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the Upsolve Team

the Upsolve Team

Upsolve is fortunate to have a remarkable team of bankruptcy attorneys, as well as finance and consumer rights professionals, as contributing writers to help us keep our content up to date, informative, and helpful to everyone.


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Articles written by the Upsolve Team

How To Calculate Your Income for Your Bankruptcy Forms if You’re Self-Employed

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated September 30, 2022

If you're self-employed, you probably don't get regular paycheck stubs. This can make it trickier to figure out your income, which you'll need to do to file for bankruptcy. You'll also want to know your business expenses, so you can calculate your net income. This article explains how to calculate your income if you're a sole proprietor, gig worker, or independent contractor.

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How Being Self-Employed Influences Your Debt Relief Options

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney John Coble
Updated September 20, 2022

If you're self-employed (as a sole proprietor, gig worker, or independent contractor) and you're struggling with business or personal debt, you can file personal bankruptcy like Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. If you have a separate business entity like an LLC or corporation, you also have the option to put your business into bankruptcy.

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Discharge vs. Dismissal: What's the Difference?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 19, 2022

When filing bankruptcy for the first time, many people get confused about the different terms lawyers and courts use. Two words that frequently confuse first-time filers are “dismissed” and “discharged.” This article explains each term, what the differences are, and when lawyers and the court are most likely to use them when referring to your case.

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What To Do if the Trustee Says You Owe Money to the Estate

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated August 29, 2022

If you own property that's not protected, or not fully protected, by exemptions, you may owe money to your bankruptcy estate. You can either pay the money into the estate and keep the property or asset, or you can surrender the property, keep the exempted amount, and not have to pay into the estate.

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How Can I Get Free Legal Aid?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated August 29, 2022

Legal advice can be very helpful as you navigate the bankruptcy process, but not everyone can afford to hire an attorney to help them. That's where legal aid comes in. Legal aid organizations offer free or low-cost legal help to eligible individuals. This article will describe what legal aid is, how to find out if you qualify, and what it's like to work with a legal aid organization.

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What Does a Bankruptcy Discharge Do?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated June 30, 2022

A bankruptcy discharge is a court order that wipes out certain debts like credit card debts and medical bills. Once you receive a discharge, you're no longer legally obligated to repay the debts that were discharged. Some debts, like those that are secured by collateral, can only be discharged if you give up the collateral. In Chapter 7 cases, dischargeable debts will be eliminated in a matter of months. In Chapter 13 cases, the filers must complete their 3-5 year payment plan before their dischargeable debts are eliminated.

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What Does a Bankruptcy Discharge Do?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated June 30, 2022

A bankruptcy discharge is a court order that wipes out certain debts like credit card debts and medical bills. Once you receive a discharge, you're no longer legally obligated to repay the debts that were discharged. Some debts, like those that are secured by collateral, can only be discharged if you give up the collateral. In Chapter 7 cases, dischargeable debts will be eliminated in a matter of months. In Chapter 13 cases, the filers must complete their 3-5 year payment plan before their dischargeable debts are eliminated.

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What Is a Co-Debtor and How Does My Bankruptcy Affect Them?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated June 30, 2022

A co-debtor is someone who took out a loan with you. In doing so, they agreed to be equally responsible for repaying the loan or debt. If you have debts with co-debtors and you don't reaffirm the debt in a Chapter 7 case, your co-debtor will be solely responsible for repaying the debt if you get a bankruptcy discharge. If you file Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the automatic stay will protect both you and the co-debtor so long as you make the payments outlined in your repayment plan.

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What Is a Co-Debtor and How Does My Bankruptcy Affect Them?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated June 30, 2022

A co-debtor is someone who took out a loan with you. In doing so, they agreed to be equally responsible for repaying the loan or debt. If you have debts with co-debtors and you don't reaffirm the debt in a Chapter 7 case, your co-debtor will be solely responsible for repaying the debt if you get a bankruptcy discharge. If you file Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the automatic stay will protect both you and the co-debtor so long as you make the payments outlined in your repayment plan.

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What’s the Difference Between Subsidized and Unsubsidized Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated June 29, 2022

There are two types of federal student loans: subsidized and unsubsidized. Subsidized loans are granted based on financial need, but you don't have to show any financial need to qualify for an unsubsidized loan. Both types of loans must be repaid with interest, but the federal government covers some of the interest payments on subsidized loans. Because of this you'll usually pay less over the life of a subsidized loan than you will for an unsubsidized loan.

