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Millions of Americans, and thousands of Long Island residents, are drowning in a sea of debt. This debt has many different causes. Some people are faced with underwater mortgages for houses they never should have bought. Other people are forced to pay massive medical bills or run up tens of thousands of dollars on credit cards. These people are often overwhelmed by the process of asking for help or applying for discharge. This feeling can be mitigated somewhat by the emergency discharge process. Emergency bankruptcy is by no means a solution to a person's financial problems. Instead, it is a tool that a person can use to stem the damage from their obligations and eventually get back on track. If you are looking for emergency bankruptcy filing in New York or on Long Island, contact The Law Offices of Adam C. Gomerman today to speak with an experienced Long Island bankruptcy attorney.

Why would one need an emergency bankruptcy filing?

The process of gaining official debt liquidation or repayment is a time-consuming one. It can involve signing and processing a number of forms and aggregating a considerable amount of financial data. This process can be stressful for a person who has nothing else to do. But people who are going through discharge are incredibly stressed and face pressure from a number of different areas. They are often being harassed by creditors and bill collectors. The tactics of many bill collectors are ruthless and unscrupulous. Some collectors knock on a person's door and directly demand the money that is owed. They can call at many hours of the day and constantly send pieces of mail threatening wage garnishment. In many instances, bill collectors will try illegal tactics such as impersonating law enforcement. They count on people facing overwhelming bills to be too overwhelmed to fight back and file charges. In many instances, that assumption is correct. Some parts of the bill collection system are irreversible. Many banks will have a foreclosure sale for people who are far enough behind on their debts. These sales are final and cannot be undone. Therefore, people sometimes need an emergency option to stop the foreclosure system at any time. Emergency creditor relief filing is useful for these situations. A person can go through an immediate filing and secure an immediate halt on a foreclosure procedure. They can then work their way through the procedure and secure protections for their property. Preparing a filing is much easier when a person is able to do so in the comfort of their own homes.

Types of bankruptcy Long Island, New York

Along with filing for official protection from their creditors, individuals looking for an emergency filing on Long Island or New York need to determine what kind they are filing for. Chapter 13 is a common form that involves a person setting up a sanctioned debt repayment plan out of their regular income. This type of bankruptcy is for people who have a considerable income and still work a job. It can be less debilitating to a person's overall credit score and credit history than a Chapter 7 discharge. In Chapter 7 in NY, a person secures discharge of their debt except for special cases such as student loan debt. Chapter 7 discharge takes away many types of property from a person and sells that property in order to help discharge debt. Creditors, like credit card companies and hospitals holding medical bills, line up and are paid according to the importance of their bills as determined by a court. Some creditors will receive nothing in a process that reflects the risk they took on when they made a loan or extended a line of credit. People who go through Chapter 7 often are unable to borrow money for seven years. They have to start over financially from scratch but are able to do so without fear of foreclosure or constant calls from bill collectors.

Steps to filing for bankruptcy on long island

There are multiple steps to filing for bankruptcy on Long Island. The first step to an immediate bankruptcy filing is filling out a skeleton form. This form has a number of sections that must all be filled out quickly. There is a general information petition where an individual lists their identifying information, the basics of their situation, and what chapter they would like to file under. A person fills out this form along with a list of creditors and their addresses. This list is essential to informing these persons that they need to stop all collections procedures while a person is filing for official protection from their creditors. Then, a person needs to address the credit counseling requirement. They must show that they have attended credit counseling and that it has been unsuccessful in allowing them to meet their credit obligations. Finally, there is the filing of a form of dismissal along with the skeleton form. The form of dismissal provides for a legal justification to dismiss a case if the full amount of paperwork is not turned in within 14 days. All of these forms are filed together along with a fee. If a person cannot pay the fee or wants a payment plan, they can file a form requesting a waiver. All of these forms are quickly reviewed and put into action. Once the Long Island court accepts the emergency filing with the blessing of a lawyer review, they can immediately send out notices to creditors stopping all actions. The creditors then have 14 days to wait until it becomes clear what a person is going to do. If the person does not file their paperwork, they can go back to wage garnishment or foreclosure in order to retrieve their bills. But if they succeed in filing the paperwork, they are once again halted and have to go through the discharge process.

