills have been piling up for months and interest on unpaid debt keeps growing. But, when you’re on your own, finding a way out can be difficult.
So turn to the experienced and caring team at Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer. We want to find the best debt solutions for you, including filing for bankruptcy, and for you to feel informed about and in control of your finances. But why work with our Middletown bankruptcy lawyers?
- We care. At our bankruptcy law firm, our clients come first. The people we help are facing tough financial situations. They’re worried and feel that they’ll never get out of debt. Our job is to make you and people in similar situations feel confident once more about their finances. With genuine concern, we guide clients through the bankruptcy process and help them regain financial control.
- We have experience. Our legal team has filed thousands of bankruptcy filings on behalf of clients. We’ve helped and counseled countless people like you facing financial struggles. Our Middletown bankruptcy lawyers know the ins and outs of bankruptcy and personal finance law. Most importantly, our experience lets us give solid, effective advice to our clients and demonstrate that we care.
- We keep costs low. We understand that you’re facing a tough financial situation. With that in mind, we keep our attorney fees reasonable and work with you on affordable payment plans. Because we specialize in bankruptcy, we can work efficiently, saving you time and money. Making mistakes while filing your bankruptcy claim can end up costing you more. That’s why it pays to work with an Ohio bankruptcy attorney.
- We can handle creditors. Once you begin working with our bankruptcy lawyers, we’ll take care of creditors’ harassing phone calls and inquiries. We want our clients to regain financial footing and not be harassed while doing so.
When you partner with a Middletown bankruptcy lawyer from Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer, you’ll have a trusted, experienced, and caring attorney on your side. And when facing financial struggles, help should never be far away.
Why Consider Bankruptcy?
Declaring bankruptcy is never anyone’s goal. But sometimes it is your best option. Below are several points to remember if you’re considering bankruptcy.
- Bankruptcy provides protections that can be key to avoiding further debt and harassment from creditors.
- After declaring bankruptcy, creditors and collection agencies must cease all inquiries about your debt. This means no more harassing phone calls or letters.
- Foreclosures, repossessions, wage garnishments, and lawsuits related to debt must all be stopped when you file for bankruptcy.
- It must be remembered that declaring bankruptcy does not mean declaring defeat. As a consumer and debtor, you have many financial tools at your disposal, one of which is bankruptcy. Bankruptcy offers a means to a fresh start and to handling your finances responsibly while regaining control.
The Automatic Stay and Bankruptcy Protections
As soon as you file for bankruptcy, a powerful provision called the automatic stay goes into effect. This provision is designed to protect debtors from creditors. Under federal law, the automatic stay bars creditors from contacting you concerning debt collection and unpaid debt.
The automatic stay offers robust protections, which our Ohio automatic stay attorney can explain in more detail. The automatic stay:
- Stops letters, phone calls, and other forms of harassment from creditors
- Ceases any ongoing or pending civil lawsuits related to your debt
- Prevents foreclosure, repossession, and other forms of property take-back
- Stops wages from being garnished
The automatic stay protections are legally binding provisions. They’re both powerful and effective in part because bankruptcy is designed to give debtors a fair fresh start, not to punish them. Freedom from creditor harassment is a major reason why people seek bankruptcy protections.
While the automatic stay applies to most forms of consumer debt, debt related to court proceedings and criminal charges would not qualify and must still be paid.
Which Type of Bankruptcy Is Best for You?
For debtors, there are typically two types of bankruptcy that can be used. While our Middletown bankruptcy lawyers can advise you on what’s best, you should be aware of both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Explained
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is typically used when debtors have large amounts of unsecured debt. Unsecured debt refers to debt that’s not backed by collateral, meaning there are no physical assets (like a house or car) that could be sold to pay off debt. Examples of unsecured debts include:
- Medical bills
- Credit card bills
- Personal loans
- Utility bills
If you are facing debt from mounting bills, speaking with a Chapter 7 lawyer may be your best option.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is designed to quickly consolidate and then liquidate outstanding unsecured debt. Typically, the Chapter 7 bankruptcy process lasts only about four months.. Upon conclusion, most debt is discharged, and you can begin rebuilding credit quickly.