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How Much Do I Owe in Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated June 8, 2022

If you want to go back to school, finance a house, manage your debt, or file for bankruptcy, you’ll want to find out how much you owe in student loans. It might feel like you need a degree in finance to keep track of your financial aid, but we’re here to help. Keep reading to learn about how you can find out how much you owe on your student loans and how to effectively manage your student debt.

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Is Filing for Bankruptcy Worth It?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated June 8, 2022

Filing bankruptcy gives you immediate protection from your creditors and a financial fresh start by wiping out certain debts like credit card debt, payday loans, and medical debt. If your wages are being garnished or credit card companies and payday lenders are harassing you to collect payments you can't afford to pay, filing bankruptcy may be the best way to get permanent relief. But if most of your debts are non-dischargeable, filing bankruptcy may not be worth it.

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Can Bankruptcy Help Me Get My Car Back After Repossession?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated June 8, 2022

If your car was repossessed, filing bankruptcy may help you get it back, but you need to act fast. If the lender has already sold your vehicle at auction, you won't be able to get it back. Even if you can use bankruptcy to help you get your car back, you'll want to carefully weigh your options. If you can't afford to keep making your monthly car payment, it may not make sense to file bankruptcy just to get your car back because you can end up in the same situation again.

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What Is the Presumption of Abuse in Bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Updated June 1, 2022

You need to meet certain eligibility requirements to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If your income is higher than the median income for a similar-sized household in your state, this flags the bankruptcy court of a "presumption of abuse." This doesn't mean you can't file Chapter 7 or that you've abused the system. It does mean you must do more calculations as part of the means test to prove that you don't make enough money to repay your debts and that you aren't taking advantage of the bankruptcy process.

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Bankruptcy Issues Same-Sex Couples Face

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated May 25, 2022

So long as a couple is legally married, they can file bankruptcy together. And same-sex married couples who file bankruptcy are treated just like heterosexual married couples. They have the same right to file bankruptcy jointly and the same responsibility to list their spouse’s income and any community property in their bankruptcy forms.

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What Is Non-Exempt Equity?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Updated May 25, 2022

In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, there are exemptions to protect some of the equity you have in your assets, like a home, car, or household items. If the exemption for a certain item doesn’t cover all the equity you have in it, you have non-exempt equity. Depending on how much non-exempt you have, the bankruptcy trustee may liquidate (sell) the item and give the proceeds to your creditors.

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What Is a Debt Management Plan?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 17, 2022

A debt management plan allows you to combine your debts and make one monthly payment with a lower interest rate. It's set up by a credit counselor and usually takes 3-5 years to complete. Only certain kinds of debt, such as credit card debt, can be included in a DMP. If you have a lot of debt that's secured by collateral (like a house or car loan), a DMP may not be the best option. But you can look into other debt relief options including filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

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What Is a Debt Management Plan?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 17, 2022

A debt management plan allows you to combine your debts and make one monthly payment with a lower interest rate. It's set up by a credit counselor and usually takes 3-5 years to complete. Only certain kinds of debt, such as credit card debt, can be included in a DMP. If you have a lot of debt that's secured by collateral (like a house or car loan), a DMP may not be the best option. But you can look into other debt relief options including filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

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What Is Debt Settlement?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 13, 2022

Debt settlement is a type of debt relief. If a creditor agrees to a debt settlement, you make a lump-sum payment for less than the total debt you owe and they forgive the rest. This can work well if you have a large sum of cash at hand. But many who've fallen behind on paying their debts don’t. If you try to save up money to settle a debt, you'll hurt your credit in the meantime if you stop making your debt payments.

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What Is Debt Settlement?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 13, 2022

Debt settlement is a type of debt relief. If a creditor agrees to a debt settlement, you make a lump-sum payment for less than the total debt you owe and they forgive the rest. This can work well if you have a large sum of cash at hand. But many who've fallen behind on paying their debts don’t. If you try to save up money to settle a debt, you'll hurt your credit in the meantime if you stop making your debt payments.

