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What can I do to Improve My Credit After Bankruptcy?

While many consumers worry about the aftermath of filing for personal bankruptcy, it is critical for you to know that you can start improving your credit almost immediately after you receive a bankruptcy discharge. For many debtors in Illinois and across the country, Chapter 7 bankruptcy can allow for a fresh financial start, while Chapter 13 bankruptcy can allow for debt reorganization and can, in many cases, allow homeowners to avoid bankruptcy. Yet many debtors hold off on filing for bankruptcy because they assume it will be difficult to rebuild credit after a consumer bankruptcy.

We want to emphasize that you can rebuild your credit after filing for bankruptcy, and the following are some key steps to get you started. If you have additional questions or need assistance with your bankruptcy filing, you should seek advice from an experienced Oak Park consumer bankruptcy attorney.

Apply for a Retail Credit Card or a Secured Credit Card

In order to rebuild your credit after a consumer ban…

Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Better for Me Than Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

If you are having difficulty managing your debt and are considering consumer bankruptcy, you may be wondering whether Chapter 7 bankruptcy is better for you than Chapter 13, or vice versa. Many debtors think that it can be possible to choose between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy, but this is not often the case. A debtor who is eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy likely will not be eligible for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, and vice versa. Ultimately, Chapter 7 bankruptcy could better meet your needs than Chapter 13 bankruptcy, but that alone does not mean that you will be eligible to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. We will explain more below, but if you have questions, you should get in touch with an experienced Oak Park bankruptcy attorney to discuss your options.

Chapter 7 Being Preferable Does Not Mean That You are Eligible

You might be thinking that you would prefer to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy because you can receive a discharge of your debts relatively quickly, and you can get a f…

Why You Should Not Fear Consumer Bankruptcy

During this time of economic downturn and massive unemployment, many Oak Park, IL residents and Americans across the country are wondering if consumer bankruptcy is the right choice for them. Yet, as a recent article in NerdWallet underscores, debtors everywhere often fear bankruptcy, and it can prevent those debtors from seeking the relief they need to move forward. As that article underscores, there are so many myths about bankruptcy that drive debtors’ fears and worries about filing for bankruptcy, when Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy could benefit individuals and families who are struggling with debt. The following are just some of the reasons that you should not fear bankruptcy and should get in touch with an Oak Park bankruptcy attorney to learn more about your options for filing.

You Should Know That You Will Not Lose All of Your Property

If you are considering Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which is a form of liquidation bankruptcy, you should know that all of your assets will not be …

Federal Crackdown on Abusive Debt Collection

Consumers in Oak Park, Illinois and across the country are struggling during the coronavirus pandemic. Many have lost their jobs, and some are considering the possibility of consumer bankruptcy. When you are already struggling with substantial debt, enduring abusive debt collection practices can be devastating. Debt collectors are required to abide by the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), but many debt collectors violate federal law. According to a recent news release from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the FTC in conjunction with “more than 50 federal and state law enforcement partners,” initiated a “law enforcement and outreach initiative to protect consumers from phantom debt collection and abusive and threatening debt collection practices.”

Taking Enforcement Actions Through Operation Corrupt Collector

The newest initiative from the FTC and its partners is called Operation Corrupt Collector, and it “includes five FTC law enforcement actions,” which include thr…

Why Was My Bankruptcy Discharge Denied?

If you filed for personal bankruptcy on your own—i.e., without help from an experienced bankruptcy lawyer—you could find yourself in a situation in which your bankruptcy discharge is denied. Given that consumer bankruptcy may be your only option for managing your debt and finding a way to get back on track financially, learning that your debts will not be discharged can be devastating. In some cases, the court might not discharge debt due to an error you made at some point during your bankruptcy case—from providing incorrect information unintentionally to failing to take one of the required steps in a bankruptcy case. In other situations, it could be that your debts are not dischargeable under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. In other scenarios, the bankruptcy court might believe you engaged in bankruptcy fraud, in which case you could be facing additional penalties or legal problems beyond simply not getting your debt discharged.

No matter what the cause, you should seek advice as soon as po…

SBA Loans and Bankruptcy: What You Need to Know as a Consumer and Business Owner

If you are a consumer who applied for an SBA disaster loan in order to support your business during the coronavirus pandemic, there are a couple of ways in which Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program ultimately could impact consumers when it comes to personal bankruptcy. We want to tell you more about these loans and how they could come to have an impact on small business owners who are considering consumer bankruptcy.

To explain the potential links between these SBA loans and consumer bankruptcy, we will tell you more about the loans themselves first. Then we will discuss some of the ways in which these loans could impact a consumer bankruptcy case.

What Small Business Owners Should Know About SBA Loans

According to a recent CNBC article, a large number of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster loans, which include PPP and EIDL loans, were paid out to small businesses. Many of these businesses are sole proprietorships…

Sole Proprietorships and Bankruptcy: What are the Options?

If you own a small business and you are having significant debt problems, you might be considering how bankruptcy laws could help you to get back on track with your business finances. In particular, given the ways in which the COVID-19 emergency has impacted small businesses in Chicagoland and across the country, many small business owners are struggling to keep their doors open, and some are considering the possibility of bankruptcy. For businesses that are structured as sole proprietorships, it is important to work with an Oak Park bankruptcy lawyer who has experience handling consumer bankruptcy cases because these bankruptcies ultimately will be personal bankruptcies.

Businesses that are sole proprietorships are in effect the same entity as the business owner. Accordingly, any debts of the business are also the personal debts of the business owner, and vice versa. This means that a sole proprietorship cannot, on its own, file for bankruptcy without affecting the personal finances o…