Bankruptcy in Mississippi

Are you contemplating bankruptcy or hiring a bankruptcy attorney in Mississippi? Are you tired of creditors calling for payments you can’t make? Maybe looking for a way to get out of debt and have you exhausted all other options? Then bankruptcy might be the solution you seek. It is a legal option that can erase a portion or all of your debts.

Types of Bankruptcy in Mississippi

Bankruptcy is a legal process that helps individuals and businesses get a fresh financial start. It eliminates a portion of or all of their debts or financial liabilities. In Mississippi, to be approved, individuals must prove they have a hardship that prevents them from staying current on their financial obligations. Keep in mind that not all debts qualify. Some liabilities, such as child support arrears, delinquent taxes, alimony, and student loans generally do not qualify for discharge. Consumers who find themselves falling behind in debt can file either Chapter 7, 11 or 13. To determine which option is right for you, you’ll need to assess your goals, assets, and income. You should also consider working with an experienced bankruptcy attorney.

If you are filing for bankruptcy in Mississippi, you must file in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Mississippi has 3 federal bankruptcy courts for the entire state.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Many people find Chapter 7 to be the right solution for their circumstances because it provides them with the opportunity to start over financially. However, before filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you should thoroughly assess your income and ability to repay what you owe. You should also speak with a bankruptcy attorney in Mississippi who can help you to decide if a liquidation plan is right for you.

Typically, individuals approved for Chapter 7 lack stable income or have experienced a change in circumstances that has resulted in an inability to manage their debts. Though Chapter 7 erases debts, the tradeoff is you may have to give up certain possessions, such as your home, car or some other assets. However, once you file your petition, an automatic stay goes into effect that requires all collection activity against you like foreclosures and garnishments, to stop temporarily. However, the automatic stay does not prevent all collection attempts. For example, if you owe child support or restitution for a criminal case, you are still liable for those payments.

The Mississippi Bar states that once an individual declares chapter 7 bankruptcy, or straight bankruptcy, makes up close to 80% of all bankruptcy filings and causes the filer’s assets to be liquidated to settle outstanding debts. Under this process the trustee will assume control of all of a person’s items, except those that have been exempted under Mississippi law, and sell them. The trustee will then distribute the proceeds from the sale to creditors in order to clear all the debts.

Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Chapter 11 bankruptcy is more complex than other types of bankruptcy. It is often used by businesses and certain types of people. It allows petitioners to restructure their debts with a reorganization plan, so they are easier to manage over a determined length of time, usually four to 18 months. The main benefit of Chapter 11 bankruptcy is that it does not require petitioners to sell off or liquidate their assets to pay what they owe. It does allow debtors to negotiate with their creditors a reorganization plan that enables them to stay current on their debts moving forward.

Filing for Chapter 11 in Mississippi can be expensive and time consuming, as the debt is reorganized to allow the individual, or most likely business, to restructure their agreement in order to pay off the debt. Under this time of reorganizational bankruptcy, the debtor enacts the same processes as the trustee, but remains in control of all the assets as they pay down the debt. The Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Mississippi provides several online forms for filing bankruptcy, ranging from filing fees to appellate motions.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is a debt restructuring or wage earners plan. In Mississippi after you file, the courts will assign a trustee to examine your liabilities and assets and ability to pay bills. Unlike other types of bankruptcy, Chapter 13 involves you restructuring your debt with a three to five-year repayment plan. The flexibility of this repayment plan will depend on what property you want to keep and how steady your income is. It may also give you the opportunity to have some or most of your debts discharged.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is more commonly referred to as debt adjustment. It allows a debtor to file a plan as to how they will pay off the debt from their current income within a given 3 to 5 year time frame. Mississippi Consumer Help states that Chapter 13 can be incredibly beneficial as it places you firmly in control. As well, it allows you the time you need to get out from under the debt without it crushing you. However, an experienced attorney in Mississippi will be vital to your structuring and sticking to a payment plan.

The Bankruptcy Process in Mississippi

There is never an ideal time to declare bankruptcy. However, if you are unable to pay off what you owe within five years, filing for bankruptcy can help you to lessen the negative impact on your situation and help you get back on track.

In Mississippi to begin the filing process, gather all of your financial records, including monthly expenses, debts, assets and annual income. This information is crucial to give the courts an accurate picture of your circumstances. Failure to provide all necessary information can result in your petition being denied.

Mississippi Bankruptcy Law provides a tight and precise examination of the bankruptcy process. First, you must determine if bankruptcy can erase your debt. Then you’ll have to decide which type of bankruptcy will be most beneficial to you. After you’ve discovered if you qualify for bankruptcy you’ll find out what property you can exempt and stop paying any qualifying debts. You’ll also need to take a credit counseling class. An experienced Mississippi attorney can almost certainly help ease the burden of this process.

Additional Facts

Mississippi has a dedicated exemption for homeowners to keep their property. However, no such exemption exists for motor vehicles or property that isn’t a home. Still, Mississippi allows you to keep property such as this as long as its value does not exceed $10,000. Pensions, retirement funds, insurance benefits, and public health benefits can also be exempt under Mississippi law.

At least six months before you file for bankruptcy, eliminate unnecessary spending. Do not run up the balances on your credit accounts. You’ll also need to complete an approved credit counseling course, usually online or over the phone. Credit counseling is necessary to help you learn financial literacy and help you learn better financial habits. Once you complete the course, you’ll receive a certificate of completion to include in your filing. If you don’t have the certificate of completion from the credit counseling course that you took, the courts will reject your bankruptcy petition.

Work With an Experienced Mississippi Lawyer

Hiring a local bankruptcy lawyer in Mississippi during this process can help reduce the costly risks of self-representation in court. An experienced bankruptcy lawyer understands state and federal bankruptcy laws. He or she can help you understand which laws apply to your case, especially which debts that can be discharged or can’t be discharged. An experienced Mississippi attorney can also offer you guidance to improve the outcome of your case.

Keep in mind that there are debt management alternatives and financial resources that may benefit you more than bankruptcy, such as debt consolidation. Though bankruptcy is an attractive solution, it is best as a last resort. Do you need immediate help? Then one of our experienced lawyers in Mississippi can guide you through the entire bankruptcy process. We can even help you connect with an attorney across Mississippi state lines.

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