bankruptcy

frank j. marrero yellow page ad

Free Legal Consultation


Se Habla Español

Frank J. Marrero
Bankruptcy
Attorney
9200 S. Dadeland Blvd.
Dadeland Towers, Suite 308
Miami, FL 33156
Phone (305) 670-1913 • Fax (305) 670-1919

e-mail me at frank@miami-dade-attorney.com

Chapter 7

Chapter 7 is often referred to as a "Fresh Start" or "Liquidation" bankruptcy. This type of bankruptcy is typically filed by individuals whose filing would not raise the presumption of abuse under the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005.  This type of bankruptcy normally discharges unsecured debts such as credit cards, personal loans, medical bills, repossessions, and money judgments, and deficiency on foreclosures.

In return for having the debts discharged, the bankruptcy court puts a limit on the amount of property that an individual is entitled to keep. This property is referred to as exempt property. The most common types of exempt property under Florida law are as follows (please note that those individuals who have not continuously resided in the state of Florida for at least 730 days before filing will very likely have a different list of exempt property available to them):
  • Homestead property (Your primary residence):
    (a) The entire amount of equity in a homestead property is generally protected if the individual has owned and resided in such a property within the state of Florida for more that 40 consecutive months prior to filing the bankruptcy.
    (b) Up to $136,875.00 (per spouse if both own the property and file jointly) worth of equity in a homestead property is generally protected if the individual has owned and resided in such a property within the state of Florida for more than 12 consecutive months but less than 40 consecutive months prior to filing the bankruptcy.
  • Up to $1,000.00 worth of equity (equity=value less amount owed) in a vehicle.  If a husband and wife file jointly, then they are each entitled to keep up to $1,000.00 worth of equity in a vehicle they own. (for a total of $2,000.00).
  • Up to $1,000.00 total worth of personal property, such as household goods, clothing, jewelry, and funds held in bank and investment accounts. If a husband and wife file jointly, then they are each entitled to keep up to $1,000.00 worth of personal property (for a total of $2,000.00). If the paries do not own a homestead, or are surrendering the homestead, then an additional $4,000.00 for each spouse if filing jointly (for a total of $8,000.00) can be claimed exempt and this exemption can be used for any personal property.
  • Most retirement plans, such as 401Ks, pensions, and IRAs.
  • Social security benefits.
In the majority of filed Chapter 7 cases, most, if not all, of an individual's property will be protected under the above exemptions. However, in those cases that it is not, the individual typically has the option of either turning over all non-exempt property to the bankruptcy estate in order to be sold for the benefit of their creditors or keeping the non-exempt property by paying the bankruptcy estate the monetary value of it over a relatively short period of time (typically three to nine months).

Chapter 13

Chapter 13, which is also referred to as a "Personal Reorganization" bankruptcy, may be used by individuals who have monthly disposable income in order to create a payment plan and potentially do any or all of the following: 
  • Save their home from foreclosure by catching up on and reinstating their mortgage and any other home-related debts (such as real estate taxes, assessments and association dues);
  • Pay off their IRS personal income tax debt;
  • Pay off arrearages on any domestic support obligations, such as child support and alimony;
  • Pay off any significantly "upside down" vehicles (that were purchased over 910 days before the bankruptcy filing) and financed furniture (that was purchased over 365 days before the bankruptcy filing) at the property's current market value and, potentially, at a lower rate of interest;
  • Pay a significantly reduced portion of their unsecured debts (without interest) and discharge the excess balances;
  • Protect all of their property that would be exempt under Chapter 7 as well as all of their property which might otherwise be lost in a Chapter 7;
The individual must put together a Chapter 13 Plan which makes a good faith proposal to do any or all of the above by making monthly payments over a period of up to 60 months (5 years). If the plan is confirmed (approved) by the bankruptcy court and all payments are made as required, then the individual's mortgage and other home-related debts will be reinstated, the IRS and secured personal property debts will be paid off, all remaining balances on the dischargeable unsecured debts will be eliminated, and the individual will not be forced to surrender any of their property.

Frank J. Marrero
Bankruptcy Lawyer
9200 S. Dadeland Blvd.
Dadeland Towers, Suite 308
Miami, FL 33156
Phone (305) 670-1913 • Fax (305) 670-1919

e-mail me at frank@miami-dade-attorney.com

We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.

[ Home ] [ Bankruptcy ] [ Real Estate ] [ Marital and Family Law ]

marital and family law real estate bankruptcy home