Bankruptcy FAQs

Learning About Bankruptcy

No one ever envisions themselves falling into insurmountable debt. However, the recent economic and housing downturns have forced many hardworking people into significant financial hardship.

At Blanton Law, P.A., we help people throughout Sarasota and Manatee County gain a fresh financial start through filing bankruptcy. We want people to understand their debt relief options in order to make informed decisions regarding their future. Contact us online or call 941-584-4263 or 888-610-0968 for a free initial consultation.

Answering Frequently Asked Questions About Bankruptcy

If you are contemplating bankruptcy, you most likely have many questions and concerns. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding bankruptcy:

  • What is bankruptcy? Bankruptcy is a legal option that provides a fresh financial start to individuals and businesses who are unable to pay their debt.
  • Will filing for bankruptcy stop creditor harassment? Yes. As soon as you file for bankruptcy, creditors must contact your attorney and are no longer allowed to contact you directly.
  • What are the different types of bankruptcy? The most common types of consumer bankruptcy are Chapter 7 liquidation and Chapter 13 debt reorganization. Additionally, Chapter 11 is an option that allows businesses and individuals with very significant debt to reorganize their debt. Chapter 12 is reserved for family farmers and fisherman.
  • Can I keep my home, car and other personal belongings? In most cases, people are able to keep their home and car along with other personal belonging. In fact, filing for bankruptcy can be an effective tool in avoiding foreclosure.
  • Will I be able to restore my credit? Yes. Over time you will be able to rebuild your credit.
  • Does filing bankruptcy put me in danger of losing my job? No. You are not in danger of losing your job by filing for bankruptcy.
  • Does my spouse need to file with me? No. However, it is important to understand that your spouse's income will be taken into account when applying the Means Test.
  • What is the difference between bankruptcy and debt consolidation? Bankruptcy is a legal process which can reduce or eliminate debt owed to creditors. Debt consolidation is a process where multiple debts are combined into one debt, possibly reducing the interest and amount of the total monthly payment, but not reducing the total amount owed.
  • What is difference between secured and unsecured debt? Secured debt is money owed that has collateral which can be taken back by the creditor if you fail to make the required payments. This is usually items such as a home mortgage, car loan, or a boat loan. Some credit card debt can be secured debt, such as those used to obtain furniture, appliances, and computers. Unsecured debt is made up of most credit cards, medical bills, and personal loans, which have no collateral attached to it.
  • How long will the process take? Chapter 7 proceedings generally take four to five months. For a Chapter 13 filing, you will need to complete a three to five year payment plan before your remaining debt will be discharged.

Contact us online or call 941-584-4263 or 888-610-0968 to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our lawyers to find out if bankruptcy is the right option for you. Evening and Saturday morning appointments are available upon request.