How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask cfortunato Your Own Question

cfortunato
cfortunato, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 8023
Experience:  Bankruptcy professor.
14232603
Type Your Bankruptcy Law Question Here...
cfortunato is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My total debt, comprising consumer and tax, is above the means

Resolved Question:

My total debt, comprising consumer and tax, is above the means test threshold.

The non-governmental creditors seem to have largely given up on pursuing me. If I file BK, is there a chance that, by failing to prove up their claims, they will succeed in bringing me back into Chapter 13?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  cfortunato replied 1 year ago.

cfortunato :

 


Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a Bankruptcy and Consumer Protection attorney here to assist you.

cfortunato :

The amount of one's debt does not put one above or below the Means Test threshold. It is the amount of one's income that does this.

cfortunato :

Did you mean that the amount of your income is above the Means Test Threshold?

Customer:

I don't know what the income Means Test Threshold is. I was basing what I said on a form I saw with fields for income and outgoings: I thought--maybe mistakenly--that it said something like: "Don't fill out this form if your total unsecured debt is above $X or your secured debt is above $Y."

cfortunato :

That form is for a Chapter 13 only.

cfortunato :

If your debts are over a certain amount, you cannot file a Chapter 13.

cfortunato :

For a Chapter 7, it does not matter how much debt you have.

cfortunato :

But you cannot file a Chapter 7 if your income is over a certain level.

Customer:

What is that level?

cfortunato :

This level is based on the number of persons in your household.

cfortunato :

how many are in your household?

Customer:

Two--my wife and I but we file individual tax returns.

cfortunato :

Is your gross household income (your income and your wife's income) less than $4297 per month?

Customer:

No

cfortunato :

That is the Means Test threshold amount. If your gross household income over that amount, you cannot file a Chapter 7 - you have to file a Chapter 13 - unless you have high medical expenses, or unless some of your income or your wife's income gets contributed to dependents outside your home (eg. child support payments).

cfortunato :

Child support payments get subtracted from your income for the Means Test.

Customer:

I understand.

cfortunato :

To file a Chapter 13, you cannot have more than $360,475 unsecured debt, and you cannot have more than

cfortunato :

$1,149,525 secured debt.

cfortunato :

If you have more than that amount of debt, you would have to file a Chapter 11.

Customer:

Ah--I do have more than $360,475 unsecured debt.

cfortunato :

Then if your income is too high for a Chapter 7, you would have to file a Chapter 11.

Customer:

I have to go to work now but will see your response a bit later. Thank you very much!

cfortunato :

You're welcome!

Customer:

I need to find out about Chapter 11...

cfortunato :

A Chapter 11 is very similar to a Chapter 13 - with both, you have to pay all disposable income (gross income minus living expenses) to the Bankruptcy court for up to 60 months.

Customer:

One more question. It seems the best choice for me is simply to make informal payments to IRS and/or allow them to apply levies until the total amount is satisfied. In that case can they shut down my practice? It is in compliance in regard to employee withholding, etc. and is a sole proprietorship.

Expert:  cfortunato replied 1 year ago.
Our chat has ended, but you can still continue to ask me questions here until you are satisfied with your answer. Come back to this page to view our conversation and any other new information.

What happens now?

If you haven’t already done so, please rate your answer above. Or, you can reply to me using the box below.
Expert:  cfortunato replied 1 year ago.
IRS cannot close your business (or practice) because you owe money to them. (And it would not make sense for them to do so, as you would not be able to pay them if your practice were closed.)
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

That is very reassuring, also in the sense that they are primarily interested in getting their money so I hope will accept informal payments.

Expert:  cfortunato replied 1 year ago.
Yes - you can always make partial payments to the IRS.
cfortunato, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 8023
Experience: Bankruptcy professor.
cfortunato and 3 other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3203
    Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3203
    Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TL/tleeders/2012-6-13_204815_TSL1.64x64.jpg Terry L.'s Avatar

    Terry L.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    2204
    Better Business Bur 15yrs bankruptcy experience. Chicago Bar
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/mnphillips2/2009-03-13_203105_10984459-249293407.jpeg Phillips Esq.'s Avatar

    Phillips Esq.

    Attorney-at-Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    950
    B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CO/cortrightlaw/2011-12-5_4117_Kevin.64x64.JPG cortrightlaw's Avatar

    cortrightlaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    490
    Attorney practicing Bankruptcy Law including Chapter 7, Chapter 11, Chapter 12, and Chapter 13.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/Jay1968/2006-12-03_004423_JoeRossPhoto.jpg JoeLawyer's Avatar

    JoeLawyer

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    376
    Attorney in the practice of Bankruptcy Law since 1996
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DY/Dylatess/2012-9-11_1968_BHBTemplePhoto.64x64.jpg dylatess's Avatar

    dylatess

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    370
    35 plus years of experience specializing in bankruptcy law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/US/USLawAnswers/2012-9-20_23143_20090105211638Headshot3b.64x64.jpg Brent Blanchard's Avatar

    Brent Blanchard

    Bankruptcy Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    315
    Twelve years experience in all aspects of debtor & creditor BK.