Albion, Michigan, Bankruptcy Attorney 

Taking on debt is a normal part of twenty-first-century life. However, when aggressive interest rates and life struggles cause debt to become overwhelming, the burden can feel impossible to manage. If your debt has become the biggest problem in your life, it might be time to consider bankruptcy as a possible way forward. In many cases, bankruptcy can provide much-needed financial relief and allow you to make a fresh start.

The Michigan bankruptcy attorneys at Marrs & Terry understand how challenging life can feel when you are under the weight of crushing debt. Our legal team is here to evaluate your options and guide you on the path back to financial health. If bankruptcy is the most effective option for your situation, we will give you the advocacy and support you need at every step of the process. Contact us today for an initial case review with a bankruptcy attorney serving Albion, Michigan.

Bankruptcy Explained

Under federal bankruptcy law, eligible parties with unmanageable debts can undergo a court-supervised process, allowing them to address their financial issues while being protected from collection efforts. The process may involve liquidating assets to pay down debts or creating a repayment plan that allows them to make payments to their creditors over a number of years. Bankruptcy allows those who are struggling financially to have a fresh start while giving some creditors an opportunity to receive payments on the debts they are owed.

If you are considering filing for bankruptcy, it is crucial to remember that it will not solve all your financial problems overnight. You must consider the short- and long-term consequences before you file, such as the fact that the bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for many years. Nevertheless, it might give you the best opportunity to help you rebuild your financial situation and credit score in the longer term.

Benefits of Filing for Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy can offer many legal benefits and protections while you take steps to resolve your debts and get your financial house in order. These benefits include the following.

Automatic Stay

When a debtor files for bankruptcy, the court issues an automatic stay on efforts to collect debt from them. Under this stay, creditors are largely prevented from continuing debt collection efforts such as:

  • Sending debt collection letters
  • Making phone calls to the debtor
  • Filing a lawsuit against the debtor
  • Foreclosing on or repossessing the debtor’s property

Creditors who wish to engage in collection efforts during bankruptcy must seek court approval. If not, they may face legal penalties for violating the stay.

Debt Discharge

At the conclusion of a bankruptcy case, the court can order the discharge of many outstanding debts. The debtor will then have no further legal obligation to pay these debts, and creditors are not permitted to engage in further collection efforts. This discharge of debts can permit the individual to reclaim their financial well-being.

Maintaining Ownership of Assets

Certain types of bankruptcy filings permit a debtor to maintain ownership and control of their assets. A “debtor-in-possession” can keep their home or vehicle rather than turn them over to a bankruptcy trusty.

Bankruptcy Options for Individuals

There are two main types of bankruptcy available to individual consumers: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is sometimes also called “liquidation bankruptcy.” In this type of proceeding, the debtor will “liquidate” (sell) their property as a means of generating funds to pay back their creditors. Individuals who file for Chapter 7 may be eligible to keep some exempt property covered under state or federal bankruptcy law. A bankruptcy trustee will be in charge of selling the individual’s non-exempt property and paying the proceeds to the creditors in accordance with the provisions of the Bankruptcy Code. Once the trustee has done so, the bankruptcy court will order the discharge of the debtor’s outstanding eligible debt.

In order to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, individuals must pass a means test. The test is designed to determine whether the person has enough income to repay their debts over time. If their income is too high, they may need to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy rather than Chapter 7.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is also sometimes called “wage earner’s” bankruptcy. In this type of proceeding, the debtor will create a plan to pay down their debts over three or five years. While the individual can propose their own plan, their creditors also have the option of making an alternative proposition. Ultimately, it is up to the bankruptcy court to determine which plan to approve.

Under Chapter 13, the filer will surrender their disposable income to a bankruptcy trustee, who will, in turn, disburse the monies to the individual’s creditors according to the terms of the agreement. Upon completion of the Chapter 13 plan, the debtor’s remaining eligible debt may be discharged.

Chapter 13 has some advantages over Chapter 7, including the possibility of keeping possession of their home or car by getting up to date with mortgage or car payments or restructuring secured loans.

Individuals are eligible for Chapter 13 if their combined unsecured and secured debt is less than $2.75 million.

Why Choose Marrs & Terry As Your Bankruptcy Attorneys?

Filing for bankruptcy is a decision that should not be made lightly. It can be complex, time-consuming, and full of potential pitfalls. It is essential to work with an experienced and skilled legal representative who can make the process more effective, efficient, and transparent.

While you have many choices in bankruptcy attorneys serving Albion, Michigan, choosing the right legal team can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. The professionals at Marrs & Terry have served debtors in Calhoun County and beyond for more than 20 years. Here are a few of the reasons why so many past clients have trusted us with their cases.

Our Experience

Our bankruptcy attorneys have many decades of combined legal experience, giving us profound insight into bankruptcy law. This allows us to provide individualized legal solutions to help you reach your goals. We have a proven record of success and have helped many Michiganders in positions like yours recover their financial health.

Our Transparency

You have the right to expect complete honesty and transparency from your bankruptcy attorney. We are committed to speaking frankly and openly with our clients rather than sugarcoating issues or telling you what we think you want to hear. We will be upfront with you about your options and prospects so that you can make informed choices—but we will respect the fact that the final decision is yours.

Our Results-Oriented Approach

Our lawyers have a reputation for compassion and understanding. We will listen attentively to your story so we can understand your needs and goals. We will then develop a plan and work tirelessly to help you achieve these goals.

Contact Marrs & Terry Today for Your Initial Case Evaluation

The experienced team with Marrs & Terry understands how challenging life can become under the crushing weight of debt. We want to be the solution. Our bankruptcy attorneys serving Albion County, Michigan, have the legal insights and skills to help you overcome these challenges. You do not have to let your debt define your life. Contact us today for a confidential consultation to learn more about how we can help you.