Your Bankruptcy Attorney in Tustin, CA

Hemming & Associates, P.C. garners a highly experienced team of bankruptcy attorneys.  We can assist you with the process of filing for bankruptcy protection and help you decide if there is a better option for you. 

While bankruptcy can be a very compelling financial tool, it certainly is not the option that anyone should lightly undertake. You should carefully analyze your individual financial condition with a bankruptcy attorney to insure that this is your best alternative. At Hemming & Associates, P.C., we will review your specific situation and help you make the correct decision at no initial charge.

Bankruptcy can often stop foreclosure proceedings, and stop the harassment by creditors. Judgments that have resulted in wage garnishments can often be discharged. Medical bills, deficiency judgments on a repossessed automobile and utility back payments can often be handled. A free consultation with our firm can help you decide whether your urgent financial situation can be helped by the filing of a bankruptcy petition.

Upon the filing of either a chapter 7 or a chapter 13 petition, the bankruptcy court enters an automatic stay for most collection proceedings against you. The stay of proceeding is a court order that restrains all creditors covered by the order to stop any and all collection attempts.

Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Lawyers

Most individuals file either chapter 7 or a chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 is commonly referred to as a “liquidation”, where the petitioner has a legal obligation to list all assets and all liabilities. In a chapter 7 case, all assets that are not protected with either a state or federal exemption are turned over to the bankruptcy trustee for sale or liquidation. 

Accordingly, one of the determining factors in deciding which bankruptcy chapter is appropriate is which assets, if any, are left without the protection of an exemption. If any assets are left without the protection of an exemption, then one may consider the option of filing a chapter 13.

Additionally, one has to pass the Means Test in order to qualify to file for chapter 7.  The Means Test is designed to eliminate the chapter 7 option for debtors who have too much disposable income. To accomplish this goal, the petitioner’s monthly income is compared to the income of others with the same family size living in your geographic location. If your income exceeds the mean income for your locality, and you have too much disposable income, you may consider chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Chapter 13 is a reorganization of debt. In a chapter 13 proceeding, there is no chance of the debtor losing any property through liquidation even if the debtor’s assets are not protected with an exemption. However, the debtor in a chapter 13 would be obligated to pay back a portion of the obligations owing to certain creditors over a 36-60 month period. 

The amount of the payment is determined by one’s disposable income calculation. Further, the amount that one has to repay is also dependent upon the type of creditor. Is the debt owed to a secured creditor (i.e. mortgage), a priority creditor (i.e. taxes owed to a governmental unit), or an unsecured creditor (i.e. credit cards)? 

If you want to retain your home, then generally one would have to pay off all arrears owed to your mortgage company within your chapter 13 plan period. Taxes outstanding within three years of the filing of the tax return would also have to be fully paid in the chapter 13 plan period. There is no similar obligation to pay credit card bills and other unsecured creditors.

While chapter 13 is more complicated, it can be a very important financial tool. If you are behind in your mortgage payments and want to save your home from foreclosure, chapter 13 options might be an appropriate consideration. If you are underwater with your first mortgage (mortgage balance exceeds the value of your residence), and you want to discharge your junior liens (second mortgage), chapter 13 may be a suitable fit. 

Under certain circumstances, one may even be able to reduce the amount of a car loan to the current value of the vehicle in chapter 13. For these reasons, it is very important to first determine one’s particular needs before deciding which bankruptcy is appropriate.

Our bankruptcy attorneys will help you choose the best option and assist you throughout the entire bankruptcy process. Call us today at (844) 869-0999.

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Your Trusted Bankruptcy Firm

Hemming & Associates, P.C. is available to discuss your options and help you understand the different types of debt. We will also help you understand and comply with your tax obligations, as these are priority debts, even during bankruptcy.

Let us handle your bankruptcy process, helping you get a fresh start, and settle your debts in the best possible manner for your specific situation.

As a law firm in Tustin, CA, we serve clients in these areas:

  • Santa Ana, CA
  • North Tustin, CA
  • Orange, CA
  • Irvine, CA
  • Lake Forest, CA
  • Mission Viejo, CA
  • Anaheim, CA
  • Fullerton, CA
  • Westminster, CA
  • Yorba Linda, CA
  • Laguna Niguel, CA

For more information on bankruptcy law services, call us today at (844) 869-0999 to set up a consultation.

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