Written by Attorney Karra Kingston.
Updated October 29, 2019
If you live in the suburban city of Long Neck and are overwhelmed by creditors calling your home, you have come to the right place. This Delaware bankruptcy guide will help you get out of debt by giving you the tools you need to file for bankruptcy. If you think you are the only person who has been in this situation, you are not. Many Americans have used bankruptcy as a tool to get back on their feet. Many successful Americans have filed for bankruptcy and bounced back. From Donald Trump, Mike Tyson, Walt Disney, Meat Loaf, Cyndi Lauper and last but not least, even Abraham Lincoln. Filing for bankruptcy gives people the chance to start fresh by getting their debts forgiven legally. The Bankruptcy Code was implemented to help people who couldn’t afford to pay back their debts. If you decide that bankruptcy is the right option for you, then you will have to see which Chapter of bankruptcy you will need to file. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy can eliminate your debts so that you can start enjoying your life again. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Long Neck is pretty straightforward and our guide will walk you through how the process works. If you think that a Chapter 7 is not the right bankruptcy for you then you can determine which kind of bankruptcy you should file by looking at your income, expenses, debts, and assets. Upsolve can help guide you through the process, including how to find bankruptcy help for free. If you search through our website, you will find all of the tools you need to file bankruptcy on your own.
Long Neck Bankruptcy Lawyers – Estimated Cost
You don’t need to hire a bankruptcy lawyer to help you get out of debt. Bankruptcy lawyers can be advantageous, however, because they can help fill out your forms and get you ready for Court. You are probably asking yourself “How much does a Long Neck bankruptcy lawyer cost?” A Long Neck bankruptcy attorney will probably run you $995-$1,450 for a standard Chapter 7 case. The cost of a bankruptcy lawyer depends on the nature of your case. Most lawyers charge a fixed fee but if your case requires more work because of the complexity of your situation, then it will likely be more. If you do plan to hire a lawyer, find one that you can talk to comfortably. If the cost to hire a lawyer is too high, we recommend you at least meet with one because many offer free consultations. They may even be able to show you how you can afford to pay their fees. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Long Neck is pretty straight-forward and quick. The steps below will guide you through the process.
How to File Bankruptcy in Long Neck, Delaware for Free
Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Long Neck can seem difficult. If you stay calm, follow the steps accordingly and immediately address any issues you run into, you will be fine! Use this guide as you work through the Delaware bankruptcy process to help answer your questions.
Collect Your Long Neck Bankruptcy Documents
Before getting the process started, you will need to collect all of your financial documents. Look through each one carefully and understand the financial situation that you are in. These documents will be used to answer the questions on your bankruptcy forms. You can start by collecting your credit report from Transunion, Experian or Equifax. Collecting your credit report is a good way to know how much debt you owe and who your creditors are. If you see names that you never heard of, don’t panic, it is probably a debt collection company that your original creditor sold your debt to. You will also need copies of all of your bank statements, taxes, paystubs, vehicle titles, property valuations, etc. to fill out your Long Neck bankruptcy forms. This could be stressful, so take your time. Spending time on this step will make the next steps much easier for you.
Take Credit Counseling
Once you have a full picture of your finances, you will need to complete a credit counseling course. This will need to be completed before you file your Long Neck bankruptcy documents with the Court. Everyone who files for bankruptcy must take a credit counseling course. The course will explain your various debt relief options, including bankruptcy. The fee for the course is usually between $10.00 and $50.00. If your household income is under 150% of the poverty line, then you can request a fee waiver. The one-hour course completion certificate expires after six months so make sure you take it right before you plan to file your Long Neck bankruptcy. You can complete this course at over the phone or online. A requirement that must be followed is that the course must be approved by the Department of Justice.
Complete the Bankruptcy Forms
This is the longest step. Completing the 23 separate Long Neck bankruptcy forms can seem long and tedious. You will have to take your time filling out roughly 75 pages. The forms will go into great detail about your finances including what you spend and own. If you did not hire a lawyer to help you complete your forms, then Upsolve can help you. You can use this Upsolve guide to complete all of the forms. Follow the directions carefully and make sure you don’t leave anything without an answer. If you have to dig around to find an answer, then do so. It’s better to put the work in now, rather than having to do it later after your trustee or the Court points out that information appears to be missing from your forms.
Get Your Filing Fee
You must pay the $335 filing fee in exact change when you file your Long Neck bankruptcy. The fee is required to be paid when you submit your documents for your Chapter 7 case. If you don’t make much money or are unemployed, you may qualify for a fee waiver. It is ultimately up to the Court to decide if your fee will be waived. If you are lucky enough to get the waiver, you won’t have to pay anything to file your Long Neck bankruptcy. If you are like most and are not eligible for a fee waiver, you can ask permission to pay the fee in installments. The Court will look at your income and expenses to decide what is reasonable when it comes to someone in your situation paying the filing fee.
