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Will you owe anything after a Chapter 7 filing?

If you're thinking of filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, you're probably attracted to the idea of discharging all of your debt and having a clean slate. Since Chapter 7 is liquidation bankruptcy, this is exactly what it can do—as opposed to Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which leaves you with a payment play.

However, even after you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, there may be some debts that you owe. It's very important to understand these so that you can be properly prepared, rather than assuming you won't owe a cent. Debts you may need to consider include:

-- Court fees-- Any debts that did not get listed on the paperwork when the case began-- The vast majority of student loans; there are exceptions, but these usually do not get eliminated-- Recent back taxes that you owe-- Any penalties, fines or restitution that the government has ordered you to pay-- Child support payments-- Alimony payments-- Debts from other court cases. For example, if you were involved in a DUI accident and told to pay the other party to compensate for injury costs, you cannot discharge those payments by declaring bankruptcy.-- Debts you tried to eliminate in a prior bankruptcy case and were told were non-dischargeable.

Clearly, some of these things are specific and may not be an issue to you. Still, it's wise to go over this list so that you don't assume all debts will automatically be forgiven. You can then create a proper budget and a financial plan in the wake of your bankruptcy filing so that you can take care of what you still owe and move forward.

Source: FIndLaw, "Debts that Remain After a Chapter 7 Discharge," accessed Nov. 23, 2015

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