Bankruptcy FAQs

Bankruptcy FAQs

Utah’s Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Law Firm

No one wants to declare bankruptcy, but fortunately bankruptcy provides the needed fresh start that many of us require to make it out of an ever deepening hole of debt.  If you are contemplating seeking bankruptcy protection under either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, please call us and we will help you make it through the process smoothly.  Reach us by email or phone (888.337.3235 or locally at 801.413.1753) and find out how we can help you.

Below we include several frequently asked questions relevant to bankruptcy and their respective answers.  We hope they help.

Do I qualify for bankruptcy?

The short answer is it depends on several factors including the amount of your annual income.  To give an oversimplied answer, if you make less than the median Utah income for a family of your size then you will be able to file for bankruptcy protection.  A Salcido Law Firm bankruptcy attorney can help you understand in more depth whether you will qualify to file for bankruptcy.

You can also refer to our bankruptcy practice area pages for more information.

Which chapter is right for me?

Typically, individuals and businesses will choose between a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and a Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Chapter 7, or “liquidation” bankruptcy, is generally preferred for those who have little to no assets, no equity in their home, an unsteady income, and a lot of unsecured debt such as credit cards.

Chapter 13, or “debt payment plan” bankruptcy, is generally preferred for those who have substantial assets, a steady income, and value in their house.  In such cases, Chapter 13 allows the debtor to establish a payment plan which can last for three to five years.  The debtor’s debt can be consolidated and the debtor can pay a fixed monthly amount toward his debt, generally with decreased interest payments or no interest at all.

What happens after I file for bankruptcy?

One of the greatest benefits of filing for bankruptcy is that the automatic stay immediately kicks in and prohibits your creditors from continuing forward with any collection efforts.

After you file your bankruptcy petition you will have a “meeting with creditors.”  At the meeting of creditors the bankruptcy trustee will determine whether you have provided all of the required information.  They generally only last about 15 minutes.  After the meeting of creditors the matter is referred to the bankruptcy court and you can typically expect to be discharged.

From start to finish you are generally looking at about 90 days to complete your bankruptcy proceeding.

How long after bankruptcy discharge before my credit is restored?

For a Chapter 7 bankruptcy your credit report will reflect that you filed for bankruptcy for ten years.  For a Chapter 13 bankruptcy your credit report will reflect that you filed for bankruptcy for about seven years after discharge.  You can, however, begin to restore credit score immediately after your discharge.

By getting a secured credit card you can start to rebuild your credit within a year or two.  You can then get an unsecured credit card and rebuild it even more.  It is possible to rebuild your credit to “good” within three years of discharge.