San Diego Bankruptcy Lawyer
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a rapid increase in unemployment. In just one month, San Diego's unemployment rate soared from 4% to 27%. While some employees have returned to work, many jobs have been eliminated.
For most working families, unemployment compensation is a poor substitute for wages. The 10% of San Diego workers who earn income from the gig economy are often ineligible for unemployment benefits. Inadequate income leads to a debt crisis.
Unemployed homeowners are wondering how to make their mortgage and car loan payments. Small businesses are closing their doors, leaving business owners with a stack of unpaid bills. Bill collectors from medical providers and credit card companies add to the stress of families burdened by crushing debt.
Bankruptcy offers debt relief solutions for individuals and small business owners in San Diego. People who have a reliable source of income can often save their homes and vehicles by filing a chapter 13 debt repayment plan. Small business owners who are ready to abandon a failed business, individuals with no steady income, and debtors who don't own a home might opt to wipe out their debt with a chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Attorney Michael Rehm can help San Diego residents find a solution to their debt problems. Planning in advance can help a debtor maximize the benefit of filing either a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Avoid a San Diego Foreclosure with a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Homeowners who have missed too many mortgage payments are at risk of foreclosure. Individuals who miss car loan payments are at risk of repossession. Fortunately, debtors who have a regular source of income, including unemployment compensation, may be able to save their secured property with a chapter 13 plan.
Debtors who file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy make a budget that covers their monthly expenses, including their current payments to secured creditors. Payments to credit card companies, healthcare providers, and other unsecured creditors are excluded from the budget. Monthly income in excess of the budget is used to catch up on delinquent payments to secured creditors.
When the Chapter 13 bankruptcy is filed, foreclosures and repossessions must cease. At the end of a three-to-five-year period, debtors are current on their secured debt. Most unsecured debt is wiped out. Debtors may also be entitled to avoid eviction if they file the bankruptcy before eviction proceedings begin.
Put an End to Debt Collection in San Diego with a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
With the exception of child support and a few other debts that cannot be discharged, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy wipes out all debt. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is available to most debtors who have below-average incomes.
Debtors who file under Chapter 7 must surrender secured property, but if the lender sells the property for less than the amount the debtor owes, the debtor is not held responsible for paying the deficiency. When homes lose value in a recession, Chapter 7 protects debtors from deficiency judgments.
Debtors must also surrender property of unusual value to the bankruptcy trustee, even if has not been used to secure a debt. Most property, however, is exempt and will be retained by the debtor after debts are discharged.
To learn whether a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy provides the best debt relief solution for you, contact San Diego Bankruptcy Attorney Michael Rehm at (619) 787-3456.
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