Some people in Mississippi who are struggling with debt might want to consider filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. This can allow a person to keep some of his or her assets.

In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, an individual works with the court to create a payment plan for paying off his or her debts over a period that lasts three to five years. People who are able to stick to the payment plan and make mortgage payments may be able to keep their homes. They might be able to keep other major assets as well as long as they can keep up with their payments. It may be possible to discharge the bankruptcy earlier if the payment plan is completed in less time than originally planned.

Some debts, including taxes, student loans and child support, must be paid in full and cannot be discharged in bankruptcy. The next level of debt includes any other major assets that can be repossessed if the debt is not paid. Finally, there are unsecured debts, such as medical and credit card debt. Most individuals who file for Chapter 13 might have to pay some of these debts, but the court may allow them to discharge them in part. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy only stays on a person’s record for seven years unlike Chapter 7, which remains on a credit report for 10 years.

A lawyer may explain a person’s options for debt relief and whether he or she qualifies for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. It is necessary for someone to have an income that is high enough to make the necessary payments. Once the bankruptcy filing is made, foreclosure, creditor harassment and any other actions against the debtor must stop. However, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy can offer a person a fresh financial start, and a person can go on to rebuild his or her credit.

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