Bankruptcy Attorney in Dayton Ohio
Looking for a great bankruptcy attorney?
Are you struggling with overwhelming debt and can’t seem to get ahead financially? It may be time to consider filing for bankruptcy under Title 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code.
Personal Bankruptcy Attorney Richard West has helped thousands of clients file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy & Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Dayton, Ohio. He’s a Board Certified Consumer Bankruptcy Specialist, and a certified Credit Counselor and Debt Arbitrator. He compares all options, so you get the best results. We are a debt relief agency.
Over 30 Years Fighting Credit Card Predators
Why You Should Hire A Dayton Bankruptcy Attorney
Bankruptcy law is difficult, complex and your financial future is at stake. A single mistake could spell disaster for you. Many people have lost their homes and cars due to errors they made trying to do their own bankruptcy or because they tried to save money by hiring a “cheap” inexperienced attorney.
At Richard West Law Office, we have board-certified expertise and over 35 years of experience helping over 20,000 families and individuals get the debt relief help and credit recovery they need. West Law Office clients have placed over 400 reviews (and counting) sharing their positive experiences with us as we provide customized plans to wipe out debt, keep your property, and rapidly restore your credit.
Bankruptcy law is so complex that it is recognized as a specialty area of the law by the Ohio Supreme Court.
Only attorneys who pass extremely difficult and extensive examinations and have demonstrated extraordinary knowledge and skill in bankruptcy law can advertise as Consumer Bankruptcy Specialists.
The list of Certified Specialists is found at abcworld.org. Richard West has been a Certified Consumer Bankruptcy Specialist since 2005 and has been practicing bankruptcy law since 1986.
By Filing for Bankruptcy Relief in Dayton You Can
Wipe Out Debt, Keep Your Property & Rebuild Your Credit
Are you a Dayton, Ohio resident who is burdened with debt? Start here for an explanation on Bankruptcy options.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
Personal Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney
This is the most commonly filed chapter of bankruptcy in Dayton. Nationwide, 62% of consumer bankruptcy cases are filed as Chapter 7.
While you may read on the internet that Chapter 7 is a “liquidation bankruptcy where your non-exempt property is sold to pay your creditors,” this is very misleading.
Most of the Chapter 7 cases filed in Dayton do not result in the consumer losing any property at all.
You will normally keep the property you want to keep, generally your home and cars, and lose nothing. Your unsecured debt, like credit cards, medical bills, personal loans, and similar debts, are discharged with no payment.
The typical Chapter 7 case lasts for only five months, and you only have to meet with the trustee, not a judge, one time. Currently, due to COVID-19, there are no in-person meetings, and the trustee meeting is held by conference call.
Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Personal Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Chapter 13 is a form of debt reorganization, where you consolidate your debts into one payment which is made to a trustee. About 38% of consumer bankruptcy cases are Chapter 13. Dayton Chapter 13 plans can last for 3 to 5 years, and some are required to be five years long.
A common misunderstanding about Chapter 13 is that you will pay back ALL your debt in the plan. This is not true. Normally only a fraction of your debt will be repaid, often as little as 1%. This is very similar to Chapter 7.
Unlike Chapter 7, you do not have to be current on your house or car in order to keep them in Chapter 13. In fact, people frequently file Chapter 13 in order to catch up on the missed house and car payments and protect themselves from repossession or foreclosure.
Some people are afraid that they will not have enough money for their living expenses if they file a Chapter 13. The truth is that many of our clients have MORE money in their living expense budget, and this enables them to keep their home and cars protected while discharging all of their other debt, just like in Chapter 7.
Debt Settlement & Debt Negotiation
Debt settlement companies take your money and withhold payment from your creditors, trying to get them to take small lump-sum settlements. Your credit is trashed in the process and there is no guarantee that any creditor will give you a deal.
Debt negotiation, or debt management firms try to negotiate lower interest rates and sometimes forgiveness of some of the debt itself.
In all non-bankruptcy programs, you’ll pay tax on whatever debt is written off by your creditors.
Although non-bankruptcy programs sometimes work, in many cases they fail, and you end up needing to file chapter 7 or chapter 13 after wasting valuable time and thousands of dollars. When you file a bankruptcy, you can be confident in the outcome.
