When considering whether or not to file for Maryland bankruptcy, one needs to consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney. Back in 2005, federal bankruptcy laws changed, and one considering Maryland bankruptcy needs to be aware of how the process has changed.
For instance, according to the new laws, an individual seeking to file for Maryland bankruptcy now has to receive credit counseling at least six months prior to filing. Such credit counseling helps them decide if they should even be filing for bankruptcy, when a more modest repayment plan or negotiating with creditors might work better.
As always, bankruptcy should be seen as a final resort when all other alternatives will not work. Even then, an individual needs to decide whether they should file for chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy. Both credit counseling and a good bankruptcy attorney can help one decide which kind of bankruptcy works better for their particular set of circumstances.
Chapter 7, also called straight bankruptcy, involves liquidation and ends all legal proceedings against an individual that seek to take money or personal property away from them. A court-appointed trustee goes over an individual’s debts and other finances in a meeting the individual must attend, and decides how to sell them to repay their creditors.
Exempt property is property that a chapter 7 bankruptcy filer gets to keep. Most of the time, this includes a house, car, or other household essentials. It is rare for a chapter 7 bankruptcy filer to actually lose their house or car, despite what some people might think.
Filing chapter 7 results in an automatic stay, which prohibits creditors from most collection activities, including both money and property collection.
They must petition a judge to carry on, and even then they have to prove that they have the legal right and reason to do so.
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