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What will you give up if you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

When debt overwhelms a Georgia consumer, he or she may have to deal with things such as phone calls from creditors, constant hounding from debt collectors and the stress that comes from financial struggles. A person facing this type of situation may feel hopeless and unsure of what to do next.

Are you dealing with debt? You may know that one of your options includes filing for bankruptcy. Consumer bankruptcy allows you to deal with your debt and stop creditor harassment, but you may have concerns about what this step may mean for your personal belongings. If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you may wonder if you will lose some of your assets.

What can you keep?

Chapter 7 is liquidation bankruptcy, which means that the proceeds from the sale of some of the applicant's personal belongings will have to go toward the payment of his or her debt. However, it may be encouraging for you to know that there are certain exemptions that will allow you to keep many of the things that are important to you. In fact, you may be able to keep some of the following things:

  • Goods and furnishings that you need for your home
  • Things you need to do your job
  • Personal jewelry worth up to a certain amount
  • Personal vehicles worth less than a specific amount
  • Your pension
  • Some of the equity you have in your home
  • Damages from a personal injury claim
  • Appliances for your home
  • Unpaid wages you already earned
  • Public benefits you received

The intent of bankruptcy is not to leave you without any possessions and completely destitute. The point of filing for bankruptcy is to deal with certain types of debt and secure a better future for yourself and your family. However, there are some types of property that are not exempt. Before you file, you will want to learn more about what this choice will look like for you personally.

Is it right for you?

Filing for bankruptcy is not the right choice in every situation. You will find it helpful to discuss your case with an experienced attorney who can help you understand your rights and options. An assessment of your case can reveal whether you are eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and, if you are not, if another option is good for your situation. You do not have to allow fears about bankruptcy to keep you from moving forward with this process.

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