The bankruptcy means test is an objective standard of weighing whether a debtor
actually qualifies for bankruptcy under Chapter 7
Understanding the Means Test
The means test is a process through which you can determine whether you are eligible to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The test compares your income to the median income for a household of your size in the state of New York. If your income is less than that median, you can file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. To better understand the means test and how it may apply to your situation, contact a knowledgeable Buffalo bankruptcy lawyer.
We can help you find relief from debt through a
bankruptcy process, debt settlement plan, or other solution.
The team at Smith & Messina has been working tirelessly on behalf of our clients to protect their rights and give them back their financial freedom. We can put this experience to work for you and help you get the relief you need.
Completing the Means Test and Other Forms
In order to file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will need to fill out a petition and several other forms. If you are hoping to file for Chapter 7, you must complete the means test form (Form 22A). For
Chapter 13, plan to submit a "commitment period and disposable income" form (Form 22C). Each of these two forms provides a complete list of expense categories that qualify for deductions, such as transportation, healthcare, childcare, and food. For some categories, you can deduct the actual amount you spend monthly while for others you can only deduct a predetermined amount based on regional or national standards.
Keep in mind that even if your income is above the state median, you may still be eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, but you will need to submit more detailed information about your debts, expenses, and payments. Even people who file for Chapter 13 typically have to provide this information, so it is best to collect this data no matter which way you plan to go, and we help you through the entire process. All information submitted must be 100% accurate or there could be legal trouble, as the court may believe you were attempting to avoid debt through bankruptcy fraud. You cannot take chances.
Don't Be Intimidated by the Bankruptcy Process
If the bankruptcy process seems confusing or overwhelming, don't let that stop you from getting the debt relief you need. We can help you make a decision and discover if bankruptcy is right for you, and if not, what you can do to get your finances back on track. When you hire us, you will work directly with an attorney, not a legal assistant, so you can be sure you will receive personalized, quality legal counsel that is committed to your goals.
Contact us today so we can speak with you about your situation. We are ready to help.
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