First of all there are no easy answers , but you probably know that…. Are creditors constantly calling you? Does the thought of opening your mail stress you out? Are you worried that utilities may be shut off or your car repossessed? Do you lie awake at night because you’re afraid of losing your home? Have you already dipped into savings or, worse, your retirement funds just to pay bills and buy groceries? These are all signs that you might be eligible to file bankruptcy .
Now, probably more than at any other time in the last fifty years, people are having financial trouble because of events beyond their control, such as recession, layoffs and small business owners suffering acute drop-offs in sales. No one assumes anymore that the need to file bankruptcy is somehow a reflection of the moral character of the person filing. For centuries bankruptcy has been the ultimate relief valve for those in direst of straits. Americans seem pretty unanimous in continuing to believe that bankruptcy is a valid, valuable tool in our economy. The choice of whether to seek bankruptcy relief is difficult and can be close to
heartbreaking. Many people experience shame and anxiety over filing bankruptcy. they are sometimes afraid that filing bankruptcy makes them look irresponsible, or like people who don’t want to pay their bills. But the truth is that there is no shame in filing bankruptcy. Some people need bankruptcy, and bankruptcy law exists to make sure that people having serious financial trouble can survive.
95% of the people who come to my office qualify to file bankruptcy.
This is what I have found in my over 20 years of practicing bankruptcy law. By the time a person gets to seeing a bankruptcy lawyer face to face it is bad. No no wants to come and see a lawyer about being eligible for bankruptcy .
One of the first things you might have done to discover if you are eligible to file bankruptcy is an online means test. Big mistake (… really)
It is virtually impossible for a middle class person in San Diego with a home and maybe a job to go online and have any clue if they are eligible to file bankruptcy. There are no easy spreadsheets or lists to help you figure this out. The process usually takes me about an hour to go over all the issues and questions to really understand are you eligible for bankruptcy. In my practice,we have had many people who file Chapter 7 who were making a salary of $100,000.00 per year. You might ask, how is that possible?
There are as many variables to the computation in who and how a person can file for bankruptcy, as choices of cereal at the local grocery store. How much do you owe? How close you are to retirement? Who lives with you? What is your house really worth in San Diego? Who knows that these days? It really does take a professional to figure this out.
One of my practices specialties is taking people who didn’t think they qualified for bankruptcy(or sometimes other lawyers who told it was not possible )and making that happen. Then they can move on with their lives. I am good with the difficult situations,that others can’t seem to figure out. So, if you think it is just not possible to file bankruptcy, or you make too much money or aren’t sure if you qualify. Come down to the office and let’s talk.