This is what is often referred to as a liquidation bankruptcy. This type of bankruptcy is usually completed in roughly six months. Filing a Chapter 7 will eliminate most unsecured debts. In order to file a Chapter 7 and retain your home and/or your cars you must be current on all mortgage loans or auto loans. Also, you cannot have a lot of equity in your real estate or personal property, as this could cause you to lose the property to your creditors. While some people easily quality for a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, some do not. In order to qualify your income must fall below a median income guidelines for the state that you reside. Now, even if you make more than the median income, it does not mean you will not qualify; however, it is necessary for a financial analysis. During this financial analysis an attorney will review your household income for the previous six months to see if after all reasonable and necessary expenses are paid each month, you could qualify for a Chapter 7.
Should you qualify for a Chapter 7 you would not be in a long standing repayment plan. At the discharge of your case, all unsecured debts would be eliminate, with some limited exceptions.
Should you wish to retain cars with loans and real estate with mortgage loans, you may have to consider a Reaffirmation agreement with the Creditor. This is essentially a document that continues your personal liability on the loan, which means if you default after your bankruptcy discharge they could personally sue you for any default. It is very important to discuss the reaffirmation options with your attorney and decide if it is actually a good idea. Many times, a Debtor can choose not reaffirm the personal liability to the debt, keep making the payments, and still retain the property. This is because most contracts define default for a repossession or foreclosure to mean failing to insure the property, failing to pay taxes, and/or failing to make the scheduled monthly payment.
Remember, everyone may want a Chapter 7 bankruptcy because generally the process is easier; however, not all people qualify for a Chapter 7. It is important to discuss all financial matters with an attorney to ensure all of your assets are protected and all of your creditors are listed.