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The decision to file bankruptcy can be a difficult one to make. On one hand, people must consider how their credit will be affected, how their reputation could be tarnished, and how it may affect how they feel about themselves. On the other hand, it could be a fresh financial start for the client, as it will stop any and all creditor harassment and give the person who files the chance to reset his or her budget. Anyone in Florida who is considering Chapter 7 bankruptcy may want to consider the pros and cons.

There are several negative aspects of filing bankruptcy. Chapter 7 can stay on a person’s credit report for as many as ten years, and all of the person’s credit cards will be taken. Any property that is not exempt in the state could be taken and sold by the court-appointed trustee in order to repay the client’s debt, and the person will be unlikely to qualify for a mortgage. Bankruptcy will not cover student debt, child support or alimony.

There are also many good reasons to file Chapter 7. It takes less than a year to complete the process, and many of the person’s assets are exempt in most states, so they can keep their property. Any wages earned or property purchased after the person files is his or hers to keep as well. Although the interest rate may be higher, the client can likely obtain a new line of credit within 1 to 3 years, and he or she gets to start all over with a fresh slate in their finances.

The choice to file Chapter 7 is a personal one but is better made when it is an informed decision. By speaking with a knowledgeable bankruptcy lawyer, a client can be assured that he or she understands exactly what the process will be. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can guide the client by explaining step by step what to expect when filing Chapter 7 in Florida.

Source: findlaw.com, “Pros and Cons of Declaring Bankruptcy under Chapter 7“, Accessed on May 23, 2017