Stiberman’s Blog

Helping clients across Florida achieve financial freedom, since 1998.
Free Consultation
  • Paul B.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I would like to share the amazing experience I have had with this Law firm. I was on the verge of loosing my house because I had not paid my property taxes. I looked for a Bankruptcy at Read More
    July 10, 2023logo
  • S.M.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    When I say this office was absolutely the best, I am not kidding! They have been absolutely phenomenal. Robert has been the best bankruptcy attorney. The whole team has always kept Read More
    April 20, 2023logo
  • Paula D.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I was referred by a friend to this bankruptcy attorney. Mr. Stiberman and his staff was very courteous, knowledgeable and very caring towards my concerns. I am pleased with the outcom Read More
    April 18, 2023logo
  • Paul B.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I would like to share the amazing experience I have had with this Law firm. I was on the verge of loosing my house because I had not paid my property taxes. I looked for a Bankruptcy at Read More
    July 10, 2023logo
  • S.M.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    When I say this office was absolutely the best, I am not kidding! They have been absolutely phenomenal. Robert has been the best bankruptcy attorney. The whole team has always kept Read More
    April 20, 2023logo
  • Paula D.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I was referred by a friend to this bankruptcy attorney. Mr. Stiberman and his staff was very courteous, knowledgeable and very caring towards my concerns. I am pleased with the outcom Read More
    April 18, 2023logo
  • R.P.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    The process was relatively easy, I would recommend Stiberman Law to anyone who finds themselves in need of a bankruptcy attorney.
    February 24, 2023logo
  • Jose N.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I have to say that I have had a great experience with Stiberman Law regarding a bankruptcy and they have been very informative and supportive. They have been very helpful and always ans Read More
    January 20, 2023logo
  • L.L.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    Excellent service. Great bankruptcy attorney and staff. Always informed me of what to expect. My Chapter 13 bankruptcy was smooth and the process was easy thanks to Robert and the Read More
    July 20, 2022logo
  • Sam Sstarstarstarstarstar5.0
    Twelve years ago I was in need of legal representation stemming from the housing meltdown if 2008. Robert Stiberman and his staff handled the matter with complete professionalism and sp Read More
    October 19, 2022logo
  • K.D.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I was looking for a bankruptcy attorney in Miami, and I found Mr. Stiberman. He and his office were efficient, and they guided me through every step of the process. I am appreciative of Read More
    September 16, 2022logo
  • Carmen C.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I am so grateful for Stiberman Law, P.A. In 2019 my husband and were faced with a very difficult decision file for Bankruptcy, unfortunately we weren’t able to pay for our credit Read More
    October 26, 2022logo
  • N.M.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    Excellent work from this bankruptcy law firm! I was drowning in debt with my license suspended from a lawsuit I had and thought I would have to spend the rest of my life paying back deb Read More
    August 17, 2022logo
  • R.Z.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    The experience with this office has been great. No problems at all they have kept me straight to doing the right thing and feeling a breeze of peace and being debt free with my bankruptcy.
    August 30, 2022logo
  • F.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    Very happy with Robert and his team. Thanks to them we were able to save our home. Very helpful and knowledgeable in bankruptcy. Best attorney.
    July 28, 2022logo
  • E.R.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    I had a great experience, I just want thank Stiberman law and his team for a great experience also Ana for the help and explaining my case. Appreciate, thank you
    July 25, 2022logo
  • A.B.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    Very good office with my bankruptcy. They have been amazing through this hard process. Very happy with Robert and his staff they are very nice and professional. Thank you stiberman!
    July 23, 2022logo
  • W.J.starstarstarstarstar5.0
    Amazing work by Robert. They are really good with what they do, very attentive and knowledgeable. Customer service and professionalism are top, the lawyer has been great this whole t Read More
    June 25, 2022logo

How To File Bankruptcy for Free: A 10-Step Guide

So, you’re in a bit of a pickle, and you’re thinking about throwing in the towel on your debts. You’re not alone! With skyrocketing living costs and the never-ending parade of bills, many folks are finding themselves in dire straits. But fret not! This article will help you navigate the tricky waters of filing for bankruptcy, without spending a dime. Get ready to take charge of your financial future with our “How To File Bankruptcy for Free: A 10-Step Guide.”

Step 1: Understand the Types of Bankruptcy

Before you jump headfirst into bankruptcy, it’s essential to know your options. There are two common types of personal bankruptcy:

  1. Chapter 7 – Liquidation bankruptcy
  2. Chapter 13 – Wage earner’s plan

Each has its pros and cons, so weigh them carefully to determine the best fit for your situation.

Step 2: Determine Your Eligibility

Bankruptcy isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. To see if you qualify, you’ll need to pass the “means test.” This test considers your income, expenses, and the size of your household. If you’re eligible for Chapter 7, you can move forward with your “How To File Bankruptcy for Free: A 10-Step Guide.”

Step 3: Complete Credit Counseling

Before you can file, you’ll need to complete a credit counseling course from an approved agency. While these courses usually have a fee, you can request a fee waiver if you’re truly strapped for cash.

Step 4: Gather Your Documents

Get your ducks in a row by collecting the necessary paperwork, such as:

  • Income statements
  • Recent tax returns
  • Lists of assets and liabilities
  • Proof of completed credit counseling

Step 5: Prepare Your Bankruptcy Forms

Now, it’s time to fill out the official bankruptcy forms. You can find them online for free, and they’ll require you to disclose your financial information in detail.

