During tough economic times when so many people are out of work, a disproportionate number of people are facing financial hardships. You may be afraid to answer the phone or check the mail because you know you will be subject to the abuse of a rude representative of a collection agency or a threatening letter. You may even be afraid to even answer the door because you fear that it is a process server trying to serve you with a lawsuit filed by a creditor. We understand your fear and anxiety, but avoiding these financial problem and hiding from your creditors will only allow the problems to get worse. Filing a bankruptcy whether a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 will result in an immediate stop to all of this harassment.
Once you file a bankruptcy all collection efforts by your creditors must cease immediately. Any collection efforts, lawsuits or other attempts to enforce a debt against you must be suspended as soon as you file your bankruptcy and provide notice to your creditors. The filing of a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy trigger the “automatic stay”, which is an injunction that requires an immediate termination to any debt collection or enforcement actions including the following:
- Levies against your bank account
- Foreclosure proceedings
- Harassing calls and collection letters
- Lawsuits filed by creditors
- Repossession of property such as (cars, real estate, furniture, etc)
- Wage garnishments
The automatic stay is designed to provide temporary relief from debt collection efforts upon filing a bankruptcy. This can be a critical tool, which permits you to protect your paycheck, home or automobile, Most families need to preserve these critical assets if they hope to survive their current economic crisis and get back on their feet financially. The bankruptcy court takes the automatic stay very seriously so it is a very effective form of protection from creditors. A creditor can actually be financially penalized for violating the automatic stay after the filing of a bankruptcy.
The automatic stay results in a temporary suspension of collection efforts so that the rights of the debtor and all creditors can be protected and balanced fairly. The automatic stay expires 60 days from filing a bankruptcy petition in most situations and within 30 days for those who have previously filed a bankruptcy within the last year. If a debtor has filed two bankruptcies within the prior year, the automatic stay usually can be requested but will not be granted automatically.
Some forms of debt and debt collection efforts are not impacted by the automatic stay, such as child support, evictions and other exceptions. It is important to talk to an experienced bankruptcy attorney who can advise you about the applicability of the automatic stay to your specific debts. Your bankruptcy attorney will carefully analyze your financial situation including your available income, secured and unsecured debts and other factors to develop the most appropriate bankruptcy strategy for your specific financial situation. It is much easier to stop creditors from taking money from you bank account or paycheck than to get it back after it has been taken so the sooner you contact an experienced Kansas City bankruptcy attorney the better.
We offer a free initial consultation. Contact Kansas City bankruptcy attorney Weston R. Moore personally about your matter by calling our office at (913) 782-7075 or using our convenient contact form.
Weston R. Moore, Attorney
13401 S. Mur Len Road, Suite 100
Olathe, KS 66062