To Our Clients & Prospective Clients -- As of March 18, 2020, Starr & Starr, PLLC remains open for business during the current Corona virus (COVID-19) crisis. We remain in communications with our clients by phone, email and our secure file share site. We are scheduling telephone consultations by phone and video chat. At this time the U.S. Bankruptcy Courts, the U.S. District Courts and New York State Court system are all open. We are continuing to file new cases and process our existing cases.

We hope everyone stays safe throughout these difficult times.

Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Filing in New York?

A common question I get asked by people from the Bronx, Queens, Staten Island, Brooklyn and Manhattan considering filing for personal bankruptcy is whether they should file chapter 7 or chapter 13.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is typically used to preserve a valuable asset, such as a house, car, or rental apartment when the debtor is past due on payment and facing a foreclosure, repo, or eviction lawsuit. In chapter 13 bankruptcy the debtor keeps making current payments as they become due and cures the past due portion over time through the chapter 13 plan.

For a debtor with no valuable asset to protect, unless his/her income is above the level where he/she fails the means test , or he/she would like to repay his/her creditors over time, it may make more sense to to file chapter 7 bankruptcy. The means test is based on average income and family size. In a prior blog post we discussed eligilibilty requirements for chapter 13 and issues and in a separate blog post discussed commonly encountered problems in NY chapter 13 cases.

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