One of many schedules that an individual debtor will fileis a schedule of "exempt" property. The Bankruptcy Code allows an individual debtor (4) to defend some property from the claims of creditors because it is exempt under federal bankruptcy law or under the laws of the debtor's home state. 11 U.S.C. - 522(b). Many states have made good use of a provision in the Bankruptcy Code that enables each state to adopt a unique exemption law in place of the federal exceptions. In other jurisdictions, the individual debtor gets the option of choosing between a federal package of exemptions or the exemptions obtainable under state law. Thus, whether certain property will be exempt and can be kept by the debtor is usually a question of state law. The debtor should consult a legal professional to figure out the exemptions attainable in the state where the debtor lives.
Submitting a petition under chapter 7 "automatically stays" (stops) almost all collection options against the debtor or debtor's property. 11 U.S.C. - 362. But filing the petition wouldn't stay particular kinds of decisions listed under 11 U.S.C. - 362(b), and the stay can be effective just for a few days in certain situations. The stay originates by process of law and involves no judicial action. In the event that the stay is in effect, creditors most often might not trigger or resume legal cases, wage garnishments, or calls demanding payments. The bankruptcy clerk gives notice of the bankruptcy case to all creditors whose names and addresses are provided by the debtor.
In between 20 and 40 days once the petition is sent in, the case trustee (described below) will hold a conference of creditors. In case the U.S. trustee or bankruptcy administrator (5) schedules the meeting at a place that does not have regular U.S. trustee or bankruptcy administrator staffing, the meeting might be held no greater than 60 days after the order for relief. Fed. R. Bankr. P. 2003(a). During this meeting, the trustee puts the debtor under oath, and the trustee and creditors will seek advice. The debtor has to attend the conference and answer questions on the subject of the debtor's financial affairs and property. 11 U.S.C. - 343. If a couple have filed a joint request, they both must be present before the creditors' meeting and answer questions. Within 10 days of the creditors' meeting, the U.S. trustee will report to the court if the case is required to be presumed to become an abuse underneath the means test described in 11 U.S.C. - 704(b).
It is required for the debtor to cooperate with the trustee and to give any financial documents or written documents that the trustee asks. The Bankruptcy Code demands the trustee to ask the debtor questions at the meeting of creditors to ensure that the debtor is aware of the potential risks of seeking a discharge in bankruptcy like the effect on credit score, a chance to file a petition under a totally different chapter, the result of receiving a discharge, along with the effect of reaffirming a debt. Some trustees provide written information and facts on these topics at or prior to the meeting so the debtor is aware of this information. As a way to preserve their independent judgment, bankruptcy judges are disallowed from attending the meeting of creditors. 11 U.S.C. - 341(c).
In order to accord the debtor complete relief, the Bankruptcy Code facilitates the debtor to convert a chapter 7 case to a case under chapter 11, 12, or 13 (6) given that the debtor is entitled to be a debtor under the new chapter. However, a condition of the debtor's voluntary conversion is that the case has not previously been converted to chapter 7 from another chapter. 11 U.S.C. -- 706(a). Thus, the debtor is not authorized to transform the case frequently from one chapter to another.
I am NOT a lawyer and if you are condidering filing for bankruptcy in South Jersey bankruptcy, find a South Jersey bankruptcy law firm. A bankruptcy lawyer could give you the help you need. No matter where you live meet with a Bankruptcy Lawyer before taking any action.