Whether you're thinking of filing for bankruptcy for your small business or just yourself, check out the below tips, written by our Richmond bankruptcy attorney, to follow before filing for bankruptcy.
Consider Your Options
Filing for bankruptcy is a huge decision that can affect your credit for up to 10 years. Consider all possibilities before petitioning for bankruptcy. Is there any way for your to pay off your debts without filing for bankruptcy? If you are unsure, you can discuss your options with your bankruptcy lawyer. You may be able to settle or negotiate your debts, sell your property or restructure your mortgage to help you get your finances in order.
Choose the Right Bankruptcy
If you have determined that bankruptcy is the only option, consider which bankruptcy option is best for you. Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharges you of most of your debt, but may not be the best solution for someone with a regular income and a significant amount of property. Most people who have a steady income, but are unable to keep up with their debt payments choose to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. While the decision of which bankruptcy you wish to file is ultimately up to you, discussing your plan with a qualified bankruptcy attorney can help ensure you get the best financial strategy possible.
Do Not Try to Hiding Assets
While working with your Richmond bankruptcy attorney, be honest as you create your schedule. Avoid hiding any income, assets or property from your lawyer. If you intentionally hide anything, your case can be dismissed, and you could be charged with a criminal defense.
Discuss Debts that Will Not Be Discharged
After you have filed your petition, discuss with your attorney what debts will not be discharged and formulate a plan for how you hope to pay them off. Examples of debts that do not qualify for discharge are student loan debt, tax debts, and child support debts.