Whether it's your personal or business finances that have spiraled out of control, a bankruptcy may be the tool you need to get a new start.

I can help you decide if bankrupcy is right for your situation, and which chapter is best. I also help you through the process of the needed filings with the court, and the required financial disclosures. I will be your advocate through the entire process and will work to protect your financial future.

Types of Bankruptcy

Chapter 7

A bankruptcy under this chapter is the fastest bankruptcy, and can often be finished in six months. The chapter 7 wipes out all of your eligible debt. The catch is that you have to pass a means test, and your expenses have to such that you don't have any money left over at the end of the month.

While called a "liquidation", for most people, all or almost all of their property is exempt and won't be liquidated by the trustee.

Chapter 7 under the Bankruptcy Code is known as a "liquidation" bankruptcy because the trustee in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy can sell non-exempt assets and pay the proceeds to your creditors.

In a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, most debts (with the exception of child support, alimony, certain taxes, and other non dischargeable debts) are eliminated, and the debtor generally loses only non-exempt property.

To be eligible for a chapter 7 bankruptcy, you have to pass a means test. If you aren't eligible for a chapter 7 bankruptcy, you can still file under chapter 13. The majority of people considering bankruptcy have no trouble passing the bankruptcy means test.

While a chapter 7 petitioner does not have to make payments out of his or her future income to have their debts discharged. It is important to understand that some debts cannot be discharged in a chapter 7 Bankruptcy. I will help you determine which debts are dischargable, which assets you can keep, and whether a chapter 7 bankruptcy is the right tool for getting a fresh start.

Chapter 13

In a chapter 13, we propose a spending plan over three or five years where you pay the extra money you have each month which is then paid out to creditors. At the end of the period, any debt left over is eliminated. In other words, you pay for three to five years, and then you're done. You don't have to pay everything off, but your "disposable" income will need to be paid out.

Chapter 11

Wisconsin's Alternative to Bankruptcy.

Finally, Wisconsin has a debt amortization law that allows you to stop any interest and collections and pay the amount owed over three years. This law is flexible in that, unlike bankruptcy, you don't have to include every debt, you can pick and choose. Of course the collections and interest are only stopped for debts you include in the plan, and you don't get any discharge, you just stop the collections and interest. There is a seven or ten percent charge as well, so if you were to amortize 20000 in debt, you'd pay 22000 over three years.

My firm practices bankruptcy law and is considered a debt relief agency by federal law. I help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.