Ontario Bankruptcy Lawyers
Get Personalized & Effective Solutions to Your Debts
Our Ontario bankruptcy lawyers at Wadhwani & Shanfeld have more than 65 years of collective experience. During our careers, we have successfully handled some of the most complicated debt scenarios, and helped more than 20,000 clients. Whether you are looking to pursue Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, need foreclosure defense, alternatives to bankruptcy, or want to stop creditor harassment, we are here to assist you. Our ability to provide our clients with helpful counsel and elite representation has been consistently proven.
Our team is dedicated to a few basic principles that govern our approach to our clients:
- Professional excellence
- Client commitment
- Sophisticated counsel
- Results-driven advocacy
- Personalized solutions
If you are worried about repaying your debt and you want to look into debt relief options, we encourage you to call our team of Ontario bankruptcy attorneys as soon as possible. With a reputation for dependability and more than 20,000 satisfied clients throughout the state, Wadhwani & Shanfeld is a firm you can have confidence in. We even have an A+ accreditation from the Better Business Bureau, a rating that reflects our trustworthy business practices. Our team is prepared to help you find a customized solution to your debt dilemma.
Understanding Bankruptcy Filings & Their Potential Benefits
Filing for bankruptcy may be an effective solution if you’re struggling with debt. In certain cases, filing for bankruptcy can provide the fresh start and financial freedom that you need. Depending on the type of bankruptcy that’s filed, it may be possible to reduce or eliminate debts altogether. Bankruptcy also provides protection from creditors and allows a court-ordered repayment plan to be established if necessary.
Before you proceed with filing, it is important to understand the basics of bankruptcy and its impact on your future. In particular, we believe it is important to understand the potential benefits and drawbacks of filing for bankruptcy and how working with an experienced Ontario bankruptcy lawyer, like ours, can smooth the process.
What Is the Difference Between Chapter 7 & Chapter 13?
Chapter 7 bankruptcy is also called liquidation bankruptcy, and it enables people to discharge their unsecured debts (credit cards, medical bills, personal loans, etc.). Chapter 7 bankruptcy is also sometimes called debt elimination bankruptcy. This type of bankruptcy usually takes three-to-five months from start to finish and requires a means test to determine eligibility.
In contrast, Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a debt consolidation and reorganization plan that allows people to keep their assets while paying creditors over time through a repayment plan. With Chapter 13 filings, debt repayment plans typically run for three to five years, at the end of which the remaining qualified debt your carry will be discharged.
Note: filing for Chapter 7 may require you to surrender some of your assets; this includes large assets with significant equity (such as homes and vehicles). If you are concerned about retaining key asses, it is crucial that you discuss your bankruptcy filing options with an attorney, especially if you are considering a Chapter 7 filing.
What Is a Bankruptcy Means Test?
A bankruptcy means test is an assessment used by federal law to determine whether someone qualifies for Chapter 7 bankruptcy relief or if they must file under Chapter 13 instead. The test considers your average yearly income compared to the median income levels in your state. If your income falls below the median level, you will likely qualify for Chapter 7 relief (although other factors may apply, and you should consult with our attorneys to confirm you are eligible before filing).
If your income exceeds the median level, then it's possible you will need to file under Chapter 13, unless you can demonstrate special circumstances that would make it difficult for you to pay back at least part of your debt through a repayment plan over time.
Understanding Debt Reorganization & Repayment under Chapter 13
If you file under Chapter 13, your debts will be consolidated and reorganized into one manageable monthly payment based on your income level and other factors, such as living expenses. Once you complete your repayment plan (usually within three to five years), any remaining unsecured debt balances will be discharged—meaning they go away forever—and you will be free from debt.
Is Chapter 7 Better than Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?
When it comes to bankruptcy filings, the best option is the option that provides you with the relief you need to get out of overwhelming debt. As such, your best bankruptcy filing option will differ from someone else’s. While many people hope to qualify for Chapter 7 because it doesn’t require a repayment plan, for many people, Chapter 13 is not only adequate for their needs but preferable.
Because bankruptcy filings can have a long-term impact on your credit score, it is crucial that you have a complete understanding of the process and what it entails before moving forward. It’s important that anyone considering filing for bankruptcy first meets with an experienced attorney, like ours at Wadhwani & Shanfeld, who can help explain in more detail how both Chapters 7 & 13 work. Our attorneys can also help you determine which type of bankruptcy filing you are eligible for and which option is most appropriate for your situation.
How Long Does It Take to Resolve a Bankruptcy Case?
Depending on which chapter you file under and how complicated your case is, it could take anywhere from three months up to five years or more until all payments have been made and all remaining unsecured debts have been discharged in full. However, once the process begins, most initial filing processes are resolved within three-to-five months regardless of which chapter was filed under initially (and all that remains is the successful completion of your repayment plan in Chapter 13 cases).
Experienced Bankruptcy Attorneys in Ontario, CA
Our goal is always to ensure that our clients' best interests are protected above all else. We strive to find solutions that are right for your unique situation, and provide you with financial peace of mind. From bankruptcy to foreclosure defense, student loan relief, and debt settlement, our Ontario bankruptcy lawyers will work closely with you to help you determine the most suitable debt resolution.
If you have questions about any debt-related issues, such as the following, we can help:
- Should I file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy?
- Can I keep my car or home if I file for bankruptcy?
- My home is in foreclosure. Can bankruptcy help me?
- Is bankruptcy or debt settlement a better option?
- What can I do if creditors are constantly calling me at all hours?
Struggling with extreme debt is not easy, but our compassionate team believes that everyone deserves a second chance. Your debt does not define you. Let us help you rise above your financial obstacles and enjoy a more secure future.
To learn more, or to request a complimentary case evaluation with our Ontario bankruptcy lawyers, please feel free to call Wadhwani & Shanfeld today.