Bankruptcy in Iowa is a legal procedure through which some of the debts of an individual or a business are discharged (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 process. 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 Iowa bankruptcy attorney 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 individual case.
Types of Bankruptcy in Iowa
Bankruptcy is governed by federal law, so the procedures in filing for bankruptcy in Iowa will be the same as anywhere else in the United States. There are 2 basic types 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 typically used by businesses called Chapter 11. Chapter 11 is available to individuals, but it is rarely the best option for them.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Iowa is sometimes called "liquidation" because it involves the forced sale of some (though certainly not all) of the debtor's assets. The bankruptcy court will appoint a trustee to oversee the appraisal and sale of some of the debtor's property, and the proceeds from the sale will go to the creditors, in their order of priority. Certain types of property are exempt, and do not need to be sold, including houses and insurance policies. Once the property is sold, and the proceeds given to the creditors, the rest of the debt is discharged. Under Chapter 13 bankruptcy, debt is typically not discharged; instead, it is reorganized. The court will craft a long-term payment plan that allows the debtor to pay off his or her debts in single payments, over time. This usually gives the debtor some breathing room that would not exist if all of his or her debts became due and payable at once.
Chapter 11 bankruptcy is usually 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 Iowa Bankruptcy Lawyer Help?
Making the decision to file for bankruptcy can be very difficult, given the potential consequences. An Iowa attorney 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 Iowa
The state of Iowa is the nation's 29th state, being admitted into the Union in the year 1846. It is known as "The Hawkeye State". The state's economy is well established in the areas of biotechnology and green energy production. Iowa is bounded by both the Missouri River and the Mississippi River. The presidential caucuses are held every four years in Iowa. w One of the main landmarks in Iowa is the state capitol building located in the capital city of Des Moines. It has a striking appearance due to its five domes. Its central dome is overlaid in 23-carat gold. The capitol building has chambers that are sometimes used by the Iowa Supreme Court, although the Supreme Court usually meets in the Supreme Court building.
As the court of last resort, the Iowa Supreme Court mostly handles appeals coming from lower Court of Appeals and the District Courts. Iowa is generally associated with legal cases involving civil rights and anti-discrimination laws. For example State of Iowa v. Katz was decided in 1949 and banned racial discrimination in public businesses. Another landmark case, Tinker v. Des Moines (1969), dealt with the rights of Iowa students seeking to express their political views. Iowa continues to be an innovator among states in terms of legal trends and policies.
Lawyers in Iowa maintain high standards of professionalism and ethics. Many Iowa lawyers have represented clients in major court decisions. An experienced attorney in Iowa can help you resolve your legal issues and inquiries.