Step 6: File Your Bankruptcy Case

Head down to your local bankruptcy court to submit your paperwork. You’ll also need to pay a filing fee, but don’t worry – you can apply for a waiver if you’re unable to cover the cost.

Step 7: Attend the Meeting of Creditors

Once you’ve filed, you’ll be summoned to a meeting with your creditors. This is your chance to explain your situation, so be honest and open about your financial woes.

Step 8: Complete a Debtor Education Course

Before your debts can be discharged, you’ll need to complete a debtor education course. Just like credit counseling, you can request a fee waiver if you’re in dire straits.

Step 9: Await Your Discharge

Now, sit tight! The court will review your case, and if everything checks out, your debts will be discharged. Congratulations – you’re on your way to a fresh financial start!

Step 10: Rebuild Your Credit

It’s time to pick up the pieces and rebuild your credit. Start by creating a budget, paying your bills on time, and slowly rebuilding your credit score.

Should I file for bankruptcy on my own or with a lawyer?

Deciding whether to file for bankruptcy on your own or with a lawyer largely depends on your personal situation, financial complexity, and comfort level with the legal process. Here are some factors to consider when making your decision:

Pros of filing on your own (pro se):

  1. Cost savings: Filing for bankruptcy without a lawyer can save you money in attorney fees. If you’re already in financial distress, this might be an attractive option.
  2. Self-education: Going through the bankruptcy process on your own can be an educational experience, as it forces you to learn about the legal system and the intricacies of bankruptcy law.

Cons of filing on your own:

  1. Complexity: Bankruptcy law can be complicated, and making a mistake on your forms or not understanding specific procedures can lead to delays or even the dismissal of your case.
  2. Possible loss of property: A Chapter 7 Trustee will seek to liquidate all your non-exempt property. Exemptions laws can be tricky and they varie by state In order to protect your property you must properly claim an available exemption – meaning, the existence of an exemption is not enough. You must take affirmative steps to claim the correct exemption in your bankruptcy schedules.A lack of exemption understanding can result in a signisifcant loss of property.
  3. Time-consuming: Filing for bankruptcy on your own can be a time-consuming process, as you’ll need to research the laws, gather all the necessary documentation, and fill out the paperwork correctly.

Pros of hiring a lawyer:

  1. Expertise: A bankruptcy attorney has the knowledge and experience to navigate the complex legal process and ensure that your case is handled correctly.
  2. Efficiency: A lawyer can help you gather the necessary documentation, fill out the paperwork, and represent you in court, saving you time and reducing the likelihood of errors or delays.
  3. Negotiation: An attorney can negotiate with your creditors on your behalf and potentially secure more favorable terms for the repayment or discharge of your debts.

Cons of hiring a lawyer:

  1. Cost: Hiring a bankruptcy attorney can be expensive, with fees typically ranging from $1,000 to $3,000, depending on the complexity of your case. This may be a significant burden if you’re already struggling financially.

If your financial situation is more complicated or you’re uncomfortable handling legal matters, hiring a bankruptcy attorney may be a wise investment to ensure the best possible outcome.

FAQs:

Q: How long does it take to file for bankruptcy?

A: The entire process can take anywhere from 3 to 6 months, depending on the complexity of your case and the type of bankruptcy you choose.

Q: Will filing for bankruptcy ruin my credit forever?

A: While bankruptcy will negatively impact your credit, it’s not a permanent black mark. Chapter 7 bankruptcy stays on your credit report for 10 years, and Chapter 13 for 7 years. However, you can start rebuilding your credit immediately after your debts are discharged.

Q: Can I file for bankruptcy on my own?

A: Yes, you can file for bankruptcy without an attorney, also known as filing “pro se.” However, it can be a complicated process, so be prepared to do your research and understand the legal requirements.

Q: What debts can be discharged in bankruptcy?

A: Most unsecured debts, like credit card debt and medical bills, can be discharged in bankruptcy. However, certain debts, such as student loans, alimony, and child support, are typically not dischargeable.

Navigating the bankruptcy process can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to break the bank. By following our “How To File Bankruptcy for Free: A 10-Step Guide,” you can take control of your financial future without emptying your wallet. Remember, bankruptcy isn’t the end of the road – it’s a chance to start anew and rebuild your financial foundation. So, keep your chin up, and take the first step towards a brighter financial future.

Robert Stiberman is a bankruptcy attorney with extensive experience in Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases. He has represented numerous clients in bankruptcy cases and is well-versed in the requirements of the Chapter 7 trustees. With his knowledge and experience, Robert Stiberman can provide his clients with the guidance and representation they need to navigate bankruptcy successfully.

Written By:

Attorney Robert Stiberman

Robert is an experienced bankruptcy attorney adept at handling Chapter 7, 13, and 11 filings, with more than 15 years of experience in bankruptcy cases. Robert represents clients in both consumer and business bankruptcy ... Read More

Contact Stiberman Law Today!

Speaking to our law firm is always 100% confidential. Help is just a call away!.

Name(Required)
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Request A Free Consultation

Speaking to our law firm is always 100% confidential. We do our best to respond to inquiries in under 24 hours.

Name(Required)
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Image

Received!

We’ll get in touch as soon as possible.