Chang & Diamond, APC: Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney San Diego

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You work hard to raise your children and provide a stable home for them for yourself and your family. However, sometimes circumstances beyond your control threaten your security. Your financial losses can be the result of many causes—an unexpected illness or layoff has forced you to deplete your savings and rely on credit cards. Perhaps you just made too many extravagant purchases. Now you find yourself hounded by creditors with threats of car repossession or even foreclosure on your house losses, garnishments, or levees on your personal property.

When financial ruin stares you in the face with these threats to your financial security, the fear can be debilitating. But there is hope. If you live in Southern California and your financial situation has become serious, declaring Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be the answer for you. Contact Chang & Diamond, APC, in San Diego & Riverside County, California, for answers to your questions, pursuit of a brighter future, and an end to harassment. Tomorrow really can be a new day.

“Thank you for your support, understanding, and help through such a difficult time in our lives. We greatly appreciate everything that you were able to help us through.”—Stacy, San Diego

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyer in San Diego 

You work hard daily to care for yourself and your family and secure a better future. But due to circumstances beyond your control, such as an unexpected illness or layoff, you’ve had to rely on credit cards and take loans to survive.

Because you’re unable to repay your debts, you now find yourself hounded by creditors with threats of car repossession, home foreclosure, garnishments, or levees on your personal property.

If this scenario sounds familiar, you may be wondering how to get yourself out of the situation. It’s okay to be scared and worried in such circumstances. But there is hope.

When you have a crushing mountain of debt that you do not have the means to repay, filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy can offer you some latitude. It would allow you to wipe the slate clean and get a shot at rebuilding your life and finances afresh.

The bankruptcy laws in the U.S. are constantly changing. You’ll need to fulfill different requirements to have your debts discharged by the bankruptcy court. These factors contribute to making the bankruptcy process complex and challenging to navigate.

Yet, you’re expected to understand how the process works, as any mistakes in your bankruptcy petition could adversely affect its outcome. To avoid jeopardizing your chances, consider seeking professional help and guidance from a skilled bankruptcy attorney who has successfully handled similar cases.

If you’re in San Diego or elsewhere in Southern California, you don’t need to look further for legal help. Our experienced and competent bankruptcy attorneys at Chang & Diamond, APC, can represent you throughout the bankruptcy process.

We have represented clients in bankruptcy cases for over 25 years, and we have up-to-date knowledge of how the Chapter 7 bankruptcy process works. We are prepared to give your case the personal attention you deserve and work with you toward a positive, debt-free outcome.

Read further as we explain how bankruptcy under Chapter 7 works and share specific ways we could help you.

How Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Works

Chapter 7 bankruptcy refers to the bankruptcy or liquidation process prescribed by Chapter 7 of the bankruptcy code for individuals who cannot pay their debts. You can get debt relief through this process regardless of the amount you owe. 

The downside is that you may lose some of your assets in the process. You are only allowed to retain a few assets depending on the applicable bankruptcy exemptions in your state. The bankruptcy trustee assigned to your case is required by bankruptcy law to collect and liquidate all other (non-exempt) assets and use the amount realized to pay off your debts. 

California has two classes of bankruptcy exemptions, known as the 703 and 704 exemptions. These exemptions cover different kinds of real and personal property.

If you intend to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, an experienced bankruptcy attorney can help you determine which one applies in your bankruptcy case to mitigate your asset loss.

Stopping Creditor Harassment With Chapter 7 Bankruptcy – The “Automatic Stay” Advantage 

Filing bankruptcy under Chapter 7 can also help you stop creditor harassment and threats of foreclosure. Generally, once you file your bankruptcy petition, all creditor actions to recover the debts must stop.

From that moment, every creditor becomes subject to the bankruptcy proceedings and can only recover their debt through the process, except if the bankruptcy court permits otherwise.


Determining Your Eligibility 

To qualify for this type of bankruptcy, you need to show that you do not have the means to repay your debts and that your current monthly income is below your state median income.

For instance, the U.S. Census Bureau estimates the median household income in California as $84,097 yearly. If your monthly income is less than the monthly equivalent of that figure, you may qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

You could still qualify for this kind of bankruptcy if you earn more than that. But you’ll need to take and pass a means test to show that your filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy is not intended to abuse the process. The means test measures your current monthly income, monthly living expenses, and the amount you have left after your expenses (also called disposable income).

If your means test results show that you have very little disposable income each month and you’ll be unable to repay your debts from there, then you’ll likely qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

If your disposable income is enough to sustain the repayment of your debts over time, you may not be eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. In those circumstances, you could consider filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy allowing you to restructure and repay your debts within three to five years. Our San Diego bankruptcy lawyer can explain the differences between Chapter 7 vs. Chapter 13 bankruptcy to help you decide.


What Debts Cannot Be Eliminated With Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

A successful Chapter 7 bankruptcy process discharges most of your secured and unsecured debts, including debts related to 

  • Personal loans

  • Medical bills

  • Negligence claims

  • Credit card debt

  • Leases

  • Business debts.

But some debts cannot be discharged, and you’ll need to continue paying them after bankruptcy. Those debts include court or government-imposed levies such as 

  • Alimony

  • Child support

  • Tax debts

  • Student loans.

Regardless of these outstanding debts, the discharge of most of your debt can offer significant relief from the burden of debt, giving you the opportunity to begin to rebuild your finances without the added weight.

How Our San Diego Bankruptcy Lawyers Can Help You

At Chang & Diamond, we are committed to helping you regain control of your life and get back on track with your financial goals.

Throughout our years of practice, we have helped countless clients and their families start over through bankruptcy proceedings using our in-depth knowledge of bankruptcy laws. With our help and guidance, you can rise above your suffering finances and turn your life around with small, steady steps.

Some of the specific Chapter 7 bankruptcy services we offer include the following:

  • We can examine your situation and determine your eligibility for Chapter 7 vs. Chapter 13 and help you kickstart the Chapter 7 bankruptcy process if you qualify.
  • If you’re ineligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, we can help you determine if you qualify for other forms of bankruptcy or if alternatives, such as out-of-court debt restructuring, would serve you better.
  • Our lawyers are prepared to represent you during the court hearings and compulsory creditors meetings. They can advocate for you and ensure your interests are protected at each point.
  • The bankruptcy process requires a lot of documentation. Document preparation is an essential part of our services. You can trust us to ensure that your bankruptcy court petition and documents are in order and meet the required legal standards.

Going through bankruptcy alone could be tough. You can rely on us to hold your hand throughout the process. We can show you how to successfully and legally offload your debt burden leaving you light enough to ascend new financial heights.


Speak With a San Diego Bankruptcy Attorney at Chang & Diamond APC Today


Do not let your overwhelming debts weigh you down when there are legal ways to get out of such debts. Contact our outstanding San Diego bankruptcy attorneys to learn your options under bankruptcy law and help you get started.

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