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What You Need To Know About Divorce and Bankruptcy

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 11, 2022

If you and your spouse get along, you can file Chapter 7 together before you get divorced. Doing so means you'll benefit from larger exemptions and you can wipe out marital debt to ease the divorce process. If you don't get along well, you may want to get divorced first and file your case individually later. Once you file your bankruptcy case, the automatic stay goes into effect, which will delay your divorce proceeding.

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What Is Debt Consolidation?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 11, 2022

Debt consolidation is when you combine multiple debts into one. The goal of consolidating your debt is to reduce your monthly payment and get a lower interest rate. It also simplifies your debt repayment, so you're less likely to miss payments each month. Debt consolidation loans and credit card balance transfers are two common types of debt consolidation.

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What Is Debt Consolidation?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 11, 2022

Debt consolidation is when you combine multiple debts into one. The goal of consolidating your debt is to reduce your monthly payment and get a lower interest rate. It also simplifies your debt repayment, so you're less likely to miss payments each month. Debt consolidation loans and credit card balance transfers are two common types of debt consolidation.

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Debt Collection After a Bankruptcy Discharge

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated May 9, 2022

A bankruptcy discharge order is a court order that stops creditors from ever being able to collect on dischargeable debts. Despite this powerful court order, some collection agencies or creditors try to collect on discharged debts, which is illegal. It’s important to know which debts creditors can still contact you about after bankruptcy and how to stop debt collectors that violate the discharge order.

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What Is Equity?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 4, 2022

Your equity in a house or car (the dollar value that belongs to you, not the lender) is the current value of the property minus the amount you still owe on it. When you file bankruptcy, exemptions protect the equity you have in certain assets.

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What To Expect at Your 341 Meeting of Creditors

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated May 4, 2022

In your 341 meeting of creditors, the trustee in your case will verify your identity and the information in your bankruptcy petition. Creditors can also show up to ask questions, but this is rare. In this article and video, we’ll walk you through a typical 341 meeting of creditors in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

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How Does Bankruptcy Affect Alimony?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney John Coble
Updated May 4, 2022

Alimony impacts your bankruptcy case differently if you’re paying alimony than if you’re receiving alimony. If you pay alimony, you must list it on your Schedule J as an expense. You must also usually continue to make payments while your case is pending and after you receive your bankruptcy discharge. Bankruptcy doesn’t eliminate your obligation to pay court-ordered alimony. If you receive alimony, you must list the amount as income on Schedule I and on the means test calculation form.

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What Happens After the 341 Meeting of Creditors?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney John Coble
Updated May 4, 2022

Completing your meeting of creditors is a milestone in the bankruptcy process. But you still need to finish your financial management course and submit your certificate of completion to the court (if you haven't already). You also have to wait for some court-required deadlines to pass and comply with any information requests from your trustee. Though it won't apply to every filer, if you have an installment payment plan for the court filing fee or you're entering into a reaffirmation agreement with a creditor, you'll need to follow up on those as well.

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Is Filing for Bankruptcy Bad?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney John Coble
Updated May 4, 2022

Bankruptcy has gotten a negative reputation over the years. But there are many benefits to filing for bankruptcy that don't get as much attention as the drawbacks. Depending on your situation, filing bankruptcy can sometimes be the best course of action.

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What Is the 341 Meeting of Creditors?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney John Coble
Updated April 29, 2022

The 341 meeting of creditors is a required meeting between a bankruptcy filer, the bankruptcy trustee, and sometimes creditors. It's an informal hearing held in a meeting room, not a courtroom. No judge is present. The main purpose of the meeting is for the trustee to verify the bankruptcy filer's identity and the information in their bankruptcy forms. Creditors can also attend and ask questions, but this isn't common in Chapter 7 cases.

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COVID-19 and Bankruptcy: Frequently Asked Questions

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated April 21, 2022

The Bankruptcy Court has been closely monitoring and following recommended guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local public health officials and preparedness guidelines from the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts (AO) regarding COVID-19 and is releasing updates almost daily. This article provides some guidance for frequently asked questions.

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Laws Protecting Californians From Debt Collectors

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 12, 2022

Debt collection laws come from federal and state governments. California has chosen to put extra laws into place to protect California residents. The Rosenthal Act is one such law. There is also a federal law, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, that protects consumers across the United States. Keep reading to learn more about California debt collection laws and how they protect you.

