The Complete Book on Bankruptcy

By respected consumer bankruptcy attorney

Peter Francis Geraci J.D.

Chapter 1
How to have a Stress-Free Bankruptcy

Chapter 2
What is Bankruptcy

Chapter 3
What causes people to need Banruptcy Relief

Chapter 4
What is the procedure?

Chapter 5
When you should consider Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 plans?

Chapter 6
What can Bankruptcy do for you?

Chapter 7
Common Misunderstandings about Bankruptcy

Chapter 8
Is Bankruptcy Bad?

Chapter 9
What does Bankruptcy cost?

Chapter 10
Can I file without my spouse?

Chapter 11
Does my Employer know if I file Bankruptcy?

Chapter 12
Do I lose anything?

Chapter 13
Does Bankruptcy "Ruin my Credit"

Chapter 14
Can I keep bills off my bankruptcy

Chapter 15
Bills or property in someone else's name or posession

Chapter 16
What about the Credit Union?

Chapter 17
Co-Signers

Chapter 18
What about my car?

Chapter 19
What about my House?

Chapter 20
When do creditors stop bothering me?

Chapter 21
What are Cross-collateralization Agreements?

Chapter 22
Joint Accounts with Parents

Chapter 23
When do I stop paying creditors?

Chapter 24
Gas, Electric & Phone Bills

Chapter 25
Bankruptcy & Divorce, Alimony & Child Support

Chapter 26
What Bankruptcy won't solve

Chapter 27
Chapter 13 Debt repyament Plans

Chapter 28
Will I be able to get credit again?

Chapter 29
Bill Consolidation Loans

Chapter 30
Bill Consolidation

Chapter 31
Wage Assignments, Deductions and Levies

Chapter 32
Student Loans

Chapter 33
Can I get rid of Taxes

Chapter 34
NSF Checks, Traffic & Parking Tickets

Chapter 35
Surrendering Real Estate & Time Shares

Chapter 36
Business Bankruptcy

Chapter 37
Professional Persons

Chapter 38
Do you ever "Not Get" a Discharge?

Chapter 39
About Geraci Law LLC and Peter Francis Geraci

Chapter 40
Who is the best Bankruptcy lawyer near me?

Chapter 41
What if I need a Bankruptcy lawyer near me?

CHAPTER #7 COMMON MISUNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT BANKRUPTCY?

_____ I'll lose my car. NO. The only people who lose cars are those who want to give them back. We can tell you in advance if there is a problem with your car. Most people get rid of their bills, but keep their car.

_____ I'll lose my house. NO. No one files a bankruptcy to lose anything. Your attorney calculates your net equity in your house and determines what kind of bankruptcy will help you keep your house while dealing with your other bills. You don't lose your house.

_____ What about 7 years? THERE IS NO SUCH THING. You cannot file another bankruptcy Chapter 7 for 8 years after the last one, but you can start fresh and apply for credit as soon as you are discharged of your debt. There is no 7 year waiting period to start over. You can apply for new loans even during a bankruptcy. You can also file Chapter 13 immediately after Chapter 7.

_____ If I filed Chapter 7 before, Can I file Chapter 13? Yes. No waiting 8 yrs

_____ If I filed Chapter 13 before, Can I file Chapter 7 or another 13? Yes. You will need to know the date you filed each case, and whether it was discharged or dismissed.

_____ My credit will be bad. It probably is now. YOU HAVE TOO MUCH CREDIT, NOT GOOD CREDIT. Your credit (ability to borrow more money) is probably bad now, because you have too many bills and are only paying interest. After a bankruptcy, you have no bills, usually, except house or car payments. You can start to rebuild your credit. It won't be good again until you have some money saved, and re-establish a good record of repayment. Everyone who asks this question has already ruined their credit! But your "credit" is usually better faster if you filed for some relief under the bankruptcy laws and get rid of your bills and save some money in your bank account.

_____ I'm afraid. NO. Bankruptcy proceedings are very low pressure. Many times, there is not even any appearance in court.

_____ Everyone will know. NO. Except in very small towns, no one cares. Notice goes to creditors only.

_____ My credit union will hate me. Sometimes. If you have a co-signer, you will just keep up your same payments. If you just have a charge card or personal loan from your credit union, you can stop your payroll deduction, and treat them just like any other creditor. They have no connection to your employment, other than they may rent space at your place of employment.

_____ I'll never get credit again. NO. Unfortunately, there are plenty of finance companies ready to lend you more money as soon as you get a fresh start.

_____ I'll never be able to buy a home. NO. You certainly can't buy one now, can you? And if you don't get rid of your debt, you never will be able to save the down payment. Terms are stricter after a bankruptcy, but plenty of people are accepted for home mortgages after bankruptcies.

_____ The attorney fees are expensive. NO. They are often the smallest part of the picture. The only court cost in a Chapter 7 is $274.00, and we can accept our fees in installments. If you are getting rid of your bills, it will be very easy to pay a lawyer. Most people open a file with my office with $150 or $200 down, and pay our fees in installments over the next 6 or 8 paychecks.

_____ I'll never get a bank account. NO. If you have a checking or savings account now, you can keep it. If you don't have one, you may have a problem because banks are getting real picky about opening accounts for people with no money. So if you don't have an account now, we suggest you open one BEFORE you file a bankruptcy.

_____ It takes a long time. MAYBE. Chapter 13 repayment plans last 3 to 5 years, but Chapter 7 proceedings are generally closed within 6 months, so you can start fresh then.

_____ I can go to just any lawyer and do a bankruptcy. NO. You want a real bankruptcy attorney who does it every day, because it requires specialized knowledge. If the lawyer does not do bankruptcy work every day, he or she may not want to keep up with the latest developments in the law. We recommend asking any lawyer you may want to represent you, the questions in our brochure under "QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR LAWYER ABOUT HIS KNOWLEDGE OF BANKRUPTCY"

_____ I will lose everything. NO. No one does a bankruptcy to lose anything except their bills. Your attorney can tell you in advance if the value of your goods is more or less than your allowed exemptions from creditors. No one will take your sofa or television, and no