Tampa Bankruptcy Attorneys

Helping Our Florida Clients Find Relief Through Bankruptcy

Drowning in debt can often feel insurmountable.

It is not hard to fall behind on your bills if you have:

  • Lost work
  • Suffered an injury
  • Gone through a divorce
  • Experienced any of the numerous events that can result in unexpected financial costs

The tricky thing about debt is that the problem gets worse the longer it goes on. As you are forced to choose between caring for the immediate needs of your family and paying off interest that only continues to inflate, you might wonder if this debt will control you forever. It does not have to!

“Excellent and very professional law firm with great team.”

- Jess S.

You may have resisted the idea of bankruptcy because some claim it constitutes “giving up” or a failure of financial responsibility. The reality is it can be one of the most responsible things you can do in a scenario where you are burdened with debt. Retaking control of your financial situation is the opposite of giving up: It is moving forward!

Bankruptcy is a vital tool in helping debtors liquidate or reorganize their estates and discharge certain types of debts, giving them the opportunity to work toward a debt-free future. Bankruptcy can be a complex, sometimes overwhelming process, and while you can file for it without legal assistance, doing so is not advised.

Your bankruptcy process will likely involve filing convoluted paperwork, negotiating with a judge and your creditors, tabulating complex formulas to establish your disposable income, and more. Making avoidable mistakes can result in the rejection of your filing or delays in getting the relief you need.

This is why you need the legal services of Cremeens Law Group PLLC. Our Tampa bankruptcy lawyers have a thorough knowledge of Florida’s Bankruptcy Code and are prepared to assist you in both forms of consumer bankruptcy.

We can work to best leverage the benefits of Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy and work to minimize either process’s impact on your assets. With our help, you can reduce or even eliminate your debt, putting you on track to regain control of your life.

You can be free of overwhelming debt, but the sooner you act, the better. Call (813) 683-8688 or contact us online to get started on your bankruptcy today.

Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

We can assist you with the two types of consumer bankruptcy, Chapter 7 bankruptcy and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Generally, you will not qualify for both, with your level of income and other financial factors determining your eligibility.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is known for its liquidation process, in which your nonexempt assets are sold – or liquidated – by a trustee assigned to your case. The proceeds of those sales repay creditors, and, in exchange, you are permitted to discharge unsecured debts.

Liquidation justifiably seems frightening, but the state of Florida offers some of the most generous exemptions in the country. With the right strategy and planning, you can significantly limit the effects of liquidation on your property.

An experienced lawyer can assist in preparing your estate for this process. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is ideal for those who have little to no present income and a limited number of assets.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is often called “reorganization bankruptcy,” as it omits the liquidation process and instead reorganizes your debt through a single, court-approved repayment plan. Using your ability to pay as a guide, you will make a single lump payment for 3 to 5 years that covers all of your qualifying debt.

Like in Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you will be able to discharge unsecured debts at the conclusion of the process. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is suited for those who still have steady income but are nonetheless burdened with debt.

In addition to the benefits of discharging certain kinds of debt, both types of consumer bankruptcy grant you what is called an “automatic stay” as soon as you file.

This court order prohibits any further collection actions against your estate, meaning it will:

  • Freeze foreclosures
  • Repossessions
  • Lawsuits seeking debt repayment

Creditors and collections agents will no longer be able to harass you for the duration of your bankruptcy. The automatic stay can thus keep you from imminently losing your home or vehicle and help avoid court actions involving your debt.

How Do You Qualify for Consumer Bankruptcy?

As we mentioned above, you likely qualify for either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, but not both. To determine your eligibility, you will need to evaluate your household’s current level of income, weighed against your qualifying expenses, through the state of Florida’s Means Test.

One easy way to determine whether you qualify for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is by checking your household’s income against the state of Florida’s current median incomes. If your income is equal to or lower than the median for your household size, you most likely qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If your income is greater than the median, the answer is less clear, and you will have to complete the full Florida Means Test.

The Means Test involves numerous formulas, but the thrust involves taking your current income and subtracting qualifying expenses that contribute to your cost of living – think rent, food, clothing, and the like. The resulting remainder is your “disposable income,” the amount of which will establish if you have enough to repay some of your debts through Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Knowing what to deduct and what to exclude can often become confusing, and the Means Test is unfortunately not nearly as simple as subtracting expenses from income. An improper calculation of your disposable income can lead to a mistaken belief on which type of bankruptcy you qualify for, leading to valuable wasted time spent pursuing a filing that will not be accepted by the courts. Our Tampa bankruptcy attorneys are experienced in helping clients navigate the Means Test and determining their eligibility.

How The Cremeens Law Group Can Help

We at the Cremeens Law Group PLLC realize that going through bankruptcy is no one’s first choice, but the process can nonetheless be a lifesaver to those who find themselves overwhelmed by debt. Our Tampa bankruptcy lawyers can work to make bankruptcy as beneficial to you as possible and represent you every step of the way.Whether you need assistance determining your eligibility, filing your documents, preparing for liquidation or reorganization, or negotiating with the court, our legal team is equipped to help.

You do not need to be panicked about mounting debt, but move quickly to get your life under control through bankruptcy. Call (813) 683-8688 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.

Taking the Burden Off of Your Shoulders

What You Can Expect With Us
  • Experience

    Having worked with both consumers and lenders, we have unique insight for how banks work, providing you with the best strategy.

  • Results

    If you hire us, we will be the attorneys that keep you in your home.

  • Affordability

    With payment plans available and without any hidden or extra fees, our goal is to help you budget when you're dealing with financial issues.

  • Communication

    You will never be kept in the dark. From start to finish, we maintain regular communication about your case.

Ready to Discuss Your Case?

Schedule a free consultation with us today to explore your options.