FAQs

1. Why should someone hire you over the dozens of other bankruptcy attorneys in Moore and Norman, OK?

The personalized service is second to none. They will deal with me and only me.

2. Is there a charge for the consultation bankruptcy visit?

No

3. At what point during the bankruptcy process will bill collectors stop calling me?

Generally, once you provide me with a small retainer, you can tell creditors they are no longer allowed to contact you and you can give them my information. So, I guess, creditors should stop calling after I receive my first payment of $300.00.

4. Will bankruptcy stop wage garnishments?

Yes

5. Is back child support dischargeable in bankruptcy?

No

6. Do I have to go to court if I file for bankruptcy?

Yes, usually only once

7. What is the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy?

Chapter 7 allows you to get a fresh start. You can get rid of all of your debt (with a few exceptions) in Chapter 7. However, in order to file for Chapter 7 you have to pass what's called the 'means test'. If you fail the means test you have to file Chapter 13, in which you provide the Chapter 13 trustee with your disposable income over a 60 month period. After five years, you get a discharge. Whoever has yet to get paid is discharged.

8. Is there a bankruptcy option that allows me to keep my property?

You can keep some of your property in both bankruptcies.

9. Can I choose which type of bankruptcy to file? How do I choose the right one?

You need to visit with an attorney to find out what your choices are. Generally, the answer to which chapter you must file will be determined by what is called the 'means test'.

10. What should I do if a creditor demands payment after I file my bankruptcy case?

Refer the matter to your attorney. Creditors cannot demand payments after bankruptcy.

11. Do I have to produce tax returns before and after my bankruptcy?

Yes, you must provide your last two years of tax returns. Sometimes, in a Chapter 7, you may be required to provide your next year's tax return as well.

12. If I decide to file for bankruptcy, what do I have to do before I file?

You must take a credit counseling class (usually costs about $20) and provide my attorney will all information he requests, including six months of pay stubs, three months of bank statements, two years of tax returns, copy of vehicle titles, and of course a listing of your creditors.

13. How much does it cost to file bankruptcy?

The filing fee for a Chapter 7 is $335. The filing fee for Chapter 13 is $310.00. Attorney fees will vary based upon the specifics of your case. I usually charge $1,300.00 for my fee in Chapter 7, and $1,200.00 up front for a Chapter 13.

14. Do all debts get discharged during bankruptcy?

No. Student loans and domestic support obligations, and some taxes do not get discharged.

15. Do I have to qualify for bankruptcy? How will I know I am eligible?

This is where the "means test" comes in. It is several pay long test that helps us determine what chapter you can file.

16. Does a bankruptcy case automatically remove liens (such as mortgages) against my property?

A bankruptcy can remove liens, but it's not automatic. If there is a lien against your property there must be a motion filed in the court to remove the lien before the bankruptcy case is finished.

17. What is the difference between secured creditors and unsecured creditors?

With secured creditors, you put up some kind of collateral, such as a home or a car. If you get behind on those payments the creditors can then repossess or foreclose. Unsecured creditors receive no collateral, so if you miss payments with them, all they can do is try to collect via the court system by filing a lawsuit. They can't repossess anything.

18. What are the long-term effects of bankruptcy? Will I ever be able to get a loan again?

It will take a couple of years, but yes, you will be able to get a loan again. I've seen people get loans immediately after a bankruptcy and if they wait two years, they generally get pretty good interest rates.

19. How do I know when my bankruptcy case is completed and I am no longer in bankruptcy?

You will receive what is called a "Notice of Discharge" in the mail.

20. What happens to my assets during a bankruptcy?

Every jurisdiction has what's called "exemptions". In Oklahoma, items such as your house, your car, your furniture and retirement plans, among others, are exempt. Anything you own that's not exempt the bankruptcy trustee will sell and try to pay back some of your creditors with that money. In the state of Oklahoma, most of your assets will be exempt.

21. Will I lose my retirement or 401(k) savings during bankruptcy?

You will not. It is exempt.

22. If I have previously filed bankruptcy, when can I file again

If you filed a Chapter 7 you have to wait 8 years before you can file another Chapter 7. You can file a Chapter 13 four years after a Chapter 7. If you want to file a Chapter 13 after you have filed another Chapter 13, you need to wait two years. Lastly, if you want to file a Chapter 7 after a Chapter 13 you must wait six years from the date the original case was filed.