Bankruptcy is a way for individuals to find their way back to a positive financial footing. Though bankruptcy filings have grown over the years, many people still have strong misconceptions about the process and its effects.
If you or a loved one are considering filing for bankruptcy, it is important you understand what all it entails. There are a few key facts to understand about bankruptcy in the state of Maryland.
To qualify for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, individuals may have to complete the means test. This test not only helps to determine if individuals with higher incomes qualify, it also calculates how much of a debt they will be able to pay back. There are a few ways that individuals may be exempt from the test, such as:
- Having an income under the Maryland median for their household size
- Primary debts are not consumer debts
- Being a disabled veteran who obtained debt during active duty
There are other situations where individuals may receive exemptions. Those individuals who are not exempt must file the proper test paperwork to qualify for a bankruptcy.
Many individuals have the impression that bankruptcy will ruin their credit. However, this could not be further from the truth. Bankruptcy helps to eliminate debts and give individuals an opportunity to rebuild their credit. In some cases, people's scores have risen up to 150 points within a year's time.
Bankruptcy may delay some larger purchases, but it does not make them impossible. For example, two years after a bankruptcy, a person may qualify for a home loan. Also, car dealers seek filers after their bankruptcies finalizes, because they know the people are out of debt and cannot file again for eight years.
As you can see, many different people may benefit from filing bankruptcy. If you are considering it, a knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney may be helpful in determining the best path for you.