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How to Pay Off Credit Card Debt When You Have No Money

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 12, 2022

There are a number of strategies to put in place when you find yourself in credit card debt. Common advice includes tightening your budget, prioritizing your highest-interest accounts and negotiating with creditors. But those strategies only work if you actually have some money to put toward paying down your credit card debt. What are you supposed to do if you truly have little to no money to put toward your debt?

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What Are the Michigan Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 1, 2022

Michigan allows residents to choose between the federal bankruptcy exemptions and state exemptions.

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What Are the Oregon Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 1, 2022

There is some good news for Oregonians who are looking to file for bankruptcy protection in the state. Note that now there are 2 separate systems of bankruptcy exemptions to protect Oregon filers in bankruptcy. The Governor signed a significant law on July 1, 2013, that now allows individuals filing either Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy in the state to elect to use federal bankruptcy exemptions. It is a huge change to the bankruptcy process in Oregon with a substantial impact on bankruptcy cases now being filed.

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What Are the Wisconsin Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 1, 2022

You will find a list of available exemptions in the federal Bankruptcy Code, or you may instead decide to use exemptions available under Wisconsin law. However, keep in mind that each state has the option of “opting out” of this scheme. Bankruptcy filers in an opt-out state may only use their state exemptions and not use the federal exemptions. As Wisconsin hasn’t opted out of the choice between state exemptions and federal exemptions, Wisconsinites who file bankruptcy can choose between federal bankruptcy exemptions or state exemptions. Actually, you will be happy to know that Wisconsin is one of the few US states that allows filers this choice, and this is a real advantage if you are filing Chapter 7 in the state. However, keep in mind that you are not allowed to cherry-pick exemptions from both lists; you can select only one set of exemptions. If you’re using Wisconsin law to exempt your property, you can also use the federal nonbankruptcy exemptions, if applicable. This also means that if you’re filing for bankruptcy in the state, you should review both sets of exemptions and then choose what scheme can best protect your property. Hiring an attorney can be helpful in this respect.

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What Are the Colorado Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 1, 2022

Bankruptcy exemptions help bankruptcy filers protect the property they own so they don't have to start over with nothing after their debts are discharged. Colorado has opted out of the federal bankruptcy exemptions, so residents must use the state exemptions instead. Fortunately, Colorado has generous bankruptcy exemptions.

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How Much Debt Do I Need To File for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 31, 2022

Bankruptcy laws don't specify a minimum debt requirement to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. As long as you qualify to file and meet all the requirements, you can file Chapter 7 and have your dischargeable debts wiped away.

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Will a Foreclosure Ruin My Credit Forever?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 31, 2022

A foreclosure will stay on your credit report for seven years, but your creditworthiness will not be negative forever. You can take steps to repair your credit after foreclosure and start building a positive credit history. Read more to learn how you can overcome a foreclosure, rebuild your credit history, and what steps you can take to buy a house after foreclosure.

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Bankruptcy and the Homestead Exemption

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 31, 2022

Bankruptcy exemptions play an important role in Chapter 7 cases, and the homestead exemption may be the most important of all. It’s the homestead exemption that makes it possible for many people to wipe out unsecured debt in Chapter 7 bankruptcy without losing their homes. In this article, you’ll learn how the homestead exemption may protect your house in bankruptcy. We’ll also touch on some of the limitations of the homestead exemption. And, we’ll discuss alternatives for people who aren’t fully protected by their state’s exemptions.

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What Are the Ohio Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 31, 2022

If you’re filing bankruptcy in Ohio, you must use the state’s exemptions to protect your property. Ohioans aren’t allowed to use the federal bankruptcy exemptions. Ohio has a homestead, motor vehicle, and wildcard exemption. It also has exemptions for various kinds of personal property and money benefits.

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What Are the Texas Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 31, 2022

Texas has more generous bankruptcy exemptions than many other states. It also allows bankruptcy filers to choose whether they want to use the Texas state bankruptcy exemptions or the federal bankruptcy exemptions. In many cases, the state exemptions are more beneficial to bankruptcy filers who own a home or car. But unlike the federal exemptions, Texas doesn’t offer a wildcard exemption to protect personal property of your choosing.

