Bankruptcy isn’t for everyone. However, for some people, it can be a great option for starting over financially and managing out-of-control debt. What is bankruptcy, and how can you find bankruptcy help? If you are facing a mountain of debt, bankruptcy attorneys are available to help you determine whether this option is right for you financially. 

What is Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy was designed to help people achieve a fresh start when they are overwhelmed by unmanageable debt. Through a legal process, you may be able to relieve part or even all of what you owe to lenders and creditors. If you cannot meet your obligations to pay, bankruptcy can be your best option for receiving help and starting over. 

Many businesses file for bankruptcy, but it can happen to individuals as well. There are two major kinds of bankruptcy, known as “chapters,” that apply to individuals: 

  • Chapter 7 bankruptcy, in which all or some of the debt is discharged completely. 
  • Chapter 13 bankruptcy, in which a payment plan is created to help the debtor repay all or some of their debt. 

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is known as liquidation because it requires that some of your debt is repaid through relinquishing liquid assets–possessions that can be converted into cash. Liquid assets include vehicles such as cars, real estate, and any balance in your savings or checking account. Some people file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy even though they qualify for Chapter 7, so they can keep their liquid assets.

Can Bankruptcy Help Me? 

An attorney in a printed shirt talks with a client in a black blazer, providing bankruptcy help

There is a negative stigma to bankruptcy, as it does stay on your credit report for several years and impacts your ability to be approved for future loans or credit cards. However, bankruptcy can really help certain people. Whether filing for bankruptcy puts you on a manageable payment plan or helps you completely discharge your debt, there are a variety of ways that bankruptcy can actually improve your quality of life. It can:

  • Help you eliminate debt such as credit cards. 
  • Halt repossession or foreclosure so that you can keep your house or other liquid assets.
  • Stop wage garnishments (when your employer withholds your earnings).
  • Stop your utilities from being shut off or other debt collection actions that may impact your quality of living. 

More than anything, bankruptcy provides an opportunity for a fresh start. Additionally, bankruptcy helps your overall financial management because you undergo credit counseling as part of the process. You will learn how to manage debt in the future better. 

If you’re asking, “Can bankruptcy help me?” The best thing to do is seek a professional opinion on what your options are and whether bankruptcy is right for you.

How Can I Find Bankruptcy Help? 

Bankruptcy laws can be challenging to navigate. It’s a good idea to get advice from a bankruptcy attorney, so you can make an informed decision about filing for bankruptcy and can file accurately for the type that’s right for you. If you’re in the Chicago, IL area and have questions about bankruptcy help, contact Schottler Law to schedule your free 30-minute consultation today. A bankruptcy attorney will help determine your options in this difficult time.

Mark Schottler is a Chicagoland attorney with over 20 years of experience working both in probate and estate planning law and in real estate law. He puts his extensive knowledge on these subjects into easily consumable articles that will help and advise the public. Mark Schottler has a passion for probate and uses this to create relevant articles that are informative and entertaining. *While these posts may detail general legal issues, it is not legal advice. Use of this site does not create an attorney-client relationship.