Can Filing Bankruptcy Affect Your Inheritance?

March 20, 2014

Filing Bankruptcy in Jacksonville & Reporting Your Inheritance

bankruptcy and inheritance in jacksonville

What is in your future?

When you are considering filing bankruptcy in Jacksonville, it is important to understand the possibility that any inheritance you receive within 180 days of the date you file for bankruptcy must be reported. If there is any chance you might be receiving an inheritance and your struggles to make ends meet has you considering filing for bankruptcy, you should definitely speak with a bankruptcy attorney as soon as possible. Timing is everything, and having an experienced bankruptcy lawyer to help you navigate the next few weeks will be extremely helpful.

When Does Bankruptcy Affect Your Inheritance

Whether what you inherit becomes part of your bankruptcy estate or not depends on if you received it within 180 days of filing for bankruptcy in Jacksonville FL. If you received it within that window, then you must file an amendment to your bankruptcy filing, even if your case is already closed. It doesn’t mean you automatically lose all of your inheritance, that will depend on how much of it will be considered exempt. But even if all of it is not exempt, it may simply mean that some of it will be dispersed to your creditors and the remainder will come to you after a set amount of time.

Closing the 180 Day Window

Here is an example. Let’s say Jane filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy on January 1, 2014. Her case went through the system and it was closed on May 1, 2014. Ten days later, on May 10th her Aunt died and left Jane $100,000 in her will. Because she is still within the window of 180 days from when she filed (January 1st) she will need to wait until the end of the year for the bankruptcy estate to allocate the monies to her outstanding creditors. Whatever amount is left Jane will receive next January after all of the creditors have been paid. If Jane had filed just 60 days earlier, she would not have been required to report that inheritance.

Jacksonville Inheritance and Bankruptcy Questions Answered

Don’t feel bad if having this information simply makes you feel like you have more questions. Everyone’s financial situation is different. That is why it is helpful to have a legal bankruptcy advisor like Robert Peters around when you are researching whether or not to consider filing bankruptcy in Jacksonville FL. If you are struggling with finances, whether you have a rich Aunt or not, come talk to us. Download our free book on bankruptcy or give us a call. We can help you to see if there are ways to get help, or if you need to file for bankruptcy to get a fresh start. Knowing how and when can be a huge help. Get the answers you need today.


 

photo credit: quinn.anya cc

How To Stop Wage Garnishment – Jacksonville Wage Garnishment Laws

March 11, 2014

How To Stop Wage Garnishment in Jacksonville

Wage Garnishment Options By Attorney Robert Peters

wage-garnishmentjacksonvilleOne of the real nightmares anyone can face if you live in Jacksonville is wage garnishment. It is an embarrassment at work and for many it is the last straw in a long list of financial problems. But the truth of the matter is; if you are in debt to the point that your credit card company or the local hospital has gone after you and garnished your wages, there may be a solution. While you can always negotiate with your creditors, if you are faced with wage garnishment in Jacksonville, you have probably already been down that road. At this point, the best way to stop them from continuing with wage garnishment is to file for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is a legal right, and it may be the best solution for you and your family.

Exceptions to Wage Garnishment in Jacksonville Florida

Florida law follows the federal law about when someone can garnish your wages. There aren’t any additional restrictions above and beyond the federal laws as some states have. What this means for you is that they cannot garnish your wages without first getting a court settlement made in their favor. So if you owe your credit card company more than you have any hope of paying back, they will need to take you to court first. This is true of any debt, with a few exceptions. The exceptions are:

  • If you owe on income taxes
  • If you are behind in court ordered child support payments
  • If you have defaulted on your student loans

These are all cases where you will be seeing your wages garnished without having first gone to court. But even then, there are limits to how much of your wages they can take.

Wage Garnishment Has Limits

Luckily, there are limitations on how much they can take when they garnish your wages if you live in Jacksonville Florida. The limitation is that they cannot take more than 25% of your total disposable earnings or the amount by which your disposable earnings are more than 30 times the federal minimum wage. They will take whichever is less. In Florida if you earn less than 30 times the federal minimum wage they cannot garnish your wages at all. But as you can see, once this process starts it will be hard for you to keep your head above water, let alone pay off that bill you owe.

Avoid Wage Garnishment By Filing Bankruptcy in Jacksonville

Of course, when you file for bankruptcy all of this becomes moot. That is because the moment you have filed for bankruptcy, all bets are off with your creditors. The courts will decide which of the debts you have outstanding will be written off with your bankruptcy. However it ends, you will get a clean slate and a chance to start all over. That is the point of going through a bankruptcy and why the courts allow it. Making the decision to file for bankruptcy may not be an easy one, but if you are facing wage garnishment in Florida it just might be the smart decision. If this sounds like you, come by our website and download our free E-book Myths, Secrets and the Truth about Bankruptcy in Jacksonville. Learn what you can do to get your life back. You don’t have to endure the pain of having your wages garnished because of unpaid debt and we can show you why.