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Does Bankruptcy Clear Judgments?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 29, 2022

When a creditor or debt collector gets a judgment against you, it's dischargeable as long as the original debt was dischargeable. The question becomes a bit more complicated if the creditor gets a judgment lien on your property. Here’s how it works.

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What Is Post-Petition Debt?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated March 29, 2022

Debt you acquire after you file your bankruptcy petition is called post-petition debt. Post-petition debt won't be discharged in your bankruptcy. But post-petition debt isn't the same as debt you forgot to include on your bankruptcy forms.

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California Bankruptcy Exemptions Explained

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 21, 2022

Some states permit filers to choose between a set of federal bankruptcy exemptions and the state exemption system. However, California isn’t one of them. California is called an “opt-out” state, which means federal bankruptcy exemptions are not available to filers in the state. Californians filing bankruptcy have to use California exemption law.

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How Do I Find an Affordable Bankruptcy Attorney?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 21, 2022

While you don’t have to hire a lawyer to file a bankruptcy case, you may want legal assistance. If so, there are several resources you can use to find an affordable bankruptcy attorney, including your state bar association’s website, the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, or a local legal aid organization. Many bankruptcy lawyers also offer a free consultation for prospective clients. You can get free legal advice during the consultation and learn more about the lawyer’s fees and options for paying them.

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Why Do I Keep Getting Calls About Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 8, 2022

This article will explain why you may be getting calls from your student loan lender or loan servicer. If you have unpaid student loans, you may be contacted by a loan servicer for different reasons.

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Should You Surrender an Unwanted Car in Bankruptcy?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated February 28, 2022

If you’re financing a car with a car loan, you’ll need to decide how to deal with it when you file bankruptcy. If the payments are too high or you simply want to get rid of the car and the loan, you can surrender the vehicle back to the lender and have the debt discharged as part of your bankruptcy case. Often, the lender will pick up the car or schedule a mutually agreeable place to meet. If they don’t, you may need to seek legal help.

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What Is Credit Counseling?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated February 22, 2022

Credit counseling is not a debt relief solution in itself. Instead, it’s a starting point for people who are looking for the right solution.

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Can I File Bankruptcy Even Though I’m Unemployed?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated February 22, 2022

If you’re unemployed and your only source of income is unemployment benefits, you can still file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. To file Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you need a steady source of income, and unemployment benefits aren’t likely enough to cover the requirements for Chapter 13. While it’s possible and common for people to file Chapter 7 while unemployed, you’ll want to consider the timing of your case.

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What Is My Bankruptcy Discharge Date?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated February 22, 2022

The ultimate goal of bankruptcy is to get a discharge order, which wipes out debts like credit cards and medical bills. Along with your bankruptcy case number, keep your discharge date handy in case you’re contacted about a debt that was discharged.

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Can My Spouse Be Pursued for My Debts?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated January 27, 2022

A judgment is a court order declaring that you do owe the debt and must repay it. How all of this can affect your spouse, if you are married, largely depends on whether you reside in a common law or community property state and the judgment-debtor laws of your state.

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What Are the Illinois Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated January 5, 2022

If you have done a bit of research on bankruptcy cases in Illinois or exempt property, you will probably have come across the terms federal bankruptcy exemptions and state exemptions. Many states in the US allow people to choose between the federal exemptions and state exemptions. However, you don’t have that option in Illinois. In Illinois, you are not permitted to use the federal bankruptcy exemptions if you’ve lived in the state for at least 2 years when you file bankruptcy. Fortunately, Illinois has generous bankruptcy exemptions that can protect your property.

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The 8 Best Ways To Pay Off Student Loan Debt

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated January 4, 2022

While there’s no one-size-fits-all way to repay student loans. Recent research shows that the best way to pay off your student loans may be by paying down loans quickly at first and then signing up for an income-driven repayment plan if you qualify. But there are several other steps you can take to speed up the process, including making more than the minimum monthly payment, enrolling in autopay, and starting a side hustle. This article covers eight great tips to pay off student loan debt fast.

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What You Can Expect if You Don't Pay Your Student Loan Debt

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 31, 2021

Ignoring student loan debt can affect almost every area of your life, including your credit score, your ability to find employment, and your emotional well-being. This article covers the repayment timeline for federal and private student loans and looks at the consequences of paying your loan late or missing payments. We’ll also discuss what options you have if you’re struggling to make your loan payments.

