The Chapter 7 bankruptcy process is a bit more tricky to navigate than a Chapter 13 case. In order to have your best chance at a successful debt discharge, follow a few simple steps:

1. Time it perfectly – The timing of your Louisville bankruptcy case is crucial for the successful outcome. Filing too soon, like after a prior bankruptcy discharge, could leave you ineligible and with a case dismissal. Filing too late, like when your home is almost nearly taken through foreclosure, could leave you with little options for resolving important debts.

2. Understand the eligibility– Not everyone will qualify for a Chapter 7 case. In order to be eligible to file you must pass the means test, meaning your income must be less than the median income level of your state. Having too high of an income or not enough debt to warrant insolvency could mean you are not eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

3. Work with an attorney – There is a reason that bankruptcy lawyers exist, so attempting the process without one is likely to leave you confused and at risk of dismissal. Hire an experienced Louisville bankruptcy lawyer to ensure you understand the process and are making an educated decision for debt relief.

4. Complete the requirements -In order to have your debts discharged you will be required to complete a few requirements like the filing petition, paying the court fee, and attending a debtor’s education course. It is best to complete the debtor’s education course through a reputable credit counseling agency prior to submitting your filing petition. You will also need to pay the $335 court filing fee to initiate your case.

5. Focus on your future – Once you have received a debt discharge now is the best time to focus on your financial future. Monitor your credit report to ensure the information has been updated following your case. Take your time with new credit, and use existing credit to rebuild your credit score. Use the tools learned in the debtor’s education course to develop and stick to a budget. You have a clean slate, make the best of it.