There are certain rules that dictate which form of bankruptcy you are eligible to file for under federal law. You may not be aware of the specific criteria for filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy in New Jersey – but that is where we come in. The highly experienced and successful Chapter 13 bankruptcy attorneys from Gillman, Bruton & Capone will analyze your financial situation and lay out your options so that you have some control in your future.

What Are the Criteria for a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is meant for individuals, and they can file solely or with their spouse. A corporation can only file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 11, although a person who is a sole proprietor of their business could file for Chapter 13. When you file for Chapter 13, you are required to show that you are receiving a regular income, which can include:

  • W-2 employment income
  • Self-employment income
  • 1099 income if you are an independent contractor
  • Social Security income
  • Pension income
  • Contributions from family members or friends
  • Alimony and child support

As long as you have some form of regular income, you would be eligible to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in New Jersey.

Necessary Documents to File for Bankruptcy

Our lawyers can only prepare a bankruptcy petition based on the information that they receive from clients. Prior to a consultation, you will get an email from us with a list of documents to put together for the meeting. Then, if you retain us after the consultation, you will get an additional list of documents that we may need based on the conversation we had.

Your bankruptcy filing can occur faster if you are prompt with getting us everything that we need so you can review and sign the petition. Many of the same documents that we require to prepare the petition are also going to be provided to the trustee after the case is filed. We cannot prosecute the case without these documents.

How Can This Process be Expedited?

All debtors must take a pre-petition credit counseling course, which is typically done online and will generally take 30 to 45 minutes to complete. You will get a certificate saying that you completed that course and we need that certificate in order to file. We cannot file a bankruptcy petition for anyone who has not completed the course. It is better to get that certificate right away than to have to worry about scheduling it in right before filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. We can provide an attorney access code to take this course.

The debtor should also pay the retainer as quickly as possible because we cannot file the bankruptcy without the retainer being paid in full. However, in Chapter 13 cases, the retainer payment due before filing does not have to include the full fee for the case as debtors can include attorney’s fees in their plan. We offer this opportunity to all Chapter 13 clients to allow them to get the benefits of filing as soon as possible.

Failing to Meet the Chapter 13 Criteria

If an individual in New Jersey does not meet the criteria to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, their other option would be a Chapter 7 filing. This would likely be the case if they do not currently have any income or their current income does not rise above a certain threshold. Assuming there is no other reason why this form of bankruptcy would not be an option, they would have the ability to file a Chapter 7 and discharge their debt. If an individual has too much income or too much in the way of assets, we may be able to get a better result for them if we try to negotiate with their creditors instead of filing the bankruptcy. Our team will discuss all options with you during your initial case evaluation.

Discuss the Criteria for a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy with Our New Jersey Attorneys

The prospect of filing for bankruptcy might seem daunting but our experienced bankruptcy attorneys will be your guide as you reorganize your debt. It is best to start preparing your documents as soon as possible before the filing so it occurs without issue. Call and schedule a free case evaluation where you can discuss the criteria for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in New Jersey.