Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Information
Atlanta Bankruptcy Court75 Ted Turner Drive SW
Atlanta, GA 30303-3361
Contact Number: (404) 331-6833
Gainesville Bankruptcy Court
121 Spring Street, S.E., Room 201
Gainesville, GA 30501
Contact Number: (770) 532-1361
Chapter 13 Trustees
Atlanta, GA 30303
(678) 510-1444 Adam’s Website
Atlanta, GA 30303
(404) 525-1110Mary’s Website
Frequently Asked Questions
MOST CHAPTER 13 CASES SPAN OVER A 60 MONTH PERIOD AND
WITHIN THAT TIME FRAME ISSUES MAY COME UP IN YOUR CASE THAT REQUIRE ADDITIONAL ACTION.
Once you file for bankruptcy protection from your creditors any excess income over that listed in your initial budget filed with the court MUST be paid to the Chapter 13 Trustee so that he or she may pay your unsecured creditors off. The trustee is not keeping your money for themselves but simply paying off your debt.
Although a motion to retain a tax refund can be filed by our office if you have an emergency need for the funds THAT CAN BE DOCUMENTED. This must be an unexpected emergency and not for everyday expenses and needs.
If your car is totaled in an auto accident and you are covered by auto insurance, the insurance company will pay off any outstanding claims for the totaled car in your bankruptcy. If for some reason you receive a check from the insurance company you MUST submit these funds directly to your Chapter 13 Trustee so that the money can be applied to the outstanding debt. Failure to do so can have serious consequences.
Any pending legal actions MUST be disclosed on your bankruptcy petition. Failure to do some may result in you being forced to forfeit your recovery to the Chapter 13 Trustee. Please notify your attorney immediately if you retain an attorney for ANY matter.
The Bankruptcy Court must approve any attorney you retain for any legal matter. Failure to do so will result in your attorney not being paid for the work they performed. In addition, once a settlement is reached, this settlement must also be approved by the Bankruptcy Court as well.
By law you are required to pay all additional money received into your Chapter 13 case. The funds will be applied to your case (i.e. paying off the debts you owe) and if there are any excess funds available the trustee will cut you a check for that portion. Please contact our office immediately if this situation arises.
If you wish purchase a new car and must take out a loan to do so you will need Court approval to incur this new debt. You will need to provide us with the proposed financing agreement with all purchase terms. We will then file a Motion to Incur the new debt and obtain the Court’s approval.
Clients who wish to refinance their mortgage must file a Motion to Incur Debt since this is a new loan.
Please provide our office the proposed terms and HUD statement. The closing date must be set at least 45 days out.
Clients who wish to sell their home must fax over a contract to sell with a closing date set at least 45 days out from the date of the contract. In addition you must also provide us with the following information:
- How much earnest money has been put down, who has the money and the sources of the funds.
- HUD-1 Statement
- Copy of the sale contract
- Who the proceeds of the sale shall be paid to (this should be the Chapter 13 Trustee)
- Principal balance on the mortgage.
DO NOT HAVE YOUR REAL ESTATE AGENT CALL US. THIS CAN BECOME CONFUSING AND WILL CAUSE A DELAY IN PROCESSING YOUR PAPERWORK. YOU NEED TO GET THE INFORMATION FROM THE AGENT AND PROVIDE IT TO US. WE DO NOT DEAL WITH REAL ESTATE AGENTS.
Once we have received all the necessary paperwork we will daft and file a Motion to Sell and request a hearing to obtain Court approval for the sale of your home.
If you motion to sell is approved then the proceeds will be paid into your case and any excess funds after your case is paid off will be paid directly to you.
I have had an unexpected and unplanned situation arise (illness, job loss, divorce) and will be unable to make my Chapter 13 payments for a couple of months…
If you have been in your Chapter 13 case FOR AT LEAST a year and a situation arises in which you know you are unable to make your trustee payments please click on the applicable link below.
We can then file the appropriate motion with the court to request a payment suspension. DO NOT WAIT UNTIL YOU ARE ALREADY DELINQUENT TO CONTACT US. Contact us IMMEDIATELY when you realize that you are unable to make your payments. Please note that there is NO guarantee that this motion will be granted since each case must be judged on its own merits.
All of your creditors have a deadline in which to file a proof of claim and get paid in your case. If a creditor files AFTER the deadline then we can object to their claim being paid since they missed the deadline. However, we must have your permission so when you receive the letter notifying you of the late filed claim please call our office and let us know if you want us to object to the claim. These objections are VERY time sensitive so you MUST call us ASAP when you receive notice of a late filed claim.
PLEASE NOTE: If the late filed claim is for SECURED by goods we can still object to paying the claim in your case but when you case is over the creditor can repossess their property. So if you want to keep your property you will allow the late claim to be filed with no objection.
CHAPTER 13 CASES:
If you receive notice a Motion for Relief has been filed by your Mortgage Company. Please READ the Motion and see what months the mortgage company is claiming they have not received payments for. You must have records of all payments made to the mortgage company since the dating of filing.
Please contact Vicki Fox (Vfox@blglawgroup.com) via email or call the office at: 404-220-9906 to resolve this motion without your appearance in court.
If you have fallen behind on your mortgage payments you MUST come up with the arrears in order to retain your home. Contact our office BEFORE the hearing date so that we can try to work out an arrangement with the mortgage company.
Please understand the urgency of this matter; if you don’t come up with the money to catch up on your mortgage payments the Court will grant the Motion for Relief. This enables your lender to continue where they left off before the bankruptcy with such actions as Foreclosure, Garnishment, Bank Levy and Repossession.
PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU WILL INCUR ADDITIONAL ATTORNEY FEES FOR ALL MOTIONS FILED AFTER YOUR CASE IS CONFIRMED.
CHAPTER 7 CASES:
If you are in a Chapter 7 case and you get notice a Motion For Relief has been filed you do NOT need to attend your hearing because you are not reorganizing your mortgage arrears through your case. If your intentions are to keep your home when filing a Chapter 7 then you MUST continue making your mortgage payments. If you surrendering the property via your Chapter 7 filing this motion is just notice to you letting you know your lender is ready to start the foreclosure process..
A Motion to Dismiss is filed by the Trustee for usually one of three reasons:
- You have fallen behind on your trustee payments.If you have fallen behind on your trustee payments you will have to bring your payments current by the hearing date or the court will dismiss your case for failure to comply with your Chapter 13 Plan.
- The claims filed by your creditors have come in higher than anticipated therefore creating a terms issue. Meaning with the increased claims your Chapter 13 Plan is running over the Court allowed 60 months. (The maximum amount of time you are allowed to remain in a Chapter 13 is 60 months)If your claims have come in higher than anticipated please call our office immediately so that we may review these claims with you to determine if the claims are valid. If you believe that a claim is not correct YOU MUST PROVIDE OUR OFFICE WITH WRITTEN PROOF of the correct amount before we can object to the amount.
- You have failed to provide the Trustee with a copy of your tax returns and/or failed to submit your tax refund to the Trustee as required by your confirmed chapter 13 plan.If you have failed to provide our office with a copy of your tax return please do so immediately so that we can provide the Trustee with a copy. If you have failed to submit your tax refund to the Trustee please calls our office so we can discuss and determine what amount if any you are allowed to retain.
The court requires that your monthly trustee payment be deducted directly from your paycheck. In the event that you change jobs you must notify our office so that another Employer Deduction Order (EDO) can be filed with the Court. While the Court understands that some jobs have a 90 day probationary period after the 90 day period the court will require a new EDO. Failure to comply with this order can result in the dismissal of your case.