Although bankruptcy is a useful tool for wiping the slate clean, there are limits as to how often it can be used. Your debt cannot be discharged under Chapter 7 bankruptcy if you’ve discharged debt under a previous Chapter 7 filing within the past eight years.
The Ohio Means Test and Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Not everyone will qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, however. Only debtors whose income is comparably low will qualify. In Ohio, debtors must undergo a means test that compares your household income against the median Ohio household income. Depending on the means test, you may or may not qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Explained
You might also consider filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, especially if you do not qualify for Chapter 7. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is sometimes known as a “wage earner’s” bankruptcy because it’s designed for people with steady income who are still facing overwhelming debt.
As part of Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will make steady debt repayments over a three- to five-year window. You must have at least some disposable income available in order to make these payments. By reorganizing your debt, you can pay off some of your debt through a court-approved repayment plan.
While making payments, your home will be protected from foreclosure and your vehicle will be protected from repossession, among other property protections.
Creditor harassment, wage garnishments, and civil lawsuits concerning your debt must all stop when you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is often the best choice for homeowners and individuals who have more equity. Further, Chapter 13 allows you to consolidate debt payments into one monthly payment, which helps avoid fees. In many cases, both secured debt (meaning debts like mortgages and car payments that are backed by collateral) and unsecured debt (like credit card payments and utility bills) can be consolidated.
A Chapter 13 Middletown bankruptcy lawyer can help you figure out your best choice. If Chapter 13 bankruptcy is your best option, our legal team can fully explain the process and walk you through each step. And when your three- to five-year repayment plan is complete, remaining qualified debt will be discharged.
As with Chapter 7 bankruptcy, Chapter 13 bankruptcy can be used only every so often. If you’ve had debt discharged under a previous Chapter 13 bankruptcy, then you must wait at least another two years to file for Chapter 13 again. Of course, managing debt without repeat bankruptcies is everyone’s goal.
What’s your best debt relief solution? Ask our Middletown bankruptcy lawyers.
Bankruptcy may be the only option in an otherwise hopeless situation. For people who cannot get out of debt any other way, bankruptcy is a useful and necessary tool. But it’s always best to speak with an experienced attorney before settling on whichever financial option is best for you.
Our Ohio debt settlement lawyers can help explore and decide your best options. You may be in a position to pursue debt settlement and even to negotiate the terms of your debt and repayments. Before declaring bankruptcy or deciding on doing so, make sure you have considered options and have consulted an attorney about them.
Why Work with a Middletown Bankruptcy Lawyer?
By working with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer, you can be assured that you’re receiving proper guidance on filing and assistance with filing all of the required documents with the court.. When it comes to consolidating and discharging debt, it pays to have someone advocate for you.
Further, bankruptcy filings are complicated and take time. Misfiling or making mistakes can really cost you and can slow down your case processing while your debt continues to grow. By working with a Middletown bankruptcy lawyer from the start, you’ll have a smoother, faster, and less stressful experience.
Considering Bankruptcy? Do This
If you’re considering bankruptcy, it’s important to take—and not to take—certain actions. A bankruptcy court will have to approve your bankruptcy plan, and they’ll take into consideration your financial history and potential credibility. So consider how your actions could have detrimental effects on your filing for bankruptcy.
- Do take action now. If you’re considering bankruptcy, falling further into debt will not be to anyone’s advantage. Take action and consult with a qualified bankruptcy attorney in Ohio.
- Do review all of your finances, expenses, bills, and accounts. You will need to be thorough and honest when filing for bankruptcy and to have your case approved by the bankruptcy court.
- Do speak with a Middletown bankruptcy lawyer about your situation to make sure you’re making the most advantageous decisions about your future finances.
- Don’t take on any more debt or large expenses if that can be avoided. Growing your debt before declaring bankruptcy will not help your case.
- Don’t attempt to pay off a large portion of your debt just before filing for bankruptcy. Paying a large portion to just one creditor can be seen by the court as a preferential payment and can cause problems for your case.
