The United States Bankruptcy Code, sets the qualifications for who can file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. They are:

  • No prior bankruptcy in the past 6-8 years (depending on the type of bankruptcy previously filed)
  • Pass the means test

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Process

Step 1: Consultation

  • Normally 45-60 min. FREE consultation

Step 2: Bring in Paperwork

  • Meeting where you bring in worksheets and paperwork
  • Must have taken credit counseling course within 6 months of filing

Step 3: Review & Sign

  • Review, sign and file paperwork

Step 4: Assigned a Bankruptcy Trustee

  • The bankruptcy trustee administers your estate, will examine your paperwork, and either presides at and/or ask questions at the meeting of creditors.

Step 5: Automatic Stay Goes into Effect
This stay halts creditors from taking further action to collect against you, including:

  • Beginning or continuing law suits and/or proceedings against you
  • Creating, perfecting, or enforcing a lien against your property
  • Contacting you by phone or mail
  • Foreclosing on your home
  • Repossessing your automobile or other property
  • Garnishing your wages
  • Attaching/Levying your bank accounts

Step 6: 341 Meeting
The creditor meeting is a hearing that your bankruptcy trustee holds where he or she asks questions about your property, inheritance, potential lawsuits, financial circumstances, prior owned businesses, money owed to you and bankruptcy paperwork. It is usually the only time you have a meeting. This is not court and there is no bankruptcy judge present. Your bankruptcy attorney sits with you at the table. Creditors have the right to attend the meeting, ask questions and get documents signed. Creditors usually don’t attend. Recent hearings have been over the phone because of COVID.

  • Approximately six weeks after filing
  • 5-10 minutes after case called
  • Asked questions by bankruptcy trustee to verify information
  • You might receive reaffirmation agreements from creditors asking you to reaffirm the debt. If you are going to keep your home or car, your bankruptcy attorney may recommend signing these agreements.

Step 7: Take Personal Financial Management Course Online

  • You must complete a personal financial management course before you receive your discharge.

Step 8: Discharge

  • Approximately 60 days after your 341 meeting

Best Bankruptcy Attorney Near Me

If you have questions about Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Huntsville, Decatur, Moulton, Athens, Cullman or Scottsboro, Alabama, the attorneys at Ferguson & Ferguson can help. We are here to help guide you through the process. You will work with one of our attorneys throughout the process, not secretaries or paralegals. Call 256-534-3435 or 256-350-7200.