Are you seeking to file bankruptcy in Las Vegas, Nevada? If so, now is the time to consider speaking with Ballstaedt Law Firm. For years, we have been resolving debt problems of all kinds for businesses and individuals. Our firms’ focus encompasses debt-related matters; thus, we have the necessary experience and knowledge that is likely needed to find a solution that works for you. If you are ready to file bankruptcy in Las Vegas, NV, give Ballstaedt Law Firm a call.
Common Types of Bankruptcy
In general, you can choose to file in Las Vegas, NV without a lawyer. However, unless you have the legal knowledge, or possess the necessary confidence and patience typically needed to handle the process, doing things on your own is inadvisable. Without a lawyer to help you file bankruptcy in Las Vegas, you could risk losing valuable time and money. Remember, bankruptcy involves state and federal courts, and there will be many deadlines to meet, as well as documents to file. Before you do anything, you should talk with Ballstaedt Law Firm.
Chapter 7 in Las Vegas
If you choose to file for Chapter 7, you will need to take a means test in order to qualify. By filing for this type of bankruptcy, you are asking the court to relieve you of your debt, or some of it. Before the court agrees to grant this to you, all of your non-exempt assets will need to be liquidated. The proceeds from the liquidation will be used to pay off some of your debts. There are many benefits to filing for Chapter 7, including:
- You get a completely new start
- A portion, or all, of your credit card debt, medical debt, and other unsecured debt may be discharged
- You will be able to keep your future income
- There are no limitations
- There are no repayment plans
- The process takes 3-9 months
If you do not qualify for Chapter 7, you may have other options, including filing for Chapter 13 or utilizing alternative debt solutions.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy will require you, or a lawyer to develop a payment plan that consolidates all of your debt into one. The court will need to approve the plan, and it should be repaid in three to five years. In some cases, once you have paid off the plan, the remaining debt will be discharged. The benefits of filing for chapter 13 including:
- You can usually avoid foreclosure on a house
- Your credit report will show the bankruptcy for 7 years rather than 10 (applicable for chapter 7)
- Your secured debts can be rescheduled
Top Benefits of Filing Bankruptcy in Las Vegas, Nevada
- You can stop foreclosures
- You may be able to save some of your assets
- You can prevent your wages from being garnished
- You can avoid going to collections
- Lawsuits can be stopped
- Creditor harassment can be stopped
If you would like to know whether or not you should file in Las Vegas, call Ballstaedt Law Firm now.
Bankruptcy Exemptions in Nevada
If you file in Las Vegas, NV residents decide to do, the court has the power to liquidate your personal property. This means the court will order the sale of your property and the proceeds will go to your creditors to help pay off your debts.
You are not at risk of losing all of your property in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, however, as the law does provide some exemptions from liquidation. Both the federal government and each individual state have enacted regulations protecting certain types of property; therefore, the exact type of protected property varies from state to state. Illinois law requires bankruptcy filers in the state to use only the Nevada-specific exemptions, as the state opted out of the federal list of exemptions. The following are some examples of property exemptions specific to Nevada:
- Equity in your home: The Nevada Homestead Exemption allows homeowners to exempt up to $555,000 of the value of their home. This includes land with a house on it, a mobile home, or a condominium.
- Your vehicle: Similar to the Homestead exemption, the Nevada Motor Vehicle Exemption allows you to exempt up to $15,000 of value in a car or other type of motor vehicle.
- Personal property: Nevada law allows you to keep various other types of personal property, such as necessary clothing, bibles, academic textbooks, family pictures, and professionally prescribed health aids.
- Assets or incoming funds: Protected monetary assets include health or disability benefits, life insurance or annuity proceeds from a spouse, child, parent, or other dependents, the necessary amount of child support or alimony, many public sector pension payment and public benefits, and at least 75 percent of earned but unpaid wages.
- Tools of the trade: Such protected tools may include actual physical tools used for work, professional books, equipment, or other implements used in the particular trade of the bankruptcy filer.
- Wildcard exemption: If you file for bankruptcy in Las Vegas, NV, this exemption allows you to protect his or her equity in any other type of personal property up to the amount of $10,000 for individuals and $20,000 for married couples. As previously mentioned, this exemption is often utilized to protect additional value in vehicles.
Preparing Your Documents
It is not possible to file without certain documents. If you are planning to file Las Vegas, Ballstaedt Law Firm would recommend that you gather the following paperwork and bring it with you to your consultation. This is especially true if you need your bankruptcy to be completed as fast as possible.
- Two years of tax returns (or more)
- At least 6 months of bank statements and paycheck stubs
- Two years of profit and loss statements if you are self-employed
- Any current copies of your vehicle loan statements
- Any current mortgage statements
- Foreclosure-related paperwork
- Your life insurance policy
- A valuation of your car
- Your marital settlement if you are divorced
- A driver’s license copy
- A copy of your social security card
You will very likely be asked to answer several questions about your financial situation. Some law firms will provide you with a questionnaire beforehand, and others prefer to go over these questions in person.
Questions to Ask a Lawyer
Naturally, when you file for bankruptcy in Las Vegas, NV, you will have questions about the process. Some questions to ask a lawyer might include:
- Which type of bankruptcy is right for me?
- Will all my debt be eliminated?
- Will I lose any of my assets?
- If I have a monthly payment plan, how much will I likely pay?
- Who will go to my 341 meeting?
- What are your fees?
A lawyer should be happy to answer your questions in a way that is helpful and supportive.
Should You File for Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy is an ideal way to get out of debt; however, it is not for everyone. If you are in debt, cannot afford to make your monthly payments, and are facing a growing concern of being sued by creditors, bankruptcy might be right for you. Realistically, you should talk with a lawyer about your potential options, which may include Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.
What Are the Pros and Cons of Filing Bankruptcy?
The number one benefit of filing is the ability to get a fresh start without credit card and medical debt. There are also many other pros, but also cons. For example, you may lose the ability to take out certain loans or apply for select jobs.
Is the Firm Devoted to Bankruptcy?
There are many different law firms in Nevada. Some will practice bankruptcy law in addition to many other areas of the law, and others limit their cases exclusively to bankruptcy. Ideally, you should choose a lawyer who has extensive experience in bankruptcy law, debt relief, and other related matters.
What Do You Need to Get Started?
The more information you can provide, the better. We would recommend that you gather the documentation listed above. If we need anything else, we will let you know before your consultation.
Will Ballstaedt Law Firm Go to My 341 Meeting?
All filing cases will have a 341 Meeting. This meeting will include the trustee, debtor, and creditors. Many people are very nervous about this meeting and do not know how to approach it. At this time, you should have your lawyer at your side. In general, we will be at your 341 Meeting and handle the majority of the speaking on your behalf.
Call Our Office Today
When you file for bankruptcy, you want to hold on to as much of your personal property as possible. Exemptions can be complicated, though, and so it is important that you consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney. If you are considering filing bankruptcy in Las Vegas, NV, contact Ballstaedt Law Firm to find out what your best options may be for your situation.