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8 Strategies To Lower Your Student Loan Payments

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 31, 2021

If you’re struggling to pay off student loan debt, you may want to look into lowering your student loan payment. Getting a lower monthly payment can help tremendously, and there are many options to do this. Some strategies for achieving this include signing up for an income-driven, graduated, or extended repayment plan; enrolling in autopay; refinancing your student loans; consolidating your federal student loans; applying for deferment or forbearance; and requesting a temporary payment decrease or deferral if you have a private student loan. The best option for you depends on your financial goals and the type of loans you have. This article will go into detail about each of them.

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7 Options if You Can’t Make Your Student Loan Payments

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 31, 2021

Student loan default can have serious financial consequences and wreck your finances. If your student loans are coming due and you can’t afford the payments, don’t panic. You can take steps to avoid defaulting on your student loans. We’ll outline some of your options in this article.

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How Long Can I Stay in My Home After a Foreclosure Sale?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 31, 2021

In this article, we’ll give you an overview of foreclosure, discuss the before and after of a foreclosure sale, and give you valuable information about foreclosure timelines so you can get a better idea of how long you can stay in your home while planning your eventual move.

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Average Time To Pay Off Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 31, 2021

There are two types of student loans — federal student loans and private loans. The time it takes to repay your loans depends on the type of loan as well as the loan repayment plan you have. This article explains the average time it takes to pay off student loans and what options you have to refinance or get a loan deferment or forbearance. We’ll also offer tips for how to pay off your student loans more quickly and get out of debt.

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Eviction 101

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 31, 2021

Like most property laws, the relationship between landlords and tenants is regulated by state law. Because eviction laws vary from state to state, there is no uniform law of eviction. These state eviction laws lay out rules that landlords must follow in order to evict tenants. This article will explain some basic facts about eviction.

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Bad Credit: The Problem & Solutions

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 31, 2021

It is possible to increase your credit score if you are proactive. This article will look at what’s considered a poor credit score, the consequences of having bad credit, and strategies to improve your credit.

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How a Short Sale Could Affect Your Credit

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 13, 2021

Short sales allow homeowners to avoid foreclosure and escape a situation where they owe more than their homes are worth, but a short sale will still generally have a negative impact on your credit score. This article will explain what a short sale is, how it can affect your credit, and how to repair your credit after a short sale.

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U.S. Bankruptcy by the Numbers: Who Is Filing the Most Bankruptcies?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 12, 2021

Individuals, businesses, and even cities file for bankruptcy. Both wealthy and financially strapped Americans may need to file for bankruptcy due to a variety of circumstances. Even rich, powerful people take advantage of this opportunity for debt relief.

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The Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 12, 2021

In Florida, you have even more protections from unfair collection practices than you would in other states. The Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA) works with the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act to help limit phone calls, threatening letters, and other types of unfair actions from collection agencies and other types of debt collectors. It protects Florida consumers and gives them the right to sue debt collectors that have violated the FCCPA. Keep reading to learn more about the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act and your rights under federal and state consumer protection laws.

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What Is Bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 12, 2021

Bankruptcy is a legal tool to obtain debt relief and get a fresh start. Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy are the most common types. This article explores consumer bankruptcy basics, the different types of bankruptcy, and the bankruptcy process overall.

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How To Deal With Debt Collectors (When You Can’t Pay)

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 11, 2021

If you’re receiving calls from debt collectors about unpaid debt, there’s an obvious way to make it go away: Pay off the debt in question. But what if you’re at a point where it’s impossible for you to pay? It might seem like you’re out of options, but don’t despair — there’s a way out of this.

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What Happens if You Ignore Debt Collectors?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 11, 2021

Most of us don’t like talking to debt collectors. Anxiety over past-due bills runs high enough. No one wants the added pressure of collection calls and threatening letters. To make matters worse, many people who have collection accounts feel powerless. When there isn’t enough money to go around, it may seem pointless to pick up the phone and talk to a collection agency. Even talking with an original creditor can be tough once your account moves into collection status. Fortunately, you have options for taking charge of your debt and rebuilding financial security. Upsolve is here to help you find the information you need to make the right decision for you and your family.

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What Is A Charge Off On A Car Loan?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 11, 2021

A charge-off on a car loan is when the creditor declares the debt uncollectible. The creditor can still collect the charged-off debt and you still owe it.

