Frequently Asked Questions

In the following information about frequently asked bankruptcy questions, the answers stated are general in nature and are not intended to apply to every bankruptcy and/or debt consolidation situation. Every bankruptcy case is different and carries its own set of circumstances which must be taken into consideration by competent legal counsel.

Contact the Avallone Law Associates to discuss the specifics of your situation with an experienced Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, bankruptcy attorney.

Will I be able to rent an apartment or house after I file for bankruptcy?

A landlord can legally refuse to rent you an apartment because of a bankruptcy. However, if you are presently renting a home or apartment, your present landlord will usually renew your lease without running a new credit report, and might not know that you filed for bankruptcy. Even if your landlord knows of your bankruptcy the landlord may renew your lease if you have a good history of paying your rent on time. If you are applying for a new lease, you may offer to make a larger security deposit to persuade a potential landlord to rent to you.

Will bankruptcy stop a lawsuit against me?

If you are being sued, strongly urge you to speak with a debt relief attorney at Avallone Law Associates, about filing for bankruptcy. A bankruptcy filing will stop a lawsuit immediately and prevent your creditors from placing a lien against your house or attaching your bank account. You must act quickly to preserve your rights and your property.

Will bankruptcy stop my home from being foreclosed and/or my car from being repossessed?

Bankruptcy can prevent a foreclosure of your house or a repossession of your car. An "automatic stay" arises by law the instant a bankruptcy is filed. The automatic stay stops the foreclosure process and prevents any collection actions such as repossessions or garnishments. Bankruptcy may also allow you to consolidate your mortgage arrears or automobile balance, and make payments on those debts over time through a repayment plan we design after a thorough analysis of your financial situation designed by an attorney at the Avallone Law Associates.

How do I rebuild my credit after filing for bankruptcy?

Although bankruptcy may appear on your credit report for up to 10 years, you can begin to reestablish your credit immediately after your bankruptcy discharge. Lenders will consider many factors while determining whether to extend credit to you, but the most important of all factors that they will consider is your debt-to-income ratio. Based on the credit scoring models currently used by the credit reporting agencies, a debtor's credit score often actually improves upon the filing of a bankruptcy because of the elimination of debt.

Who will know about my bankruptcy?

Parties that receive notice of a bankruptcy are your creditors, the Bankruptcy Court, the IRS and the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue. Bankruptcy is a public record, so anyone who wants to try to find out about your bankruptcy could do so.

I only want to file bankruptcy on certain creditors, but not on others. Is this possible?

No. You are required by law to list all of your creditors, including friends and family members who have loaned you money. Intentional failure to list a debt is a serious matter and could result in a denial of your entire bankruptcy discharge. However, you may voluntarily repay selected debts after you file for bankruptcy. Our attorneys can explain how you may legally repay any debt you want, after your bankruptcy is over, on a purely voluntary basis without a reaffirmation agreement. Contact us today.

What documents do I need to bring for my bankruptcy appointment?

In order to prepare consumer bankruptcy papers, a client must bring the following documents when meeting with their bankruptcy attorney:

  • A list of all creditors, including addresses, account/loan numbers and the amounts and description of each debt.

For all bills where you receive a monthly statement, you should bring the most recent statements. For each secured debt such as a car loan or home mortgage:

  • Copy of the latest statement showing the balance due on the debt
  • Income tax returns for the last two years, including W-2, 1099, and K-1 information
  • Copies of the last five pay stubs or copies of bank statements for the last 90 days showing the amount and frequency of the client's income
  • A detailed list of the debtor's monthly living expenses, i.e., food, clothing, housing, utilities, taxes, transportation, medicine, etc.
  • If self-employed, copies of monthly profit and loss statements for the past six months
  • Copies of any lawsuits or judgments, regardless of whether the client is a plaintiff or defendant
  • Copies of any family trusts or prenuptial agreements

Do I have to go to court?

You must attend a first meeting of creditors. Your attorney will be with you at this meeting. This meeting is held in a meeting room used by the bankruptcy trustees, not in court. These meetings are typically very short, sometimes as short as five minutes. The trustee will ask you questions about your bankruptcy filing and your financial condition. If any of your creditors are present, they can also ask questions. However, creditors rarely attend this hearing, however, you must attend at this hearing and failure to appear may eventually result in dismissal of your case.

Will bankruptcy get me out of child support or spousal support payments?

No. Child support payments and spousal support payments are not dischargeable in a bankruptcy proceeding.

Call Today: 215-253-3855

When you call, we are happy to speak to you about the bankruptcy process and address any concerns you may have about filing a bankruptcy. Our experienced staff will be happy to speak to you at no charge on the phone and spend time with you getting information about your situation and then advising you about whether a bankruptcy filing is appropriate and, if so, what type of bankruptcy would be appropriate to file. We can also answer any of your questions about bankruptcy filings once we have your basic information.

Should we decide together that a bankruptcy is appropriate and desirable, and we will make an appointment for you to meet with one of our attorneys to start the process. If you are interested in filing a bankruptcy or need information about bankruptcy filings, please feel free to call us or contact us by email.