- Don’t hide or fail to disclose any assets or available funds when declaring bankruptcy. Doing so could jeopardize the legality of your bankruptcy case and could hinder debt forgiveness.
- Don’t delay. As debt grows, the terms of your repayment plan could become less favorable. It is better to have as many resources available as possible when filing.
By speaking with a qualified bankruptcy attorney in Ohio early on, you can ensure that you’re making the best move and pursuing the form of bankruptcy that’s best for you. Further, by working with an experienced bankruptcy attorney, you can avoid costly mistakes in the filing process.
Bankruptcy and Protecting Your Property and Possessions
It is possible to maintain a manageable lifestyle even when your debt has become unmanageable. Filing for bankruptcy offers many protections. Under federal law and Ohio law, there are many exemptions as to what you can keep after declaring bankruptcy. These exemptions are critical, as the laws behind them make sure that you don’t lose essential assets like your home or car. Protected assets and property can include your:
- Personal property and possessions, including your valuables, cash, household items, and your car
- Wages, although you may need some disposable income available for bankruptcy payments
- Benefits such as workers compensation, disability payments, and unemployment
- Support payments such as child support
- Tools of the trade, meaning essential items and equipment needed to perform your occupation
No one wants to be in a position where their home, car, or other essentials are in jeopardy. So find out more about bankruptcy protections and whether declaring bankruptcy is the best way out of debt for you.
It’s important to remember that we’re here to answer all of your bankruptcy questions. Below are some common questions that people like you are wondering. Our legal team would be happy to give you more information.
Should I Declare Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?
It’s best to consult with a Middletown bankruptcy lawyer to determine which type of bankruptcy, if any, is best. Depending on your income and types of debt, one form of bankruptcy may be preferrable to the other. Further, you may or may not qualify for a specific type of bankruptcy and other provisions.
How Long Will a Bankruptcy Declaration Stay on My Credit Report?
A bankruptcy filing will typically stay on your credit report for up to seven years. A Chapter 7 filing could stay on your report for up to 10 years. A bankruptcy declaration in the past will not automatically bar you from receiving loans, and it may likely be less harmful to your credit score than continued debt accumulation.
Which Types of Debts Cannot Be Discharged by Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy will not discharge all forms of debt. Past-due taxes, child support, alimony payments, student loans, and payments for penalties and legal fines cannot be discharged. Bankruptcy is designed to give debtors a fresh start, but it cannot be used to dismiss debts where certain parties must be repaid regardless of the circumstances.
Can I Keep My Possessions and Property If I Declare Bankruptcy?
Our attorneys will review your entire situation and advise you of what property and possessions would be protected, and advise on which Chapter of bankruptcy would be the most advantageous for you.
How Much Does a Middletown Bankruptcy Lawyer Cost?
At Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer, we strive to keep our bankruptcy attorney fees reasonable. We fully understand that you are not in a position to pay high fees, and we want to improve your financial future, not make it worse. While the complexity of your case can affect costs, because we specialize in bankruptcy and debt relief, we work efficiently and know how to quickly find solutions to your financial issues, saving you time and money.
Don’t wait until your debt has become unmanageable to get help. We can answer your bankruptcy-related questions and can help you determine whether filing for bankruptcy is a sound financial move. We’re also happy to explain and provide more detail on any of the questions above.
Don’t Face Debt and Bankruptcy Alone. Ask for a Free Consultation
The Middletown bankruptcy lawyers at Fesenmyer Cousino Weinzimmer have decades of experience helping people just like you. We’ve helped people in tough financial situations turn their finances, and their lives, around. It is possible to get out of debt, and it is possible to successfully hit the reset button by declaring bankruptcy.
Give us a call today at 614-228-4435 (Columbus), 937-222-7472 (Dayton), or 877-654-5297 (Cincinnati).
Our caring and results-driven legal team is ready to answer your questions. While we work to improve your financial situation, we also want to bring you relief from stress about money. We are truly the attorneys who care, and we would be glad to learn more about you and how we can help today.