We Can Help You Deal With the Overwhelming Burden of Debt
If the bills are adding up and creditor calls are becoming all too common, you may be in a serious financial crisis that could lead to bankruptcy. Falling into debt can feel like a frightful plummet, but the landing does not have to be a violent crash. Here at the Law Office of Jack G. Lezman, PLLC, we have an experienced team of legal professionals that really do care about your situation. Together, we can lift the stress of your financial burden off your shoulders, as well as help you breathe easier again. Everyone deserves that second chance, and you may be able to get it if you file for bankruptcy. If you are in the middle of a financial crisis and live in Charlotte, NC or any of its outlying counties, Attorney Lezman wants to help you!
How Can Our Charlotte Bankruptcy Lawyer Help You?
Bankruptcy is not the painful failure that many people perceive it to be. It does not have to end with you losing your house. Furthermore, your credit does not have to be tarnished for the rest of your life. With the right preparation, bankruptcy can be the perfect solution for your difficult financial situation.
Areas of practice that Attorney Lezman can assist you with include the following:
- Alternatives to Bankruptcy
- Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
- Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
- Debt Consolidation
- Wage Garnishment
- Creditor Harassment
The helpful attorneys at the Law Office of Jack G. Lezman, PLLC are well-versed in both the complicated and intimidating procedures required to have a successful bankruptcy case. Moreover, they want to be there to help you land on your feet. With more than 18 years of experience and plenty of positive client testimonials and winning cases, we are the right choice for you if you need help determining whether or not bankruptcy is right for you. Call our office in Charlotte anytime for more information or a free case evaluation.
What Is Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy is a legal process that discharges certain types of debt. Unfortunately, in the past, some people delayed filing bankruptcy due to social stigma. But it’s not shameful to file for bankruptcy.
Many hard-working Americans become unable to pay their bills after a job loss, unexpected disability, or a divorce. In these situations, bankruptcy is the first step towards rebuilding your financial future.
There are two primary types of personal bankruptcy in the United States, as follows:
- Chapter 7 bankruptcy: Sometimes called a “liquidation bankruptcy.” You sell your nonexempt assets in exchange for the discharge of your debts. If you do not have nonexempt assets, your creditors receive nothing in exchange for the discharge – in fact, most Chapter 7 bankruptcies filed do not involve selling any assets. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy takes roughly six months to complete.
- Chapter 13 bankruptcy: Rather than a liquidating property, you enter a repayment plan with your creditors. You typically have up to five years to pay your debts under this plan.
Each chapter has its own distinct advantages and disadvantages. A Charlotte NC bankruptcy attorney will help you decide which option is best suited to your situation.
Why Should I File for Bankruptcy?
While there are many benefits to filing bankruptcy, bankruptcy may not be for everyone. You cannot discharge certain debts during bankruptcy, such as unpaid child support, unpaid alimony, and most student loans. Before you file bankruptcy, you should consider all of your options. For example, you might be able to restructure or settle certain debts directly with your creditors. Or, you might benefit from debt counseling.
However, many Kentucky residents benefit significantly from bankruptcy. If you are overburdened by dischargeable debts (such as medical bills, personal loans, and credit card debt), a Charlotte NC bankruptcy lawyer can help you end the harassing phone calls, collections lawsuits, and wage garnishment. And, once you are debt-free, you can start rebuilding your credit score and finances.
Do I Qualify for Bankruptcy?
To qualify for bankruptcy, you must meet strict legal requirements. Each chapter has its own eligibility criteria:
- Chapter 7 eligibility: You must meet the “means test.” In other words, you must show that your assets are below a state-specific threshold.
- Chapter 13 eligibility: You must show that your debts are below a different threshold. Since Chapter 13 involves a repayment plan, the bankruptcy court must believe that you can actually repay your debts.
These eligibility calculations can become very complicated. If you need help assessing your eligibility, contact a Charlotte NC bankruptcy attorney. A lawyer can help you evaluate your finances and tailor a debt relief solution that meets your needs and long-term goals.
