Anyone who needs debt relief can pursue bankruptcy, and most people compare the two main branches before choosing one. Many people also compare the benefits of these branches before deciding and filing. If you are leaning towards Chapter 7, you might want to talk to your attorney about the requirements. When you file, you are required to do some things. Here are three requirements that you might have to complete if you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
1. Attend a Court Hearing
One of the main requirements you have when filing for Chapter 7 is going to a court hearing. A court hearing is always required in Chapter 7 cases, and the courts call this a Meeting of the Creditors. You can expect the meeting to occur within three to four weeks of your filing date. The meeting can be somewhat intimidating, as you must meet with a trustee at a bankruptcy court. The good news is that you will probably need only one court hearing instead of many, and your attorney will join you at the meeting. Your lawyer gives you advice while you are there and helps you prepare for the meeting by explaining what to expect.
2. Complete Two Credit Courses
The second requirement of Chapter 7 is completing two-credit courses. Chapter 7 bankruptcy helps people by providing debt forgiveness for their qualifying debts. If you owe $15,000 in credit card bills when filing for this chapter, the court might approve forgiveness of these debts, leaving you with a zero balance. To receive debt forgiveness, you must achieve all the requirements of Chapter 7, and completing two credit courses is one of these. These courses teach you how to manage your money, save money, and avoid falling into debt in the future.
3. Surrender Assets the Trustee Requests
The third thing you might have to do is to surrender your assets to the trustee. If the trustee finds that you have assets that the court can seize and sell, they will ask for them. You must hand them over if they ask. The good news is that many people who file never have to give up any assets they own. Some people do, though.
When using Chapter 7, you must work with a lawyer and follow his or her instructions. The process does not take as long as Chapter 13, but it might still take six to nine months. If you have questions about any part of it, talk to a bankruptcy attorney in your area.