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Getting Rid of Student Loans: 6 Options To Consider

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 9, 2021

If you are trying to manage a student loan debt, you might be disappointed to learn that they aren't often discharged through bankruptcy, but there are other options for student loan management you could be eligible for, including loan forgiveness or cancellation, disability discharge, or forbearance. Read this article to learn which option might be best for you to pursue and other things to consider.

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Repossession: The Basics

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 8, 2021

Repossession is when a lender takes back property that was used as collateral for a loan. If you’re behind on your car loan payments, you could suddenly lose your car, boat, appliances, or furniture without warning through repossession. On top of that, having a repossession on your credit report will hurt your credit score. Read this article to learn more about the repossession process and how you can get back on track.

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What Is the Process of a Nonjudicial Foreclosure?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 3, 2021

Most states allow nonjudicial foreclosures, which permit states to proceed with foreclosure sales without first obtaining a court order. Because nonjudicial foreclosures are much faster and less complex, homeowners don’t have as much time to defend against these actions.

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Writing a Debt Settlement Offer Letter

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 30, 2021

A debt settlement offer letter serves as a borrower's offer of some sum of money to a creditor in exchange for forgiveness of the remainder of the debt. The proposal in your debt settlement is a legal contract offer, so it is important to use precise language, such as the language provided in the template section of this article.

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How Can Bankruptcy Help You With Foreclosure?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 30, 2021

Filing for bankruptcy will stop foreclosure proceedings temporarily due to the benefits of the automatic stay. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy may allow you to keep your home by allowing you to make up your past-due payments via a 3-5 year repayment plan.

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Stop Debt Collectors With a Cease and Desist Letter

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 30, 2021

You have the right to demand that a third-party debt collector stop communicating with you about your debt. It’s important that you make this demand to cease communication in writing so that you have proof of your efforts. This article explains how to write a cease and desist letter that tells a debt collection agency not to contact you anymore. It includes a sample cease and desist letter for easy reference.

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Is It a Good Idea To Lease To Own a Car?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 30, 2021

A lease-to-own or rent-to-own program allows a borrower to make installment payments on a vehicle over the term of the lease. Once all the payments have been made (per the terms of the lease), the borrower assumes ownership of the vehicle. The dealer holds title to the car or truck in a lease-to-own agreement while the borrower (lessee) continues to make payments. These arrangements can particularly benefit borrowers who have bad credit, as these borrowers may not qualify for traditional leases. As these agreements tend to be expensive, it is important to understand the terms of any such contract before entering into one.

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Bankruptcy Basics: What Is Bankruptcy & How Do I File?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 29, 2021

In a nutshell, a bankruptcy case is a legal course of action that puts your debt behind you so you can get a fresh start. This article will give you a short explainer on bankruptcy basics, including what types of cases you can file, how to file bankruptcy, and what to expect from the bankruptcy process.

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Loans For Unemployed: Options & Processes

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 29, 2021

This article will discuss one of the ways that you can deal with the loss of a job—an emergency loan. Although you may think your employment status directly affects your ability to get a personal loan, especially in an emergency, that isn’t always true. In this article, we’ll talk about your options and the procedures for getting an emergency loan when you are unemployed.

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Information on My Credit Report Was Removed. Now It’s Back!

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 29, 2021

Disputing and removing incorrect information on your credit report can be tedious and time-consuming. So having one of these items reappear on your credit report can be frustrating. This information may have negatively affected your credit and even cost you money. So now that you’ve had this “blast from the past” reappear, what do you do? This article will help you understand when items can be legitimately reinserted onto your credit history and credit profile. It will also help explain how to do credit repair and remove illegitimate items once again from your credit report.

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Student Loan Forgiveness for Borrowers Who Drop Out

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 29, 2021

If you’re struggling to make student loan payments after dropping out of your degree program, it’s important to understand your options. Student loan forgiveness, deferment, forbearance, income-based repayment, and other programs can be confusing. This article offers a basic overview to help you get started.

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Staying in Your Home During and After Foreclosure

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 29, 2021

As long as the title to a house that hasn't been condemned remains in the homeowner's name, they may continue to live in that house. After a foreclosure has been finalized, if the former owner doesn't redeem their house, they'll have a limited amount of time to live there before they must move or risk formal eviction.

