Bankruptcy is a legal procedure allowing a person or business to have their debts absolved, in part or in whole. It is normally treated as a last resort, because, while it can prevent financial catastrophe, it has some huge long-term consequences. This warrants careful consideration of the costs and benefits. Being a creation of federal law, bankruptcy will go through federal courts. Accordingly, the process for filing for bankruptcy in Maryland is essentially the same as the process anywhere else in the United States. However, particular courts in Salisbury, Maryland will have particular rules for exemptions, so you should speak with a local attorney before filing.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Salisbury, Maryland
In Salisbury, Maryland, there are 2 commonly-used types of consumer bankruptcy: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Chapter 7 involves liquidation of part of a debtor's assets. It requires that a certain percentage of the debtor's property to be sold to pay off as much debt as possible. The majority of property that most people own, however, is exempt. This normally includes homes, vehicles, retirement accounts, and others. These are not available to creditors.
Once the qualifying property is sold, and the funds transferred to the creditors, the dischargeable debt is cleared. Some forms of debt, however, can't be absolved in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Salisbury, Maryland. These include student loans, criminal fines, and taxes, among others. If most of your debt can't be absolved, Chapter 7 may not be the best choice for you.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Salisbury, Maryland
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Salisbury, Maryland is very different from Chapter 7. Whether or not it is a better option is very dependent on the facts of each particular case. Chapter 13 bankruptcy does not discharge debt. Instead, it restructures it. This involves the bankruptcy court coming up with a new payment plan that supersedes the terms of the contracts that gave rise to the debt in the first place. This results in a altered payment plan that the debtor should find manageable, if he or she can make a few sacrifices.
Which Type of Consumer Bankruptcy Should I File in Salisbury, Maryland
Chapter 13 is normally a good option for people who have a stable income, and a large amount of non-exempt property that they can't part with. On the other hand, if most of the debtor's property is exempt, and he or she does not have a stable income, Chapter 7 might be more beneficial.
Whatever your situation, you should speak with a local Salisbury, Maryland bankruptcy lawyer. Your attorney will be able to advise you of your options and their likely outcomes, which will help you make a more educated decision.