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Ohio Bankruptcy Lawyers

Bankruptcy can free you from endless collection calls, wage garnishment, and the unending stress of being in debt. The bankruptcy lawyers at Luftman, Heck & Associates understand how easy it is to lose your financial footing. We review and analyze your situation with knowledge and compassion. We help you determine if bankruptcy is appropriate for you or if another form of debt control will work.

Call us today at (614) 224-1500 or use our online contact form to reach out for a free initial consultation with experienced bankruptcy attorneys in Ohio.

What Is Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy is a legal process in which you ask the court to relieve you of some or all your debts. You can file for personal bankruptcy or business bankruptcy.

Common Types of Bankruptcy

There are many types of bankruptcy; however, there are two that are most common.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is known as liquidation bankruptcy. This type of bankruptcy eliminates all your debt, with a few exceptions. You do not owe your creditors and have a clean slate.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 bankruptcy, on the other hand, is known as a reorganization plan. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy forgives some debts and establishes a repayment plan for others.

Other types of bankruptcy can benefit individuals and businesses in specific situations.

Where to File Bankruptcy in Columbus, OH

Individuals who have lived in Franklin County, Ohio, or within the surrounding counties, for at least 180 days may file for bankruptcy in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Ohio.

The address of the Columbus Divisional Office is 170 North High St., Columbus, Ohio 43215. The phone number is 614-469-6638.

How an Ohio Bankruptcy Attorney Can Help You

Bankruptcy occurs in a special federal court with a judge and other court personnel familiar with bankruptcy laws. Those laws are complex. While you are not required to hire a bankruptcy lawyer, you could be at a disadvantage.

Our bankruptcy lawyers have a deep understanding of the law and a track record of success helping people in similar situations to your own.

You may expect a bankruptcy lawyer with Luftman, Heck & Associates to do the following.

Make You Feel Comfortable

Bankruptcy is stressful. Your name and financial information may be published in the newspaper and will be made public. An attorney can help you remain calm and focused on what you need to do. Your lawyer advises you on handling probing questions from friends and family members about your private financial matters.

Efficiently Handle Your Bankruptcy

A bankruptcy attorney ensures that your paperwork and information are complete and accurate. Mistakes on your bankruptcy paperwork slow the process by months or even years. A knowledgeable lawyer helps you meet all deadlines to avoid delays or additional fees.

Personalize Your Case Evaluation

There are bankruptcy services that provide you with standard forms and steps to file the case yourself. However, these DIY services do not review your financial information or give you personalized legal advice.

Bankruptcy is a decision with long-term consequences. You should make sure it is right for you by working with a bankruptcy lawyer who knows about your situation.

Inform You of All Your Options

Luftman, Heck & Associates offer bankruptcy representation and more for our clients in Columbus, Ohio. Our lawyers also provide general advice regarding debt and consumer issues. We might be able to stop or prevent debt collectors from harassing you.

We make sure you know all your options in addition to bankruptcy. For example, debt consolidation or negotiation may be a better option in your case. We will make sure you have all the information you need to make the right choice.

How Much Does Bankruptcy Cost?

There are several costs of filing for bankruptcy that should be considered, including:

  • Mandatory pre-filing credit counseling
  • Court filing fees (potentially avoidable)
  • Mandatory debt management education
  • Preparing, copying, assembling, and mailing forms
  • Gathering information for your case
  • Attorney costs and other fees

In the long run, an experienced Ohio bankruptcy attorney helps save you money. They work to preserve your property, reduce your payments, and ensure you don’t spend more than you must on other aspects of your case.

Costs of Not Using an Attorney

You are not required to use a private bankruptcy attorney in Ohio. However, there are some costs that you may potentially face.

Stress is Added to Your Situation

Your bankruptcy lawyer reduces stress, aggravation, and time in achieving a resolution in your bankruptcy. Many bankruptcy clients find that this peace of mind is invaluable when facing financial distress.

Risk of Not Including All Debt

Your attorney also ensures that your bankruptcy includes all your debt. If you fail to include a creditor, you may end up having to pay them after your bankruptcy. If you don’t file everything appropriately, your case could be dismissed without having your debts eliminated, or you may be accused of fraud.

An affordable bankruptcy lawyer from Luftman, Heck & Associates works with your needs and your schedule. We strive to keep our fees low and create affordable options for all clients.

