When considering bankruptcy in Florida, it is important to seek the services of an experienced consumer bankruptcy attorney. That person will be interested in getting a discharge of the consumer's unsecured debts quickly and permanently when possible in a bankruptcy filing. Although the legal fee for a Chapter 7 must be paid prior to filing, it is often the best solution for consumers swimming in overwhelming unsecured debt.
Recent studies show that there is a practice that is gaining prevalence where the system seems to encourage filing a Chapter 13, which is a payment plan. This type of bankruptcy is not mandatory, however, and it only works when there is a home to be saved through monthly payments. It may work where there is an unusually high tax bill or other kind of secured or priority debt.
When it comes to large credit card debt and/or substantial medical bills, or any other debt that does not have collateral attached, the Chapter 7 is the remedy that will give a quick and permanent fresh start without payments continuing to weigh the consumer down. When primarily consumer unsecured debt is the subject of a Chapter 13 filing, monthly payments for three to five years will be required. Beware of that solution unless one is trying to save the home or there is another very special reason, as stated above, for filing the Chapter 13. The Chapter 13 is generally unnecessary for the consumer who is weighed down with exclusively unsecured debt.
The Chapter 13 for exclusively unsecured debt is similar to the debt consolidation and other private remedies that are offered outside of bankruptcy. These plans tend to perpetuate debt, and the debtors generally tend to be unable to finish the payment plan successfully. The individual or married couple struggling with unsecured credit cards, medical bills and personal loans will get total and immediate relief with a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, if they are otherwise qualified under the law's mandates. Consumers in Florida can obtain a free consultation with a seasoned consumer bankruptcy attorney to learn the options and rights that are available to them.
Source: theatlantic.com, "Caught in the Bankruptcy Feedback Loop", Paul Kiel, Sept. 27, 2017