The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a financial toll on Americans over the last year. We saw the unemployment rate exceed 14 percent in the spring of 2020. Since then, it has gradually declined to a low of 6.3 percent in January 2021, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
We previously discussed the possibility of personal bankruptcies increasing in 2021. That's because the CARES Act (Continued Assistance for Unemployment Workers Act) is set to expire on March 14, 2021. While there is currently a positive outlook on the U.S. economy in the coming months, millions of Americans will struggle to make ends meet due to the economic impact of COVID-19. To better help struggling South Caroline residents, Benjamin R. Matthews and Associates, LLC is still offering no money down Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing for those who qualify.
How much does it typically cost to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy?
Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in South Carolina can be expensive. Many law firms ask you to pay their fees up front before your case is filed. But many people who are considering bankruptcy simply don't have the money to take the necessary steps to declare their financial freedom. That's why our law firm offers no money down Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing.
What are the benefits of Chapter 7 bankruptcy?
There are certain aspects of Chapter 7 bankruptcy you can take advantage of. Before filing, it's critical that you pass the "means test" (or income test) to see if you qualify. You must also determine if Chapter 7 bankruptcy is right for you, as opposed to Chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you qualify and decide to file, here's what you can expect:
- It will completely eliminate certain unsecured debts. This includes credit cards, utility bills, personal loans, back rent and medical bills. It doesn't eliminate child support or alimony, tax debt or student loans.
- You get to keep certain future property and income. You may lose some of your income or property through a lien during Chapter 7 bankruptcy. But Chapter 7 bankruptcy will allow you to keep certain property and assets after filing. Certain property such as inherited property, life insurance proceeds and death benefits may be part of the bankruptcy estate.
- There is no limit on how much debt you can discharge. Chapter 13 bankruptcy sets a limit on how much secured and unsecured debt you can file for, but Chapter 7 has no such limit.
- You don't have to repay the discharged debt. Unlike Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which requires you to pay some of the debt through installments, Chapter 7 doesn't require you to pay back any of the debt that is discharged.
- Debt is quickly discharged. It generally takes 3 – 6 months after filing for the court to issue a discharge order. A complete discharge may occur within at least three months.
How do I get started?
To get started on filing for bankruptcy, it's best to first consult with an attorney who understands how the process works. The attorneys at Benjamin R. Matthews and Associates, LLC will work with you every step of the way to ensure that the filing process is error-free. We will also counsel you on your rights and which actions you should take to avoid having your bankruptcy denied by the court.
Our law firm is located in Columbia, Florence and Rock Hill, South Carolina. To get started, contact us online or call one of our law offices to set up your free initial consultation.