Does analyzing your finances make you feel like you’re aboard a sinking ship? If you feel like you’re drowning in debt, then you’re not out of options. You may be debating whether filing for bankruptcy can help you regain control over your debt and life. Learn everything you need to know about the different types of bankruptcy in Missouri below. 

What You Need to Know About the Different Types of Bankruptcy

Not everyone who is struggling with debt will be able to file for bankruptcy in Missouri. Bankruptcy can help you clear some forms of debt, but not every type of debt is eligible for discharge through the bankruptcy process. Despite its shortcomings, bankruptcy is still the most effective tool for Missouri residents who are struggling to pay their bills.
 
There are two main types of bankruptcy in our state: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a good option if you don’t have any significant assets. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is usually a faster process than Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a better option for individuals who have significant assets like a home or vehicle.
 
The main difference between these two types of bankruptcy is that your debts won’t get completely discharged during a Chapter 13 bankruptcy unless you’re willing to part with your valuable assets. Instead, you’ll need to submit to a payment plan with your creditors. If you adhere to the plan, then your debts will be cleared after a period of time. Usually, this period of time lasts about three to five years. Learn more about the two types of bankruptcy here. 

What’s the Means Test for Bankruptcy in Missouri?

So, who is eligible to file for bankruptcy in Missouri? If you’re thinking of seeking a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, then you and your financial accounts will be closely examined. To determine your eligibility, you’ll need to compare your income to the average income of families or individuals in Missouri.
 
According to the Justice Department, the average income for a single earner in Missouri is $48,212. For couples, it’s $60,424.
 
If your income is less than or equal to this average, then you qualify to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you make more than average, then it’s advised you reach out to a bankruptcy lawyer to determine if you qualify or not.
 
To pass the means test, you’ll need to fill out a statement that verifies your current monthly income. Then, you’ll need to provide information about your marital status, family size, and income. Your lawyer will explain which forms you need to fill out and how to do it. 

When Should I Consider Bankruptcy?

There are a number of financial situations that may have you considering filing for bankruptcy. Here are a few scenarios in which bankruptcy would be beneficial:
 
·         When your lender is considering repossessing your vehicle
·         When your creditor has started foreclosure actions
·         Debt collectors are harassing you
·         Your utilities have been turned off
·         Your wages are being garnished, which is causing you financial hardship
 
It’s important to talk with a lawyer about your specific debts. Not all debts can be discharged through bankruptcy including student loans. Despite that, going through bankruptcy can help you settle other debts that are causing you financial strife.
 
If you qualify to file in Missouri and you’re in a situation like the ones above, then it’s time to act. Learn more about how to get started below. 

Are You Ready to Get Started?

Making the decision to file for bankruptcy isn’t easy. It also shouldn’t be taken lightly, as bankruptcy has lasting impacts on your credit score and financial status. This type of action should only be considered as a last resort if you know you won’t be able to pay off your debts.
 
If you’re considering taking the leap, then it’s important to speak with an attorney (https://www.kansascityaccidentinjuryattorneys.com/contact.cfm) before you get started on the process. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can help you decide which type of bankruptcy will benefit you the most, and they’ll also help you keep any significant assets safe during the process.
 
It’s natural to start to feel pressured to act when debt collectors won’t stop harassing you. You can rest assured knowing that once you initiate the bankruptcy process, the courts will order your lenders to cease all collection efforts. That means no more phone calls, no more in-person visits, and no more foreclosure or repossession threats.

Are You Considering Filing For Bankruptcy?

If you feel bankruptcy is the best option for your financial situation you need to speak with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our office directly at 888.348.2616 to schedule your free consultation.

James Roswold
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James Roswold is a Kansas & Missouri personal injury, workers comp, and medical malpractice attorney.