Debt Protection Attorney Oklahoma City, OK
One of the worst parts about being in debt is dealing with the harassment of creditors and the stress that accompanies constant phone calls and letters demanding payment and/or threatening legal action. Creditors and debt collectors have their practices regulated by federal law, but there are many who simply ignore those rules. Moreover, the laws that regulate collections practices still allow for what amounts to regular harassment.
If you’re in serious debt and are tired of the non-stop calls, you may be interested to learn about one of the lesser-known benefits for filing for personal bankruptcy. It is known as the “automatic stay,” and it is automatically applied to anyone filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Between the protections afforded by the automatic stay and the assistance of a debt attorney Oklahoma City, OK residents trust, the bankruptcy process can help you to get creditors off your back once and for all. The experienced team at The Law Offices of Marty D. Martin is here to help you understand and successfully navigate every aspect of the bankruptcy process, including the automatic stay.
The Automatic Stay: How Does it Work?
As soon as a bankruptcy petition is filed, the court issues an automatic stay, which is a federal injunction. The stay immediately halts the collection efforts of collection agencies, debtors and even government agencies. In most cases, this means no more calls, letters or other messages. It also stops other negative financial actions against you, including:
- Home foreclosure
- Eviction (with few exceptions)
- Disconnection of your utilities
- Repossession of your vehicle
- Attempts to recoup government benefit overpayments (such as a mistakenly large welfare payment)
- Collection of judgments made against you like garnished wages and levies
Suspension of collection actions and harassment are a much-need opportunity to catch your breath and focus on the goal of bankruptcy: finding a long-term solution to your debt problems.
The Limits of the Automatic Stay
The automatic stay is a great benefit of filing for bankruptcy, but it is a break rather than a solution. The debts are still there until they are discharged or reorganized/repaid in bankruptcy. In most cases, the automatic stay will remain in effect throughout the duration of your case. In Chapter 13, that could be three to five years. In Chapter 7, it could be a matter of months. But the good news is that if your bankruptcy is successful, you will not be hearing from these creditors again anyway.
You should also know that not all actions or communications are halted by the automatic stay. Exceptions include:
- Attempts to enforce or establish child support payments or alimony
- Attempts to enforce or establish paternity actions
- Divorce proceedings
- Tax proceedings such as audits
- Criminal proceedings against you
- Collection of debts that you incurred after your bankruptcy petition was filed
Our experienced Oklahoma City, OK debt protection attorney team can help you to address any challenges not halted by the automatic stay.
Learn More About Your Rights and Legal Options
Much of what you will need to know about bankruptcy protections and responsibilities will be case-specific to you. Therefore, the best way to learn about your rights and options is to contact an experienced Oklahoma City, OK debt protection attorney. Our firm is proud to help Americans resolve their overwhelming debt issues and find a new start through bankruptcy.
If you are ready to get started or get answers to your questions, give us a call to arrange an initial consultation with an Oklahoma City, OK debt protection attorney today. We look forward to learning more about your financial situation and about how we can be of service to you at this time.