Bessemer Bankruptcy Lawyers – Bankruptcy Attorney
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Our Bessemer bankruptcy attorneys currently charge about $850 to file most Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases in and around Jefferson County. Our experienced Bessemer bankruptcy lawyer can help you get financial relief and counsel you through the bankruptcy process if you are losing your battle with an unsustainable amount of indebtedness.
Filing for Bankruptcy in Bessemer
If you call today you can usually speak with our Bessemer bankruptcy lawyer over the phone for a quick consultation usually the same day you call. If necessary, we can set up a consultation later on in our Birmingham office. Our Bessemer bankruptcy attorneys are great about calling you back the same day to briefly go over your financial situation in general. Should a follow up, in-person meeting be required, we’ll be glad to set one up.
If you decide to file, there is some specific documentation you will need to get together, depending on your unique situation. For example, we usually need things like your last two years tax returns, your last six (6) months of income information such as paystubs, bank statements, and a questionnaire filled out providing us the information we need to properly analyze your situation. Once our local bankruptcy lawyer has reviewed your situation, we can help you zero in on the right course of action, determining if bankruptcy is the right option. If it is, we can move forward with the filing.
You will normally be either filing a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy is basically a three to five year payment plan where you pay your creditors off over time. It can sometimes allow you to keep a home or vehicle that you are behind on since you may be able to take the arrears and spread them out over the length of the plan and avoid foreclosure or repossession as long as you make the small payment. However, when most people think of filing bankruptcy they are thinking of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which is usually much quicker and simpler.
Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy eliminates your unsecured debts in a very short amount of time. It does not eliminate all of such debts since some specific types of debt are protected from discharging in a Chapter 7 such as child support, certain student loans, or certain tax debts. There are sometimes options available for even these types of debts but you would need to speak with our bankruptcy lawyer for more information since it is a little more complex.
To file a Chapter 7 you must qualify, and this is based on your household income. If your household income for the last six months prior to filing is less than a number on an IRS chart for a family of your size in your state, then you qualify. If it is above that number, then you have to take something called the means test, which we can run for you to see if you do or not. To make these determinations, we need your last six months income information such as pay stubs for you and your spouse if they live with you to get started.
If you qualify for Chapter 7 and we get it filed for you, then you will have to go to one hearing called a Meeting of the Creditors or 341 Hearing. Creditors do not usually show up for this meeting and it is usually an opportunity for the Trustee in your case to ask a few questions under oath. One of our Bessemer bankruptcy lawyers will be there with you for this meeting, and it is usually held about a month after you file the case.
How Much Does Filing for Bankruptcy in the Bessemer Area Cost?
The attorney fees charged by our Bessemer bankruptcy lawyer is currently $850 for simple, no asset Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases. Most Chapter 7 filings are included in this, but there may be additional costs if there are complex legal issues like divorce, corporate or other such issues that entail much more time to handle or are likely to involve hearings. However, there is always a filing fee that the court charges as well, which is currently $335 in Chapter 7 cases. There are also a few other fees for an online course you have to do and to pull your credit report, but the total to file with us is usually about $1260.
Although a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can be beneficial to you in potentially discharging your unsecured debts, sometimes another type of bankruptcy called a Chapter 13 is preferable. A Chapter 13 case is much less expensive to get filed, since most of the attorney fees get paid in the five year payment plan, so there are less cost up front. When you call our bankruptcy lawyers in Bessemer and set up a consultation, we will go over your situation and help you figure out the best option for you.
The Harris Firm regularly files bankruptcy cases in the Jefferson County area and are familiar with the local requirements in the U.S. Courts there. Attorney Steven Harris is a member of the Central Alabama Better Business Bureau and the local Birmingham Bar Association. If you need some financial relief then give our Bessemer bankruptcy attorneys a call today for a consultation in person or over the phone.