Bankruptcy in New Hampshire 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 New Hampshire 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 New Hampshire
Bankruptcy is governed by federal law, so the procedures in filing for bankruptcy in New Hampshire 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 New Hampshire 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. Chapter 13 bankruptcy typically reorganizes, rather than discharges, one's debts. Basically, the court will come up with some type of repayment plan, independent of the terms of the agreements that created the debt in the first place (superseding any acceleration clauses). This is meant to give the debtor some breathing room, allowing them to repay their debts over time, without facing financial ruin in the process.
Usually, it is businesses as opposed to individuals that avail themselves of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Similar to Chapter 13, it entails reorganization of debt, rather than discharge. The debtor has to come up with a plan to reorganize its debts, and this plan must then be approved by a vote of the participating creditors. Once the plan is approved, the debtor has to carry it out.
How Can a New Hampshire Bankruptcy Lawyer Help?
Filing for bankruptcy can be a life-changing decision. Depending on the circumstances, it can change your life for the better, or worse. A New Hampshire bankruptcy attorney can help you figure out if bankruptcy is a viable option for your particular situation.
Interesting Facts About New Hampshire
New Hampshire was one of the 13 original American colonies. It became the 9th U.S. state in the year 1788. New Hampshire's state motto of "Live Free or Die" is one of the most popular known state mottos because it reflects the American spirit of liberty and independence.
New Hampshire is a "Dillon Rule" state, meaning that the state retains all powers not specifically granted to local municipalities. Even so, the New Hampshire legislature favors local control of most issues, especially regarding land use statutes. New Hampshire is also noted for the New Hampshire Primary, which was the first primary in the four-year U.S. presidential election cycle.
As one of the original American settlements, New Hampshire also contributed a great deal to the formation and passage of the U.S. Constitution. For example, the first independent constitution in the Americas was ratified in 1776 in New Hampshire. Many famous U.S. cases have been tried in New Hampshire, such as Hawkins v. McGee (1929), a leading case on contracts damages. More recently, Philbrick v. eNom (2009) was filed in New Hampshire, which addressed Internet domain name registration and cyber-squatting laws.
Lawyers in New Hampshire continue to add to the legacy of outstanding legal advancements in the United States. New Hampshire lawyers are often at the forefront of national developments in the field of law. Experienced attorneys in New Hampshire offer services in many different areas of law.