The Cost of a Dayton Bankruptcy Attorney
When you’re looking for a bankruptcy attorney near me, it’s important to do your research and find an experienced one over a cheap bankruptcy attorney. Don’t be fooled by cheap ‘bankruptcy mills’ tricking unsuspecting potential clients into thinking they’ll save money. Experienced attorneys in Dayton have all heard the horror stories of what can happen with inexperienced ones – fixing these problems is best left up to someone who has experience handling such bankruptcy cases before!
Our bankruptcy lawyers are here to make sure that your case is handled with care. We understand every situation can be different, and we’re committed to giving you the best service available at competitive prices because you deserve nothing less than excellent representation on such a personal matter.
Source of Debt in Dayton
Like many people in the United States, Daytonians from the “Gem City” have seen their fair share of ups and downs. A stagnant economy , a retraction in economic influences, whatever the cause more and more residents in Dayton are feeling the financial pinch. These problems combine to put unbearable strains on relationships, strains on marriages, and lead to separations and divorce. Uncontrollable debt is the single most commonly mentioned contributing factor in why couples fight.
With that in mind, here are some common debt issues plaquing the people of Ohio.
Sources of Debt
What They Can Claim
What They Can Cause
It is clear that there is a lot to loose when you are struggling with overwhelming debt and you may feel that there is no way out. But, that is not true and we shape our own future. I have actually been in your position before. In Year I suffered a serious medical issue and I was worried about the same things you are right now. I was struggling and about to loose everything when I filed for bankruptcy. So we can get through this together. There is an answer.
Types of Debts Discharged in Bankruptcy
- Credit Card Debt
Credit card debt is a major reason to file for bankruptcy. The interest charged on credit card debt often forces you to pay much more for things you buy. Credit card debts are referred to as “unsecured debts,” which means the things you purchase cannot be repossessed if you discharge the debt in bankruptcy.
- Medical Bills Medicals bills are another top reason people file bankruptcy in Dayton, Ohio. Even if you have insurance, the cost of any medical issue can be too much to handle. Often, it only takes a single trip to the hospital to break your budget. Medical bills are discharged in bankruptcy, and if you do file bankruptcy on medical debt, you will not be denied medical treatment in the future, should you need to go to the emergency room.
- Mortgage Debt Bankruptcy will discharge debt arising from a foreclosure. Foreclosure sales often result in very large deficiency judgments, which ruin your credit. Normally the amount is so large you will never be able to pay it. You can discharge this deficiency in Chapter 7. If you’re behind on your mortgage, filing bankruptcy in Dayton Ohio, can stop the sheriff’s sale and give you time to catch up on missed payments. By discharging other debts, you free up money to catch up on your mortgage.
- Personal Loans (including Payday Loans and Cash Advances) These are unsecured debts and can be discharged in bankruptcy. Often you are required to sign a document that indicates you are not filing bankruptcy. These are totally unenforceable in bankruptcy! You cannot “sign away your right to file bankruptcy” on these loans. While there are a few considerations to observe, like how long ago the loan was taken out, we discharge these debts every day.
- Forbearance Debt on Mortgage If you have a mortgage forbearance and did not make your mortgage payments, some mortgage lenders want you to pay more than you can afford to catch up. The Federal Government mandated that many lenders offer forbearance, but did NOT specify how the lender is supposed to let you catch up the payments. Some will demand more than you can pay.
When the payments are more than you can afford, bankruptcy can give you up to 5 years to catch up on the missed payments. You would discharge your unsecured debt with little or no payment and free up money to save your home.
- Evictions and Bankruptcy Debt owed from apartment leases can be discharged in bankruptcy. This includes back rent as well as “damages” the landlord claims you may have caused. Discharging debt related to broken leases and evictions will generally not keep you from being able to rent another apartment or house later. In fact, many landlords look at a prior bankruptcy as a positive thing.
Having little or no debt means that you will be better able to pay your rent on time!
Student Loan Debt
Although student loans are seldom discharged in bankruptcy, you could free up money in your budget to start paying the student loans by discharging other debts. And, if a student loan creditor is suing you, bankruptcy can give you the “breathing room” you need to wipe out other debts, put a freeze on the student loan collections, and get the time you need to recover financially. Then, after bankruptcy, you could have the ability to begin making payments on the student loans.
