How Quickly Can I File My Arkansas Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

How Quickly Can I File My Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Arkansas

Often people will delay their Arkansas Chapter 7 Bankruptcy filing. They aren’t sure if they should file or keep trying to pay off debt. They don’t really want to file and suffer the credit implications. And quite honestly, they don’t know how to file or have the money to hire an attorney to file.

The problem is, delay in the debt collection universe means the situation gets progressively worse by the hour every day. The longer a debt is outstanding, the higher the chance that the creditor will force foreclosure, file a lawsuit, garnish wages and bank accounts.

Very often, I see people come in to the Flynn Law Firm after receiving notice of a wage garnishment or a foreclosure notice on their home. For obvious reasons, these individuals want to file bankruptcy quickly. These people know that as soon as we file their bankruptcy case the bankruptcy court will issue an order that will stop the garnishments and foreclosure process.

While it is possible to file a bankruptcy case on the same day that you meet with me, the more important question is “Is it advisable to do so?” Without knowing your personal situation, my answer is “It depends.”

The documents that are filed in just your basic bankruptcy are lengthy. The typical Arkansas chapter 7 bankruptcy or chapter 13 bankruptcy case is about 60 pages long. You are required to disclose all information on bank accounts, debts, assets, income, expenses, financial transactions. . .  everything. This is time consuming and complicated to put together.

But here is the thing, to get your case filed, to get the Bankruptcy Automatic Stay that stops the collection efforts of your creditors, all you need on an immediate basis can be broken down into 3 critical pieces:

  • First, you must complete the bankruptcy petition. Generally the information you need to provide for this two page document is your name, address, social security number.
  • Second, you must complete an approved credit counseling course. Not a big deal, we can personally walk you through this part.
  • Third, you must make at least a down payment on your legal fees. In both Arkansas chapter 7 bankruptcy and chapter 13 bankruptcy our office offers workable down payments and payment plans for those that cannot afford to pay the full legal fees up front.

This is still a lot of information, BUT they are easy steps to get collection efforts stopped and can be completed within two hours.

But Should You File an Emergency Arkansas Chapter 7 Bankruptcy? Remember, that is the really important question you need to ask yourself.

There are risks to filing an emergency Arkansas Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. Depending on your situation, you may not qualify for bankruptcy or you may run the risk of losing certain unprotected assets that are of great value to you emotionally. As your attorney, we need time to evaluate your information, debts, assets, and financial transactions in order to be able to properly advise you. If this step is skipped, or delayed, you run the risk of problems arising down the road in your case.

For these and other reasons, we will almost always file an emergency bankruptcy case as a Chapter 13 case.  Why is this?  Because unlike a Chapter 7 case, which cannot be dismissed voluntarily and in which you stand the possibility of losing assets to the Trustee, in a Chapter 13 case, you may choose to dismiss voluntarily, AND the Trustee cannot take assets.  Since, in an emergency filing, we have not had the benefit of receiving and processing all of your information, we have no idea if filing a Chapter 7 case might be a landmine, so to speak.  If, after receiving all of your information, a Chapter 7 looks good, we simply then convert the Chapter 13 case to a Chapter 7 case, and complete the Arkansas Chapter 7 bankruptcy case.

Sometimes the emergency filing is totally necessary. If you have been sued, see a bankruptcy attorney first thing to determine if you should file. If you are behind on your house payment, talk to a lawyer and know your options in the beginning and what will be needed in case you need to pull the trigger and file bankruptcy.

A well planned Arkansas Chapter 7 Bankruptcy will almost always be a smoother process for you and for your attorney. But if you are in need of speed, bankruptcy can be done more quickly than one might imagine.