Bankruptcy - Lakeland,FL

Updated on April 29, 2012
G.A. asks from Apollo Beach, FL
8 answers

Hi my husband and I have pretty much decided to file bankruptcy, im very sad about it but with him loosing is god paying job, we just cant afford all our bills now, can anyone recommend a good affordable attorney in the lakeland area, we are new to this as well so not sure which one to do,wether to file chapter 13 or 7, we would like to keep our house, most of anything, my car well idk about that, cant afford that no more, bank has helped for 6 months but thats up, no other choice now tried to trade down that wony work, owe way too much on it.Please if anyone can help I would appricate it very much. Thank you.

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E.A.

answers from Erie on

They are all going to charge about the same amount, $1500. I suggest you stick with lawyers that specialize in it. Good luck, and I hope things improve for you soon.

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A.A.

answers from Tulsa on

Bankruptcy rules have changed due to new federal laws in the last couple of years (dad's a bankruptcy trustee and attorney, so I hear alot about this). It is VERY complicated, and much more stringent with who qualifies and who doesn't qualify to file. Find an attorney that specializes in bankruptcy and is up to date with all the new rules. If not, if your attorney screws something up, you are still responsible for it. Be prepared to give them all your financial docs, pay stubs, loans, mortgages, etc. and to be in for a lot of credit counseling. Good luck, it's a hard choice and you'll likely feel the effects of filing for years to come unfortunately.

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G.B.

answers from Oklahoma City on

We had an attorney we used for our guardianship of our grand kids. He was expensive for bankruptcy too so we started paying him $50 per month then $100 of we could afford it. We kept adding more and more money to it. The laws changed and we ended up deciding to take the money back and just not file. We have all kinds of bills but they cannot do anything to us.

I think if you talk to some good attorneys and ask them about making payments while you gather up your bills and stuff then you will have enough paid in by the time you file.

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N.N.

answers from Detroit on

Before contacting any of the lawyers I suggest you listen to Dave Ramsey talk show on the radio or go on his website. You can even try and call him and talk to him about your situation and get his opinion/solution. I think he is also on tweeter if you want to post a question there....

He is a good financial adviser and uses common sense principles (like our grand parents and great grand parents used to) to approach financial problems.

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J.J.

answers from Dallas on

i don't have a recommendation for an atty for you b/c i live in tx, but i will say, regardless of what anyone says, if BK is right for you, then do it. don't worry about what other people say. i filed in october & it was just discharged. i am now ABLE to budget, live within my means, and save like i'm supposed to. for some ppl it is just impossible to even GET to that step w/o having a clean slate.
there's more to life than your credit score, your weight, your income, etc. it will all get back on track. if you simply don't have the means to get yourself out then do it. not everybody can sell stuff (i didn't have anything to sell!), can get a second job (i'm a single mom & don't have childcare to do that), and didn't spend frivolously to get in debt (child custody attorney is what caused my debt)....so don't let ppl judge you and DON'T FEEL BAD. every situation's different. i just wish you good luck. don't let it happen again - i know i'm not! :) it will be okay, i promise. after you file, you'll learn great budgeting tips, savings tips & THEN you can teach your children. wth are you teaching them now??? that's how i looked at it! good luck mama, you'll be fine! :)

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A.G.

answers from Mayaguez on

The lawyer you finally select will explain the reach of either chapter 13 or chapter 7, how much each will protect you. You will not loose your home. It is sad to be in this situation and the future just looks gray. But you will survive.
Been there, over 10 years ago. Good luck

C.O.

answers from Washington DC on

G.:

I'm sorry you are going through this.

I would strongly recommend that you go to your local library and borrow books from Dave Ramsey or Suze Orman. You need to get your finances under YOUR control and them (the finances) not controlling you. I would go to lawyers.com and Angieslist.org to find good lawyers. Keep in mind the laws have changed and you may not be "awarded" dissolution of your debt. Keep in mind that a lawyer will want the money upfront - not in payments and they are usually $1500 to $3000 if not more. Some will do a free consultation but overall? you will have to bring money to the table.

I understand about job loss...I get it. Loud and clear. However, we have NO debt other than our home. No credit cards, no loans, etc. and we managed it. Yeah - it was tough. But we managed it.

go through your home and shed yourself of the things you do NOT need - the essentials to live by - and sell them - on craigslist, ebay, yard sale, etc. to get the money in the door.

Since you know you can't afford your car but you owe too much on it - getting rid of it is not an option. If you sell it - you won't be able to give clear title so who will buy it from you? Not me.

If you have collectibles - baseball cards, etc. sell them. They aren't doing you ANY good sitting around the house.

I would start looking for a job for myself. There are times when you gotta suck it up and put the kids in day care to get out of a jam...and you are in a jam....sell your home if you are not underwater on it and rent a place that you can afford. use the money from the sale of your home and apply it to future rent or paying off your car...and any debt you have...

CUT UP ALL YOUR CREDIT CARDS!!!! Call the credit card companies and make plans with them for payments...DO NOT USE THEM AGAIN...credit card companies WILL do this. They would much rather get the money in the door than lose it to bankruptcy....they can and most likely will lower your interest rate and tell them what you can afford to pay. As long as you are paying on it - you are good.

I would hope that your husband is actively looking for a job and not just in Florida. I don't know what he does sometimes one needs to look outside their comfort zone for a job.

Start looking for ways for you to bring money in the door...offer baby sitting services...house cleaning...anything that will help you guys get money in the door.

GOOD LUCK!!

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L.K.

answers from Chicago on

A good attorney will be worth every last penny (literally) and it can change your life. It's amazing to wake up and not have to worry about collections phone calls etc. I'm pretty sure they can't take your primary residence. Sure you won't qualify for a credit card for 7 years or more but in the meantime you'll pay cash for everything and won't ever be in a mess again.
Good luck!

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