What to do next?

Any individual who is considering an immediate bankruptcy filing in Long Island needs to first consult an attorney and a financial adviser. The financial adviser and attorney will help an individual gauge their financial situation and determine if discharge is right for them. Many people feel overwhelmed by their bills and simply want out as quickly as possible. Professionals will help a person determine if they need to go this drastic step and what they need to do. Most courts in NY require that a person also go through credit counseling before filing for bankruptcy. The person should follow the suggestions of credit counseling as they attempt to work their way out of their debt problems. If a person has to file for emergency bankruptcy, they should first start by quickly filling out the required forms with the help of an attorney. Then, they should focus on filling out other required forms associated with creditor protection with the help of a lawyer. These forms include itemized lists of different pieces of property and means test forms as well as lists of expenses and income. Such forms help a court better ascertain a person's financial situation and the best way for creditors to receive as much as they reasonably can. A person needs to put all of their time and effort into filling out these forms on time. Missing a filing deadline can be debilitating in many ways. It can lead to a person being poorly treated in any future discharge filings as well.

Conclusion

An emergency bankruptcy filing should be viewed as a final step in the debt repayment process. People should do everything they can in order to avoid this drastic step. It may not be particularly helpful in the bankruptcy process after the emergency declaration has been granted. Enlisting the help of a lawyer may also cost money that a person does not think they have. But the process may be worthwhile if it means the difference between keeping or losing one's house.

To speak with a qualified, experienced bankruptcy attorney on Long Island today, contact our offices immediately to schedule your consultation.
Owning a company can be stressful, especially if your personal finances are in jeopardy. Bankruptcy seems to be the logical way out for financial woes, but you must wonder how this will affect your establishment. The structure of the company will dictate if any of the company assets can be used to pay back your creditors.

You have a few options when it comes to bankruptcy, but it's best to speak with an attorney to properly advise you on the best route. As an individual, you can file either a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13.
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If you don't have the right amount of health insurance coverage, a serious health complication or injury that results in a trip to the hospital can cause you to be provided with costly health care bills that you have no way of paying. In many cases, these bills are unable to be repaid in a timely manner, which can cause the affected individual to file for Chapter 7 in an attempt have their debts discharged. If you're thinking about filing for bankruptcy because of the medical debts that you owe, it's important that you speak with a reputable attorney who can help guide you through this extensive process.

What Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Entails

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is available to certain individuals who are no longer able to make their loan payments and pay off their credit cards. When a person files for this form of bankruptcy, some of these debts will be erased and discharged. In order to repay what you owe, most of your possessions will be sold, which includes any cars that you own and even your home. You might want to consider the Chapter 13 option if you want to be able to hold on to some of your more important possessions.

While in Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must continue to pay child support, spousal support, utilities, mortgage, rent, income tax, and insurance. If you belong to a homeowners' association, you must pay it. Chapter 7 is for individuals or business entities. Your checking account should not be in a lienholder's bank. Because you can lose your insurance by filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your insurance policies should be paid a year in advance. Rental cars, leased furniture, leased business equipment, and home appliances not paid for in full are examples of items that can be returned to their owners. You can discharge the deficiency balance.

Post-Petition Payments and Chapter 7

Post-petition payments are due after you file your initial petition for Chapter 7 or those that you'll continue to pay after your debts are discharged. Medical bills incurred prior to filing your petition may be discharged. Bills from the same doctor while you're waiting for your final discharge must be paid. Examples of post-petition payments are student loans, debts for extravagant purchases, and court judgments and expenses.

Automatic Stay During Chapter 7


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Bankruptcy was designed to provide consumers a method of restructuring, reducing or eliminating debt, although not all types of debt can be eliminated through bankruptcy. The two most common types of bankruptcy are Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which is a debt discharge, and Chapter 13, which is a debt restructuring. Both types of bankruptcy guidance are offered by The Law Offices of Adam C. Gomerman here on Long Island.

