Pierce & Shows, APLC

Baton Rouge Personal Injury & Bankruptcy Blog

How the bankruptcy means test determines Chapter 7 eligibility

As one of many people across Louisiana struggling with finances, you may be working through your options and trying to determine whether filing for bankruptcy might help you begin to dig your way out of debt. If you do decide to move forward with a personal bankruptcy and wish to do so with a Chapter 7 filing, you will first need to pass a bankruptcy means test. At Pierce & Shows, APLC, we recognize that the results of your bankruptcy means test will determine whether you can move ahead with a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. We have helped many people facing similar situations figure out whether a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or an alternative option might better suit their needs.

According to NerdWallet, those who take the means test and find out that they are ineligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcies may still be able to move forward with a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. While there are some key distinctions between the two types of filings, the main difference is that a Chapter 7 bankruptcy involves debt forgiveness, while a Chapter 13 involves restructuring your debts so you can pay back at least part of them.

Is bankruptcy your only option?

When facing a rising tide of debt and with little means to stay afloat, most people assume their only recourse is bankruptcy. However, there are other ways to handle financial problems.

The chief way is a “workout” which means that you “work out” your debt with your creditors. You and your creditors can agree on a way to make payments without the stigma and legal hoops of a formal bankruptcy.

When a car crash results in a TBI

Here at Pierce & Shows, APLC, in Louisiana, we represent numerous clients who have suffered catastrophic injuries in a motor vehicle accident. Consequently, we know that one of the worst injuries you can suffer in a car crash is a traumatic brain injury. Unfortunately, approximately 286,000 people suffer such an injury each year according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Mayo Clinic explains that a traumatic brain injury is one in which the crash impact makes your brain squish around in your skull due to the violent back-and-forth motion of your head. The resulting damage to your brain causes it to begin malfunctioning, possibly leaving you with a lifetime of debilitating symptoms that could make your continued employment impossible or even require you to receive constant care.

How secured debt is different than unsecured

If you are like most people in Louisiana, you have some type of credit or debt. This might be in the form of an auto loan, a student loan, a credit card or a home mortgage. You know that when you accept loans or credit, you have the obligation to repay any debt but you also know that there are situations which may arise that make that repayment difficult if not impossible. When this happens, it is important to assess your options and this includes having a good understanding of the two different types of debt.

As explained by The Motley Fool, the two types of debt you might have are called secured and unsecured. A secured debt is anything that is attached to some type of collateral that may be taken by a creditor in the event that you do not successfully repay the debt. Car loans are one type of secured debt. Unsecured debt is not associated with any type of collateral. Many credit cards are unsecured.

How does Chapter 13 work?

If you are one of the many people in Louisiana who is in need of help to manage your debt, you might be wondering if bankruptcy is right for you. When evaluating this option, it is important to know that there are multiple forms of consumer bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be the most commonly known and used but there are times when a Chapter 13 might be the better option. One example is when you have a home or other assets that you do not want to lose.

As explained by the United States Courts, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is essentially a form of organized debt consolidation and repayment. Instead of all of your debts being immediately discharged, you enter into an agreement to make payments to a trustee. The trustee then pays your creditors based on a plan negotiated with each one. A creditor might end up receiving less than the full amount owed but they still receive something instead of nothing.

The holidays are over, but their financial effects might not be

There are many things people here in Louisiana may be feeling now that the holidays have reached their conclusion. Unfortunately, not all of these feelings are happy ones. For example, some may be feeling regret or worry over their holiday spending.

Such feelings are relatively common, as is underscored by the results of a recent WalletHub survey. Of the respondents to this survey, 18 percent reported regretting a purchase made over the recent holiday season. Also, 37 percent said they overspent during this season.

Accident statistics in Louisiana

If you are like many people in Louisiana, you might wonder how safe the roads and highways are. A look at records from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration give some insight into this for a variety of groups, including motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians. 

In East Baton Rouge Parish between 2013 and 2017, a total of 251 people were killed in motor vehicle accidents. Of those, 95 were either on a motorcycle, on a bicycle or on foot. Bikers represented 29 of the deaths, cyclists represented 12 of the deaths and pedestrians represented 54 of the deaths.

Biggest differences between car and semi-truck accidents

Car accidents occur often and a lot of the time the individuals involved walk away either unscathed or with injuries that will heal. Why is it that when individuals are involved in semi-truck accidents, many do not walk away and if they do, it is with a lasting injury? What makes semi-truck accidents different from typical car accidents?

 

A serious spinal cord injury may not be immediately obvious

Serious accidents, like car crashes or slip and falls, can cause life-altering injuries, including injuries to your spinal cord. However, you may not recognize when you have sustained a spinal cord injury if you are not already familiar with the signs, and if a spinal cord injury goes untreated, it could become even more severe.

The spinal cord is a group of nerves that help the brain and the body communicate. A spinal cord injury can be a bruise, partial tear or complete tear within the spinal cord and can range in severity.

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