Some property can be protected while filing a bankruptcy case through a Wayne bankruptcy attorney. Let’s look at lawsuits for injuries. Workers compensation is 100% protected except for if there is a third party claim. Third party claims turn into a regular injury suit and $15,000 is the protection on that. Boats are property but I haven’t had anybody with a boat recently other than a little fishing boat which no one wants to sell. Animals are personal property. People are going to want to chuckle here but you’ve got to put down a dog or cat on your bankruptcy petition. The Trustees are looking for cows, horses, cattle; something of significant value. The same bankruptcy petition is used throughout the country so it has to apply in all situations.
Now this bankruptcy advice involves. The in-take form and it becomes part of our file that I never throw out. When I close out the file, this stays because remember, this is something that the debtor fills out first. You go through it with them and kind of help complete it, but they fill it out first so they can never come back and say I told you about something and you didn’t put it on the bankruptcy petition. No, you didn’t. See the no here? You told me you didn’t have it. So, it’s just our protection.
Moving on to marital status. Marital status, single no problem; divorce no problem; widowed no problem. If they are married, that brings in some issues here. It used to be that if you were married to somebody and you wanted to claim bankruptcy, it didn’t matter what your spouse made. So if a woman wanted to file bankruptcy many years ago and her spouse made $100,000 a year, they couldn’t look to what he made. That was separate. She would qualify on her own. The law changed. Now they look at the total household income even though one of the spouses isn’t even filing. The rationale here is if husband, in this example that I’m giving you, is a breadwinner like he is in this example that I am giving you. The court is basically saying you don’t qualify for Chapter 7. Your spouse can help you out and pay your bills. You are one economic entity if you are a married couple.
Your Chicago bankruptcy lawyer will be able to advise you prior to filing. It may be that you should file a joint Chapter 13 to avoid a Trustee’s motion to dismiss the case. That would be the situation if the income of the parties exceeded the expenses of the parties. The attorney will guide you in that determination. You simply have to provide detailed information with regard to income.