Before you can file any forms for your discharge, you’ll need credit counseling from an agency that’s government-approved. This is mandatory and should be completed immediately before filing. Many consumers file for Chapter 7 on their own, which is called “pro se” or “pro per” representation. Although filing Chapter 7 for yourself will be arduous and tedious, if you are detail-oriented, you can do it and save some money on attorney fees. However, it’s always wise to have an attorney peruse your forms before you file them so that they aren’t returned for errors or improper filing procedures.

Learn the Bankruptcy Law in New York State

Laws have changed regarding bankruptcy, so familiarize yourself with the most recent changes, and ensure that you follow the instructions provided by the clerk’s office. Sometimes, issues can arise from matters as simple as using the wrong typeface, so be sure you’re aware of the information details about the correct process for filing. In preparation for filing Chapter 7, you’ll need a list of all your assets and liabilities. This includes your:
  • Home and other real estate
  • Furniture and appliances
  • Vehicles, tools, and equipment
  • Bank accounts, stocks, bonds, securities, cash on hand
  • Jewelry, clothing, and other personal assets
  • Animals used for commercial purposes or expensive hobbies
You’ll also need a list of all your creditors including credit cards, student loans, child support or any other entity to which you owe money or make monthly payments. You’ll need addresses and account numbers. Some types of debt, such as child support or student loans, are not dischargeable through bankruptcy, so make sure that filing Chapter 7 will accomplish your goals. Most of your assets will be liquidated in Chapter 7 so be prepared for that event. It will also become a matter of public record and will be available for friends, family, co-workers and prospective employers. Hiring a lawyer before you file may be money well spent so that you pursue the best course for your circumstances. It’s possible that a Chapter 13 or another avenue may be better for you.

Documentation Needed to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

You’ll need proof of income for the last six months as well as proof of expenses. Only consumer debt is considered, business debts aren’t included in this type of bankruptcy. This documentation is necessary in order for the court to determine your disposable income each month. If your median income is less than the median income for your area, then you’ll most likely be allowed to file for Chapter 7. If you have significantly more income than the median in your state and city, then the court may require additional proof of your need to file. Some individuals aren’t required to take the means test, including:
  • Disabled veterans
  • Some active duty personnel
  • Those with business debt rather than consumer debt
Some types of income aren’t included in the means test, such as:
  • SSI, SSDI, TANF, and Social Security Retirement
  • Payments to a victim of terrorism
  • Payments to a victim of a war crime
Income that’s included in the means test includes:
  • Wages, including bonuses and overtime, tips, commissions
  • Net business income
  • Rental income, royalties, dividends, annuities
  • Unemployment and worker’s compensation
  • Spousal support
  • State disability payments
The court will use all the financial information you provide -- income, expenses, and assets -- to conduct a means test that will determine your eligibility to file bankruptcy. The means test is only used for individuals or couples, it’s not used for businesses who file. If you urgently need to file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 but time constraints limit your ability to amass and complete the forms, you may be able to submit an emergency filing that will provide you with the court-ordered stay that will protect your income and assets from being seized or attached. Laws governing Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 vary by state, but most don’t allow non-attorney personnel to provide legal advice or information to pro se representatives, so court clerks won’t be able to answer any legal questions. Some states allow you to initiate your case online, and you may be eligible for a fee waiver if you can’t afford the filing fees, which vary by state.

The Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Process

Once you have the information necessary to complete the forms, the following procedures will guide you through the process:
  • Get credit counseling if you haven’t already done so. Ask our office for credit help.
  • Obtain the forms, including the fee waiver if needed.
  • Complete the forms.
  • Consult with an attorney or a legal service to ensure that the forms are completed correctly.
  • File the forms. Protection from creditors is immediate upon filing your case.
  • A trustee will be assigned to your case and usually, the trustee is a lawyer.
  • A meeting of your creditors will occur and you’ll probably need to attend unless you have hired a lawyer.
  • Your eligibility to file will be determined.
  • Secured debt and property that isn’t secured are processed.
  • You’ll receive your discharge and your case will be closed within about a month..

Life After Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

After your case has been discharged, you’ll need to work on rebuilding your life and your credit. With the proliferation of Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 filings in recent years, more programs are available that will help with rebuilding credit and rebuilding your life. It was an event that was necessary, it happened. Don’t castigate yourself, use it as a learning tool and profit from the experience.
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