Consumer Bankruptcy in Florida
In Florida, an individual may file for bankruptcy under Chapter 7 which discharges 100% of dischargeable unsecured debt or under Chapter 13 under which the individual has a repayment plan to repay a percentage of the dischargeable unsecured debt. In very limited situations, an individual may file under Chapter 11.
Not all unsecured debt is dischargeable; federal taxes, child support, alimony, federal student loans, criminal fines, judgments for injuries caused by drugs or alcohol, are generally not dischargeable.
Secured debts such as mortgages or liens on automobiles are not dischargeable. However, the debtor may surrender the asset and avoid a deficiency judgment against him or her personally.
There are a variety of exemptions that protect many of the debtor’s assets. Prior to the present recession, the biggest exemption for most debtors was the equity in their homestead. However, since the recession and the decline in property values, many debtors have no equity in their homestead and they choose to surrender the homestead to the mortgage holder. If a debtor chooses to do this, then he acquires a larger exemption for some of his or her other personal property.
For a personal analysis of which of your debts may be dischargeable and which of your assets may be exempt from being taken by the trustee, contact us at William D. Slicker, P.A. for a personal consultation.