Types of Bankruptcy We Handle

You may be eligible for one or more types of bankruptcy. The only way to determine which is right for you is to carefully evaluate your resources, assets, and debts and the timeline you need to resolve things. Luftman, Heck & Associates will assess your goals and help you develop a plan to achieve them quickly.

We can help you with the following types of bankruptcies in Ohio:

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Also known as liquidation bankruptcy, individuals and businesses may file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It allows you to discharge all debt without losing exempt assets. People often seek Chapter 7 to eliminate medical bills, credit card debt, personal loans, and other debt.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is available to individual consumers with a steady, regular income. It allows them to establish a repayment plan for debts to keep most or all their assets.

Should I File Bankruptcy?

It’s challenging to know when filing for bankruptcy is the right thing to do. Filing an unnecessary bankruptcy is a waste of time and money.
However, bankruptcy is a viable option if you have exhausted all other options and cannot get out of debt. Declaring bankruptcy also protects you from creditors who may sue for their money.

When Bankruptcy is the Right Choice

Filing for bankruptcy might be the right choice for you if:

  • Monthly expenses are always more than your monthly income
  • You rely on credit for necessary expenses
  • You cannot make minimum payments on loans and credit cards for multiple months in a row
  • You miss one or more debt payments
  • Creditors are garnishing your wages
  • Your creditors have threatened to sue you or take you to court
  • A debt collection attorney has contacted you

Our Ohio bankruptcy lawyers are here to help you when you have more debt than you can handle. We will thoroughly review your financial situation and advise you on whether you are eligible for bankruptcy.

If you qualify and choose to take advantage of this opportunity, we guide you through the bankruptcy process.

How to Prepare to File for Bankruptcy

Before you file for bankruptcy, you will need to provide your attorney with a significant amount of personal information. Some of it may seem invasive, but it is necessary to give your lawyer everything possible so they can complete the required paperwork.

Information to Gather for Your Attorney

You should:

  • Gather financial paperwork, including tax documents, W2s, 1099s, etc.
  • Complete mandatory pre-filing credit counseling
  • Attend the Meeting of Creditors (341-meeting), which your attorney attends with you
  • Complete mandatory pre-discharge financial management education

How Your Attorney Uses This Information

Your attorney will use this information to:

  • Determine your bankruptcy options, including which chapters you are eligible for
  • Determine if your property is exempt from bankruptcy
  • Prepare and assemble your bankruptcy papers, which often includes more than 50 pages of forms and documents
  • Make copies of necessary forms according to local court rules
  • File forms with the court
  • Pay the required filing fee
  • File motions to eliminate liens
  • Respond to Objections from creditors, if any

Our attorneys stay in contact with you throughout the process. Things will likely move quickly in the beginning. However, there may be a lull immediately after your filing your bankruptcy documents. Your attorney prepares you for court proceedings and hearings.

Pros & Cons of Filing for Bankruptcy for Consumers

Many individuals and families struggle to make ends meet. At Luftman, Heck & Associates, we often meet people who believe they failed by acquiring so much debt, even when it was out of their hands. We understand how stressful and demoralizing financial struggles can be.

We are here to help you pay off your debts and obtain a clean slate.

Pros of Filing for Bankruptcy

Through bankruptcy, you may benefit from:

  • Avoiding repossession of property, including vehicles
  • Avoiding home foreclosure
  • Having utilities turned back on
  • Stopping collection actions and lawsuits
  • Stopping creditor harassment
  • Ending wage garnishment

Bankruptcy has many potential benefits. However, it is not an easy process. Our bankruptcy lawyers at Luftman, Heck & Associates answer your questions and prepare you for the challenges of bankruptcy.

Potential Cons of Filing for Bankruptcy

Some of the negative aspects of filing for bankruptcy include:

  • Living on a tight budget
  • Making minimum monthly payments
  • Losing certain types of assets
  • Giving up certain luxuries, such as vacations
  • Having a bankruptcy on your credit report

Contact our Ohio Bankruptcy Lawyers Today

At Luftman, Heck & Associates, we realize how difficult and stressful it can be to consider bankruptcy in Ohio. We have worked with many overwhelmed and hardworking individuals and couples who want to get back on stable financial ground. We want to help you get there.

Our bankruptcy law firm focuses on Ohio consumer law and consumer bankruptcies. We represent individuals and married couples seeking relief through bankruptcy.

To learn more about your options, applying for bankruptcy, and the overall process, contact us online or call (614) 224-1500 for a free, no-risk initial consultation.

Contact us today!