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How Does a Tax Lien Foreclosure Work?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 29, 2021

Depending on where the property is located, past-due property taxes may lead to a tax lien foreclosure or a tax deed sale. The tax lien foreclosure process includes some additional protection for property owners. But, the bottom line is the same. If your property taxes are delinquent, you could lose your property to a tax lien foreclosure or tax deed sale—even if your mortgage has been paid in full.

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Foreclosures & Eviction Protections Under The CARES Act

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

As Americans struggle to cope with the financial uncertainty caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the United States Congress has passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Among other things, the CARES Act protects borrowers of federally backed mortgage loans from foreclosure. This article will discuss the foreclosure protections, moratorium on evictions, and other mortgage relief implemented by the CARES Act.

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Student Loan Forgiveness Programs for Nurses

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

In this article, you will learn about student loan forgiveness programs available to nurses. Loan forgiveness eligibility qualifies you to have your loan eliminated. Forgiveness programs are only available for federal loans. The following will guide you on how you can reduce or eliminate your student loan debt if you are a nurse.

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Student Loan Forgiveness Options For Healthcare Workers

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

If you are a healthcare worker, you may qualify for federal student loan forgiveness. Learn how to find out if you are eligible for these programs, about the different types of debt relief, and other debt relief options that may be available to you.

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3 Important Facts About Student Loans & Garnishment

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

After 9 months of missed payments, your federal student loan will go into default, making a garnishment likely. For private student loans, default happens much sooner. Keep reading to learn three facts about student loan garnishment that could help you keep your take-home pay and tax refund.

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What’s the Best Student Loan Repayment Plan?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

The best federal student loan repayment plan is the plan that works for you. You'll automatically start out in the standard repayment plan, but you'll have the ability to change to a student loan repayment plan that's based on your income.

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4 Income-Based Repayment Options for Federal Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

There are four different income-driven repayment plans for student loan borrowers that received federal student aid. The IBR Plan, the REPAYE Plan, the PAYE Plan, and the ICR Plan. They each have different eligibility requirements and potential benefits compared to the standard repayment plan.

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Income Contingent Repayment for Federal Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

Federal student loan borrowers have 4 income-driven repayment options. The ICR Plan is one such option if you are struggling with your student loans. . An ICR Plan is for two types of borrowers. In this article, you will learn about the Income Contingent Repayment (ICR) Plan.

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How to Remove Collection Accounts From Your Credit Report

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 28, 2021

You have a legal right to dispute debt reported by collection agencies and debt collectors. You can ask for validation or that it be removed from your credit report.

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Pros & Cons of Debt Settlement

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 26, 2021

There are pros and cons to most financial decisions. And debt settlement is no exception. Debt settlement helps you pay off old debt, but it can also hurt your credit score. You need a good credit score to get a credit card, auto loan, mortgage, and sometimes even a job. How are you supposed to get ahead if paying off your debt sets you further behind? In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the pros and cons of debt settlement, so you can decide what’s best for you.

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Florida Repossession Law

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 26, 2021

If you’re in Florida and your car has been repossessed, you still have the opportunity to redeem your car or reaffirm your loan. You can also file bankruptcy to help you keep your car, or to help you get rid of future collection activity on a deficiency balance.

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Relief for Homeowners Facing Foreclosure in the COVID-19 Era

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 26, 2021

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, both federal and state foreclosure moratoriums have aided homeowners who are at risk of foreclosure. It is important to remain informed about COVID-era protections for homeowners as they evolve.

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Guide to Consolidating Federal Student Loans

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 26, 2021

Consolidating federal student loans streamlines the repayment process and may save you money. Here’s what you need to know to make informed decisions about consolidation.

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Can I Refinance My Student Loans?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 26, 2021

When you refinance your student loans, you take out a new loan and use it to pay off your existing student loans. Refinancing may allow you to benefit from a lower interest rate and/or reduce monthly payments.

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Should I Inform My Tax Preparer About My Bankruptcy Case?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 18, 2021

Yes, you should tell your tax preparer about your bankruptcy filing. Your bankruptcy trustee may need to give you special instructions that your tax prepare will need to follow if you're getting a refund check. You tax preparer will need to know about this before they file your return.

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