If you are nervous about talking to a bankruptcy lawyer, you are not alone. A lot of people feel this way, especially when they are afraid they may not qualify for Chapter 7. If you don't qualify for Chapter 7, it's not the end of the world because you will probably qualify for Chapter 13. Before you schedule an appointment with a bankruptcy attorney to see if you qualify, it's important for you to know these three major conditions you must meet in order to file for Chapter 7.
Eight years is the rule when it comes to the frequency of how often a person can file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. If you have never filed for bankruptcy before, you could easily pass this requirement. If you have filed for bankruptcy, here are two things you should know:
- If you filed for Chapter 7 in the past, you cannot file another Chapter 7 until eight full years have passed since the date you filed.
- If you filed for Chapter 13 in the past, you cannot file for Chapter7 until six full years have passed since the date you filed.
If you can pass this requirement, you may want to move on to learn about the next one.
The means test is always used when people file for bankruptcy, and it is a test that determines if you qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy based on the income you have, your family size, and the debts you must pay each month.
While you can try to take this test online, it can be very complicated, and it is often better to let an attorney calculate it for you. This test is basically used to compare your income to the median income guidelines in your state. If your income falls below the guidelines, you may be eligible for Chapter 7.
Lack of valuable assets
The third thing you can look at is the assets you have. If you do not own any large assets that are worth money, it will be easier for you to file for Chapter 7. If you own an RV, a boat, and a sport's car, and if they are all paid off, filing for Chapter 7 might be slightly harder to do.
If you do qualify for Chapter 7, you are probably going to lose these types of assets because they can be sold to collect cash that will be used to pay off your creditors.
If you believe that you will qualify for Chapter 7, you may want to schedule an appointment with a bankruptcy attorney today. This will help you learn more about the process, and you will find out for sure if you qualify or not.