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Terry L.
Terry L., Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 2830
Experience:  Better Business Bureau. 18yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar Assoc. American Bankruptcy Institute member.
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1. Do I need to not have paid my bills for few months and have

Customer Question

1. Do I need to not have paid my bills for few months and have no funds left in bank in order to file for Chapter 7 or can I do it earlier? 2. I am a physician working in a private practice and currently withdrawing $10,000 salary monthly from practice. Can I still file for Chapter 7? 3. My wife wants to get into the medical billing business. Will her business be affected by the Chapter 7 filing or should she wait to start it after the Chapter 7 filing?
Submitted: 6 years ago via Nolo Press.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  Terry L. replied 6 years ago.

Terry L. :

Hi and thank you for your question. In the future, you can request me to answer any further questions.

Terry L. :

Generally, unless you have had recent usage on your debts, I advise my clients not to pay on the debts they want to discharge in the case, and obviously do not incur debt before filing.

Terry L. :

When you file, you must list all assets, including money in the bank and cash etc.

Terry L. :

In TN there is a $4000 wildcard to use to exempt cash, bank accounts and personal belongings.

Terry L. :

To determine if your income qualifies you for chapter 7, you need to complete the means test.

Terry L. :

This calculates income and expenses for all the household income over the 6 months leading up to the case.

Terry L. :

Absent special circumstances, and without knowing your allowable deductions for actual expenses (tax, Child support, insurance etc) I would think you would not pass the means test, and would need to look to chapter 13. But, there are exceptions so I recommend you meet with a local bankruptcy attorney to review your means test and your asset protection exemptions available to you.

Terry L. :

Her business should not be affected if it has not even started yet.

Terry L. :

Thank you for your question, good luck.

Customer:

I would like some more clarification please:

Terry L. :

sure, on what?

Customer:

1. Does my bank account need to be at zero to file for Chapter 7? 2. If my wife's business opens in December 2010 and I file for bankruptcy Jan 1 2011 will it be affected? Thanks!

Terry L. :

you have $4000 wildcard, to use on any assets like bank accounts, furniture etc, so it does not have to be at $0

Terry L. :

If the business is solely in her name, debts in her name, and you do not fund the business, then no, it should not affect her.

Customer:

OK. Thanks.

Terry L. :

You are welcome.

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