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What is the means test?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

In 2005, Congress implemented the means test as a requirement for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The means test requires Chapter 7 debtors to earn below a specified amount of income to be eligible.

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Do all debts get discharged in Chapter 7?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

Most unsecured debts are discharged in Chapter 7. Unsecured debts are loans without collateral, such as credit cards and medical bills.

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Will I lose my home in bankruptcy?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

Homestead property (primary residence) is an exempt (protected) asset in Chapter 7. Therefore, you may not have to forfeit your home as a condition of the bankruptcy case.

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Can I keep my car in Chapter 7?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

Bankruptcy law provides exemptions to help protect a car’s equity. You may also be able to reduce the balance owed without sacrificing the car or other assets.

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Is the bankruptcy trustee a judge?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

No, the trustee does not serve in the same capacity as a judge. The trustee will have some authority over the administration of the case but does not have the authority to issue judicial orders.

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How long does Chapter 7 take?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

Chapter 7 bankruptcy usually takes 90 – 120 days to complete. At the conclusion of the case, the borrower should receive a discharge of debt. The discharge releases the borrower from personal liablity for the debt.

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Will the automatic stay stop a foreclosure?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

Creditors will not be able to pursue any collection actions while the stay is in effect. Therefore, all phone calls, lawsuits, garnishments, and other collection activities must immediately stop. The automatic stay even stops garnishments and foreclosure auctions already scheduled to occur.

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Do I need a lawyer for Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

Bankruptcy law does not require you to hire an attorney for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. However, it is highly recommended to obtain an attorney. Without full knowledge of the law, you may encounter significant pitfalls. For instance, you may be accused of fraudulent transfers, denied a discharge of debt, and be forced to sell assets.

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Who is the bankruptcy trustee?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

The trustee plays a vital role in most bankruptcy cases. The trustee is an impartial party appointed to administer the case and liquidate the debtor’s nonexempt assets.

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Is there a trustee in both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy?

By Florida Law Advisers, P.A. |

Yes, a trustee is appointed in both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 cases. However, the duties of the trustee will vary between the two types of bankruptcy.

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