Bankruptcy in Arizona is a legal process through which some of the debts of an individual or a business are absolved (excused). You should not view bankruptcy as an opportunity to eliminate your debts just because you don't feel like paying them - it can be a long and difficult procedure. Bankruptcy is designed to be a last resort to prevent complete financial ruin, while allowing creditors to collect at least some of their debts in an orderly fashion. Filing for bankruptcy can have major negative effects on one's credit score, which will make it more difficult to get loans in the future.
Accordingly, if you are considering bankruptcy as an option, you need to thoroughly examine the costs and benefits. A good Arizona bankruptcy lawyer can advise you as to the pros and cons of bankruptcy, and give his or her expert opinion about whether or not bankruptcy is a good option, based on the facts of your distinct case.
Types of Bankruptcy in Arizona
Bankruptcy is governed by federal law, so the procedures in filing for bankruptcy in Arizona will be the same as everywhere else in the United States. There are 2 basic forms of bankruptcy that consumers typically use: Chapter 7, and Chapter 13, owing their names to where they are found in the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. Additionally, there is a form of bankruptcy normally used by businesses called Chapter 11. Chapter 11 is available to individuals, but it is rarely the best option for them.
In Arizona, Chapter 7 bankruptcy is known as "liquidation." When a person files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a trustee is appointed by the bankruptcy court to do an accounting of the debtor's property. The trustee then determines what pieces of property, if any, should be sold off to pay off the debts. Many forms of property are exempt from forced sale up to a certain dollar amount, including houses, cars, and retirement accounts. Once the property is sold, any remaining dischargeable debt is eliminated. Chapter 13 bankruptcy involves restructuring, rather than discharging, one's debt. Essentially, the court structures a debt repayment plan meant to allow the debtor to pay off his or her debt in manageable installments, while allowing the debtors to eventually collect at least some of what is owed to them.
Chapter 11 bankruptcy is typically used by businesses, rather than individuals. Much like Chapter 13, it involves reorganization of debts. It compels the debtor to come up with a reorganization plan, but this plan has to be approved by a majority vote of participating creditors. Once it is approved, the company is obligated to carry it out.
How Can a Arizona Bankruptcy Lawyer Help?
Making the decision to file for bankruptcy can be extremely difficult, given the potential consequences. An Arizona lawyer specializing in bankruptcy can advise you of the likely consequences you will face if you file, and help you determine if they are outweighed by the potential benefits.
Interesting Facts About Arizona
Arizona is a state located in the southwestern United States. Known for its distinct southwestern culture and arid climate, Arizona's economy is largely influenced by the vacation and tourism industries. Arizona is the 48th state and the last of the "contiguous" (mainland) U.S. states to achieve statehood.
Arizona's capital city is Phoenix. The Capitol Building is famous for its distinctive architecture, which features a copper dome. The dome is said to represent the state's nickname, "The Copper State". The Capitol Building is mostly used for historical exhibits in the museum located within. The Arizona State Legislature meets in buildings adjacent to the original Capitol building. Arizona is known for its collection of unique laws, particularly in the areas of open carry gun laws, immigration policies, same-sex marriage, and motorcycle laws.
The judicial system of Arizona is formed by several different levels and branches of courts. These include the Arizona Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, Superior Courts, and Justice of the Peace Courts. There are also over 80 Municipal Courts in Arizona. Unlike in other states, municipal judges and justices of the peace are not required to be lawyers.
Lawyers in Arizona practice law according to the highest professional and ethical standards, which are set both nationally and locally by state authorities. Arizona lawyers are often at the forefront of the nation's legal trends and policies. An experienced attorney in Arizona can assist you with legal inquiries or disputes in court.