Q. How will bankruptcy affect my credit?

A. Credit reporting companies list your bankruptcy for ten years. Notwithstanding, most people are able to obtain credit and borrow money much sooner than this.

Q. Does my spouse have to file bankruptcy with me?

A. No.

Q. Should I gift property to family members or friends before I file?

A. No. Such transfers might be considered fraudulent.

Q. Do I have to list all my creditors?

A. Yes. There is no such thing as a “medical bankruptcy.” If you are afraid of losing medical services if you list your doctor or clinic, we will advise you as to what you can do.

Q. Do I have to list all of my assets?

A. Yes.

Q. Will filing bankruptcy prevent debt collectors from harassing me?

A. Yes. Immediately upon filing and automatic stay (injunction) goes into effect preventing creditors from contacting you in any manner without court authority.

Q. Can I keep my house and car?

A. Yes. If these items are subject to a mortgage or other type lien, you will have to keep making payments to the lien holder to keep the property.

Q. Who Is A Bankruptcy Trustee And Will I Meet The Trustee?

A Trustee in bankruptcy is a person who is appointed by the United States Department of Justice or in some cases, by the creditors involved in a bankruptcy case. When you file for bankruptcy, a bankruptcy estate is created. A bankruptcy trustee will be assigned to your case. One of the Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee’s jobs is to administer your bankruptcy case. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the trustee is mostly interested in what you own and what property you claim as exempt. The bankruptcy trustee does not represent you or your creditors. The trustee represents the bankruptcy estate. It is the trustee’s job to evaluate the nonexempt property, convert it to cash, and use that money to pay creditors who have valid claims.

In a Chapter 13 (Reorganization) the trustee is responsible for receiving the debtor’s monthly payments and distributing those funds proportionally to the debtor’s creditors pursuant to a Chapter 13 Plan.