Houston Means Test and Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyers
When your income is insufficient to allow you to pay your debts, Chapter 7 bankruptcy offers a way for you to get back on your feet with a clean slate, releasing you from the majority of your outstanding debt. Filing for bankruptcy protection is intended to be the last resort for those in true financial distress, and while the benefits may seem attractive you must ensure that you qualify for bankruptcy before filing. Your eligibility is determined by what is known as the “means test”.
The means test was introduced by the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act to prevent those who have the financial resources to satisfy their debts from having them discharged. If you are considering bankruptcy as an answer to your financial problems, the experienced and knowledgeable Houston bankruptcy attorneys at the Russell Van Beustring P.C., can help you make the decision that is right for you, and efficiently guide you through the bankruptcy process. Contact us by calling 713-973-6650 for a consultation to learn more about your options.
Chapter 7 Eligibility Requirements
You do not have to be destitute and penniless to qualify for Chapter 7, as it is entirely possible to have a significant monthly income which is still overcome by debt. The means test focuses on determining how much disposable income you actually have, meaning the amount left over in your monthly income after deducting certain allowed expenditures and debt payments. In order to pass the means test, you must meet the following requirements:
- Have a monthly income lower than the state median for your size of household. If you meet this requirement, you automatically pass the means test.
- You do not have sufficient disposable income (determined through various criteria in the test) to pay off a set portion of your unsecured debt each month.
Passing the means test and qualifying for Chapter 7 bankruptcy does not necessarily mean that you should file, only that you can. A knowledgeable lawyer can help you decide which course of action is right for you.
If you are looking to learn more about your options in the face of overwhelming debt, we can help. At the Russell Van Beustring P.C., our experienced Houston means test lawyers are dedicated to helping clients overcome financial distress and recover their independence. Contact us today at 713-973-6650 to learn more about your legal options.