Understanding the Bankruptcy Process
To file for bankruptcy in Charlotte NC, you (or your Charlotte NC bankruptcy lawyer) must file a series of documents with the United States Bankruptcy Court in Paducah. These documents do the following:
- Indicate what type of relief you are seeking (Chapter 7 or Chapter 13),
- Identify both your creditors and debts,
- Discuss your income and assets, and
- Present a proposed repayment plan (if you are filing under Chapter 13).
Drafting a bankruptcy petition is exacting and detail-oriented work. If you do not list all of your assets and income, the court might deny your petition. In addition, the bankruptcy court can only discharge the debts listed in your petition.
Once you file your bankruptcy petition and supporting documents, the bankruptcy court will appoint a trustee. The trustee will then oversee your bankruptcy and either liquidate your assets or review your repayment plan.
Depending on whether you are filing under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, the actual bankruptcy process will vary. Your Charlotte NC bankruptcy attorney will help you navigate the process: negotiating with the trustee, attending court hearings, and advocating on your behalf. If you are unrepresented, however, you must do all of this on your own.
The Means Test and Determining Eligibility for Chapter 7
One of the first things that you will have to do in order to file for bankruptcy in North Carolina is to take the means test. The test is designed to determine if you should pursue Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Essentially, the test determines if you are eligible to file Chapter 7. If it can be determined that your income is low enough, or that your financial situation is dire enough, then you can pursue Chapter 7. Chapter 7 allows you to liquidate non-exempt assets in order to satisfy your creditors. If you fail the means test, you may be eligible to file Chapter 13 instead.
Walking You Through the Process of Debt Consolidation
Debt consolidation is another option, instead of filing bankruptcy, for debt relief. In effect, you can take all the debts you owe and lump them into one location, effectively consolidating all debts into one lump sum. You can then make payments on the lump sum until the debt is paid off.
Basically, a debt consolidator is going to purchase all of your loans and in return, you get a fixed interest rate and a manageable repayment plan. It’s an excellent option for those who want to avoid bankruptcy. A Charlotte debt consolidation attorney can help you through each step of the process. We can also help secure a repayment plan that fits your budget. However, debt consolidation may not be an option for everyone. Your attorney can help you determine whether this is a good choice for you, given your individual circumstances.
Defending You Against Creditor Harassment
Are you receiving non-stop phone calls day in and day out? Are you receiving threatening letters? Or are creditors calling your family, friends, and neighbors? If so, you do have rights. There are limits to what creditors can legally do. A Charlotte bankruptcy attorney can help.
The law is specific on the type of behavior that is prohibited to creditors. While laws will vary from one state to the next, if a creditor is harassing you, or their conduct rises to the level of legal harassment you may have cause to sue. At the Law Office of Jack G. Lezman, PLLC, we commit ourselves to protecting your rights. Creditors who are taking illegal action should be help accountable. We can help you understand your rights and put an end to illegal creditor harassment.
Protecting Your Home From Foreclosure
Even in today’s market, foreclosures are all too common. But if the bank wants to evict you from your home, or you believe that your debt problems are heading in that direction, there are a number of things that a Charlotte bankruptcy can do to help protect your most valuable asset. While foreclosure defense may not be a viable option for everyone, we can help you manage your debt and thereby ensure a sustainable future for you and your family.
We know that each case is unique. We’ll first take time to evaluate your situation, analyze the options available to you, and choose a strategy best suited to your goals. If your goal is to keep your home, we can help you with a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy with that goal in mind.
Consult With a Charlotte NC Bankruptcy Attorney
A Charlotte NC bankruptcy attorney can help you craft a personalized debt relief strategy. Due to the complexities of the bankruptcy system, it is very difficult to handle either a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 filing on your own. At the Law Office of Jack G. Lezman, PLLC, we help our clients file for bankruptcy as well as rebuild their futures. We are compassionate, detail-oriented, and determined litigators. Contact us for a consultation today.