Print Your Bankruptcy Forms
Once your Long Neck bankruptcy forms are prepared you will need to print them. The Court does not allow electronic filing by non-attorneys, so you will either have to mail everything in or go to the courthouse to file all of your forms. Keep in mind, that the Court will not accept any double-sided pages. Once the forms are printed remember to sign them. There are at least six spots you will need to sign so make sure you check everything over. If you don’t have a printer to print your forms, you will need to visit a public library, FedEx or Staples to print copies. Make sure to have some spare change with you to pay for printing.
Go to Court to File Your Forms
It is finally time to get your paperwork in to the Court system! Once you file your Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Long Neck, creditors will no longer be allowed to contact you. Going to the Delaware Bankruptcy Court in person is better than sending them through the mail so that the process can be done more quickly. The Court is open Monday through Friday and is located at 824 North Market Street in Wilmington. Once you get to the Court you will need to go to the Clerk’s office to file all of the forms for your Long Neck bankruptcy case. Make sure to bring your identification, your counseling course certificate, and money to pay the filing fees before you head down there.
Mail Documents to Your Trustee
The Trustee is an individual, usually an attorney, appointed by the Court to take over the details of your case to make sure everything you put on your papers looks accurate. The Trustee will send you a letter detailing all of the documents you need to send top their office. Make sure to send these documents quickly to give them time to review everything. Some of the documents they will ask you to mail are paystubs, tax returns, bank statements, valuations of property, vehicle titles, etc. The Trustee will do a careful review to make sure your answers match the financial documents. If you don’t send them the paperwork your Long Neck bankruptcy discharge may not be issued.
Take Bankruptcy Course 2
You will need to take another course after filing bankruptcy in Long Neck. This is another mandatory course that must be taken to receive your discharge order. This two-hour course will provide you with tips you can use to have a successful financial future. This course is called the Debtor Education Course and needs to be approved by the Bankruptcy Court. Again, you can take the course conveniently online or over the phone. This course will take approximately two hours to complete and will cost you around $10- $50.00. You should go over the course carefully as it can help you succeed financially after your bankruptcy. Once the course is completed you can file the certificate with the Court immediately.
Attend Your 341 Meeting
Whenever someone hears the word “Court” they usually freak out. Going to Court is not as scary as it sounds. When you go to your 341 meeting you will have an informal meeting between you and the Trustee assigned to your case. The Trustee will ask questions about the bankruptcy documents you submitted for your Long Neck bankruptcy. To prepare, you can review all of the forms you completed. You will need to bring your social security card and a photo ID when you go to Court. Dress casually but respectfully and stay calm. You should get a letter within two to three months stating that your debts are discharged. This means that you will not owe your creditors anything anymore.
Dealing with Your Car
You probably want to know what happens to your vehicle when you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Delaware. Exemptions allow you to keep your property. If your car doesn’t have too much equity then you may be able to keep your vehicle. If you took out loans on your vehicle you have different options. If you can afford to continue paying the loan, you can ask the Delaware Bankruptcy Court permission to enter into a reaffirmation agreement and keep your car. A reaffirmation agreement is an agreement you sign stating that the original loan terms will apply. Once the contract is signed you will be responsible for the balance owed, even though you filed bankruptcy in Long Neck. Another option is to redeem the car. This is where the lender gives you clear title to the car after you pay for its value; the rest of the loan is discharged. Your last option is surrendering your car back to the lender. If you can’t afford the payments or there is no equity in the vehicle then you can just let go of the car and you won’t be held responsible for what’s left on the loan.
Delaware Bankruptcy Means Test, Bankruptcy Forms, and Exemptions for Long Neck
Delaware Means Test
The Delaware bankruptcy Means Test looks at your income limits to determine if you qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Long Neck. Qualifying under the Delaware bankruptcy Means Test is extremely important. If you file and don’t qualify, your case will be dismissed. Calculating the Means Test can be challenging. If you need help, you can contact an attorney to help you make sure your figures are accurate before filing bankruptcy in Long Neck.
Median Income Levels for Delaware
Delaware Median Income Standards for Means Test for Cases Filed On or After May 1, 2020
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Poverty Levels for Delaware
Delaware Fee Waiver Eligibility for Cases Filed On or After May 1, 2020
Eligible for fee waiver when under 150% the poverty level.
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Delaware Bankruptcy Forms
Your Delaware bankruptcy forms will consist of 23 federal forms that will need to be completed. Read the directions over carefully to ensure accurate completion. The forms will consist of schedules in alphabetical order. These schedules will ask about your property, creditors, assets, and financial history. Make sure you specify which creditors you owe. If you leave a creditor out, they will not be notified of your Long Neck bankruptcy, filing which can be problematic in the future.
Certain property exemptions allow you to protect certain property when you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Long Neck. When a piece of property is exempt the Trustee can’t sell it to pay your creditors. This means anything that falls under an exemption you are allowed to keep. Delaware bankruptcy exemptions will help you keep your property away from creditors. Delaware only allows you to use Delaware bankruptcy exemptions, not the federal bankruptcy exemptions.