Frequently Asked Questions About Filing for Chapter 7 & Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Michigan
Q: How much does a bankruptcy cost?
A: The cost of a bankruptcy differs in every case. After a free initial consultation to discuss the issues you are facing and your specific goals, you will be quoted a fee for your case. The Chapter 7 filing fee is $335, the Chapter 13 filing fee is $310.
Q: Is everyone I know going to find out that I filed for bankruptcy?
A: Probably not. Only family members and friends to whom you owe a debt will receive notice of your case. Your family and friends are most likely not going to find out that you filed for bankruptcy.
Q: Will I ever be able to buy a house or a car again?
A: Yes! Your credit will begin to be restored soon after filing for bankruptcy. After a case, any debts you discharged will be removed from your credit report and any debts you kept long-term, such as a mortgage or a car loan, will remain on your credit report. By changing your debt-to-income ratio, which the credit reporting agencies use to determine your score, you will see your credit improve quickly. Most consumers find that they will be able to finance a house with an FHA loan 2 years after receiving a Chapter 7 discharge.
Q: I made my daughter an authorized user on my credit card. Is this going to impact her credit?
A: No. Any authorized users on your lines of credit are using credit attached to your social security number, not their own. If you have a true co-signer on a debt to be included in your case, they may be liable for the debt.
Q: Can I pay for my bankruptcy in installments?
A: No. As your bankruptcy counsel, we must receive a retainer and the court’s filing fee in order to file your case. We cannot list ourselves as a creditor in your case, so our retainer must be paid in full before we file. We understand that saving the funds to retain quality legal counsel can be a challenge; for this reason, we do not determine a fee in your case until we evaluate your circumstances during your initial free consultation.
Q: I have a foreclosure sale scheduled in just a few days’ time. Is it too late to file a bankruptcy to stop this from taking place?
A: No. If you need additional time to gather your paperwork but need to file a case immediately, we can likely file your case on an emergency basis. This provides an additional two weeks to file the remainder of your schedules and statements.
Q: I am going to need a new car soon, but need to file for Chapter 13 now. Will I be able to get approval to do this while in a case?
A: Yes. Obtaining a new lease or financed vehicle is easy to do while in Chapter 13. You can also obtain permission to refinance a mortgage on your home or enter into a loan modification agreement while in Chapter 13.
Q: My son will be going to college; will this impact my ability to co-sign for his student loans?
A: No. The Bankruptcy Code prohibits any government or private lender from denying loans to individuals on account of their involvement as a debtor in a bankruptcy case, or their association with someone who is a debtor in a bankruptcy case.