Bankruptcy Case Filing
Chapter 7 - Liquidation:
Chapter 7 is the quickest way to get a fresh start. Chapter 7 looks to your current assets to see if you are eligible for a discharge of your debt. California law protects much of your property and many times protects everything you own.
Chapter 13 - Repayment Plans:
Chapter 13 looks to your income and sets up a repayment plan for part of your debt - at the end of the plan you receive a discharge for some, if not all of your remaining debt.
Chapter "20" - Combination:
Chapter “20” is actually a combination of Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. It can be useful where you need the benefit of a discharge to help your current income and also need the powers granted by filing for a chapter 13 to catch up on past due debt and strip off liens.
Home Equity Lines of Credit, "HELOCs" are a loan tied to the value of your house. It's like your mortgage, but wasn't used to buy the home. Many only required interest to be paid on the loan for the first ten years, and many are set to reset, requiring payments of the amount borrowed resulting in monthly payments that are too high to handle on your own.
The Automatic Stay:
The automatic stay is the court order that protects most individuals during their bankruptcy. The stay requires creditors to stop most actions to collect on debts during the bankruptcy. Creditors that violate this court order may be forced by the court to pay damages for their wrongful actions.
The Discharge Order:
The discharge order protects individuals after the bankruptcy case. The discharge order stops creditors from collecting upon the debts that were included in the bankruptcy. Creditors that violate this court order may be held in contempt of court.
Some debts are not dischargeable in bankruptcy and a creditor may file a lawsuit in your bankruptcy to have the court determine the debt will not be discharged. When this occurs, it pays to have an experienced bankruptcy litigator on your side to handle the complexities of a lawsuit, and the nuances of bankruptcy law.
Rule 3002.1 - Notice of Mortgage Payment Change Litigation:
In a Chapter 13, your mortgage lender is required to give you notice ahead of time to any changes to you mortgage during your plan. If they don't, they're not entitled to those payment increases and violating the automatic stay. These actions can be brought after your case is over to get back money that your lender wrongly took from you.