Most individuals looking for debt relief through bankruptcy file under either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. There are distinct rules for filing under each chapter. Chapter 7 typically liquidates a person's assets in order to satisfy debt, while Chapter 13 requires some sort of income in order to repay at least a portion of the debt. Here is a by-the-numbers look at these two chapters and at bankruptcy in general.
* 619,069: The number of Chapter 7 bankruptcy filings in the United States in 2014, according to statistics from the United States Courts.
* 310,061: The number of Chapter 13 bankruptcy filings in the United States in 2014.
* 10,394: The total number of bankruptcy filings in the Massachusetts District in 2014. Of this number, 8,113 were Chapter 7 filings, and 2,163 were Chapter 13.
* 3 to 6 months: The time a Chapter 7 bankruptcy generally takes.
*5: There are five types of debt that cannot be discharged through Chapter 7 bankruptcy. These include recent income tax debt, court-ordered fines or penalties, child support, alimony payments, and most student loans.
* $125,000: The automatic homestead exemption for bankruptcy in Massachusetts. The declared homestead value is $500,000 for property you occupy or intend to occupy, according to Legal Consumer.
* $7,500: The automobile exemption under Massachusetts bankruptcy law. This amount increases to $15,000 if the automobile is used by an elderly or disabled driver.
* 85 percent: (Or 50 times the minimum wage.) The amount of gross income an individual may exempt from garnishment in a Massachusetts bankruptcy filing.
* 3 to 5 years: The time allowed under Chapter 13 bankruptcy for an individual to repay debts. A repayment plan detailing how the debt will be repaid during this time frame is a required part of the process.
* $1,149,525: The maximum amount of secured debt that one can have to be eligible to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. $383,175 is the maximum amount of unsecured debt allowed.
Of course, there is much more to know about bankruptcy than just the numbers, and a bankruptcy lawyer from Kovacs Law Office would love to discuss your options with you. Contact us for more information.