Sacramento Bankruptcy FAQ

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Debt Collection Lawsuits

Can't find the help you're looking for? Call the office at (916) 333-2222 or visit my Bankruptcy Blog.

How long is a typical Chapter 7 bankruptcy case?

A typical Chapter 7 Bankruptcy discharge will occur about 3-4 months after the date that your case is filed. Depending on how motivated you are, your case can be ready to file within one week of our initial meeting. Next-day emergency filings are available to those facing imminent collection activity or foreclosure.

Can I keep my personal property in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Yes. One main concern my clients have is that they will have to turn over their personal property to the Bankruptcy Trustee during their Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. However, this is not a problem for most of my clients. Because the way the law is written, most folks have what is known as a "no asset" bankruptcy case and are not required to forfeit any of their property.

California law provides two sets of exemptions that allow you to keep certain types of property, including cars, clothes, tools of your trade, household goods — and even your house or cars. My law firm will maximize your exemptions — which means you can keep all of your property and still file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy.

Can I stop a wage garnishment or bank levy?

Yes. Wage garnishments or bank levies can be devastating. These are tools that creditors use to take your money — often with little notice.

You do not have to put up with wage garnishments or bank levies. If you get word that one of your creditors will be garnishing your wages or taking money from your bank account, call my office immediately. You have options to stop your creditors from taking your money.

My law firm can also stop wage garnishments that have already started. In some cases, the Bankruptcy Court might even try to get some of that money back from your creditors.

Similarly, if you are notified that your bank account is about to be levied, contact my law firm immediately. If you wait until the money has been taken from your account, it might be too late to get your funds back.

If your wages are being garnished or your bank account is being levied, please call my office at (916) 333-2222.

Will I have to appear in court during the bankruptcy process?

In most cases, there is just one hearing for a consumer Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. Known as the "meeting of creditors" or the "341 hearing" in lawyer terms, the hearing is not even before a judge — it is before the Bankruptcy Trustee that is assigned to your case.

A typical 341 hearing will only take about 5 to 10 minutes. The Bankruptcy Trustee will ask you some questions regarding your bankruptcy filing to ensure that everything is accurate. If there are no problems with your paperwork, the hearing will be over very quickly.

My law firm strives to ensure that each client's bankruptcy paperwork is in order to avoid any surprises at the 341 hearing. And you will always be accompanied by an attorney so that you never have to appear in court on your own.

My office can answer any questions regarding the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy process. Please call (916) 333-2222.

I am being sued by a creditor. Is Bankruptcy my only option?

No. There are other ways to deal with creditor lawsuits.

You have an absolute right to appear in court and defend yourself against claims by your creditors. I am hired by clients that do not want to file for Bankruptcy, but want to strongly defend themselves against claims by credit card companies, payday loan organizations, and personal creditors.

It is important not to ignore a summons notifying you that a lawsuit has been filed. Please contact me so that I can discuss how best to defend against these claims.

Most creditors are willing to accept settlements less than the face value of their lawsuit. The creditors know that a civil trial will cost them a lot of money in attorney's fees, and they would rather accept a quick settlement than invest money in court. I can help you negotiate a settlement while preserving your rights in court.

If you are sued by a creditor, I can defend you in court and help reach a reasonable settlement. Please call (916) 333-2222.

Can a creditor take money directly from my bank account?

In order for a creditor to take money directly from your bank account, known as a "bank levy," the creditor must usually first sue you and obtain a judgement.

If you are sued for a debt and you do not show up to court, the court can issue a "default judgement." A default judgement means that the creditor that sued you wins the lawsuit because you did not show up to defend yourself. The creditor can use the default judgement to ask your bank to turn over your money.

Too many times people visit my office with past judgements because they ignored a court summons. Don't do that. If you are sued on a debt, please contact my office immediately. My law firm can help you navigate this process to ensure that creditors don't take money from your bank accounts.

If your wages are being garnished or your bank account is being levied, please call my office at (916) 333-2222.

Need more information?

Still have more questions? Please call the office at (916) 333-2222 or visit my Bankruptcy Blog. There is a lot of good information on the blog!

And remember, your initial consultation is always free! So don't delay any longer. Call my office to schedule an appointment.