Rebuild Your Credit
With the step-by-step guidance of this simple program, you’ll know what to do, when, and in what order, to improve your credit. Most will get a credit score of 650 – 700 within a year of discharge after filing Chapter 7.
Now that’s a financial recovery!
Many people never recover good credit after bankruptcy. They don’t have a plan. But I have a plan for you. A proven program that has worked for thousands of my clients to quickly recover credt after discharging your debts. You can too!
It won’t matter that the bankruptcy will appear on your credit report – if you have taken the proper steps to raise your score. Many of our clients get car loans at good interest rates only a year after discharge and are buying homes only 2 to 3 years later.
Filing for bankruptcy is often the smartest move you can make. If you’re so far behind that it will take you years to catch up; then bankruptcy should NOT be a “last resort.” Once you talk with one of our attorneys, you may find that you can cut years off your financial recovery time. And nobody has time to waste paying bills they can discharge, freeing up money for themselves and their families.
How a Dayton Bankruptcy Attorney Can Help.
Choosing a bankruptcy type to file and filing for bankruptcy in Dayton is confusing, complicated, and many mistakes can be made if you are not steeped in bankruptcy law.
Therefore, it only makes sense to rely on the expertise of a bankruptcy attorney with a 35 year track record of success. Your financial future is in good hands with West Law Office.
The best solution in bankruptcy is to find a lawyer you can trust. One that has many reviews and testimonials.
This leaves room for little error. Most of our clients have very little knowledge on the bankruptcy process, bankruptcy law, or have tried filing for bankruptcy relief but found it to be overwhelming.
Don’t delay when filing, if your financial situation is not getting better, it’s probably getting worse. Don’t pretend things will get better all by themselves. Reach out to Richard West Law Office today for a free no-obligation consolation with one of the best bankruptcy attorneys in Dayton. We can file online, and we offer no-contact consultations.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I Hire a Bankruptcy Attorney?
If you are struggling with debt, about to face foreclosure or car repossession. Then hiring a bankruptcy attorney makes sense. Bankruptcy is a complicated process and many errors can be made without the assistance of legal counsel.
What is the Income Limit in Ohio for Chapter 7?
The income limit is commonly though of as the median income. Here’s the chart for Ohio, monthly gross income:
1 person $4,368
2 people $5,588
3 people $6,585
4 people $8,015
For each additional person add $750
However, this is just a starting point. If your income (averaged, over the 6 months before you file) is more, you must complete the means test to see if you are eligible to file. Even if you fail this test, you might qualify for chapter 7 if you have special circumstances. An experienced bankruptcy specialist can tell you if you qualify.
Is it Better to File Chapter 7 or Chapter 13?
Trick Question. One is not “better” than the other. The “best” chapter to file is the one that benefits you the most, and fits your goals and circumstances. Sometimes Chapter 13 gives you a better result, and you pay less to creditors, than Chapter 7. That’s why its so important to consult a certified specialist to compare the pros and cons of each for your individual situation.
Can I Keep My Car in a Chapter 7?
Yes, and most people do. When you keep your car in Chapter 7 this is called a Reaffirmation. You sign papers that tell the creditor you are going to keep, and continue to pay, for your car.
Can I Keep My House in a Chapter 13?
Yes, and most people do. And, if you are behind in your house payments, you get up to 5 years to catch up your missed payments. This permits many people to keep their homes safe from foreclosure, especially after a forebearance.
What Do You Lose if You File a Chapter 7?
In most cases, you will not lose any property at all! This is because our property is protected, up to a certain maximum value, in bankruptcy. For example, you can protect over $140,000 equity in your home, and $5,000 equity in your car when you file.
What Our Clients Say
We Service the Following Cities and Communities Outside and Inside of Dayton, Ohio.
Ready? Get on the Road to Bankruptcy Recovery
We are still open for remote filings in Dayton and remote consultations during the pandemic. All consultations are free and there is no catch. We only work with clients who want to work with us. Nothing high-pressure. We look forward to assisting you.