In the times of this less than stellar economy, more and more people are finding out what it means to be bankrupt. People who have worked all their lives to support themselves and their families have become surrounded by debt and lose all hope. Personal bankruptcy can be scary, but you can escape it, as you will see by reading the following article.

Laws regarding bankruptcy vary by state, so you need to find a lawyer that can walk you through the entire process and help keep your rights protected. In several cases, you can keep your car and your home, but it’s your attorney that will tell you what rights you have, what you can keep, and what you will need to surrender.

Do some research to find out which assets you could lose by filing for personal bankruptcy. Check the bankruptcy laws in your state to find out if certain items are excluded from your bankruptcy filing. Be sure that you study this list. Make yourself aware of any assets you have that could be seized. Without reading the list, you may be shocked at which possessions can be taken from you.

An important tip regarding personal bankruptcy is, gaining an understanding of what sorts of debts can, and cannot be included in a discharge. By realizing that some obligations are not considered dischargeable under the bankruptcy code, it is possible to make a wiser, more informed choice when it comes to making the decision to file a petition.

A lot of bankruptcy attorneys will let you have a consultation, so try several out. Make sure you meet with a licensed attorney rather than a paralegal or assistant, because it is illegal for these people to give legal advice. Considering several different lawyers can help find someone to trust.

Before filing for bankruptcy ensure that the need is there. It might be possible to consolidate some of your debt instead. It is not a quick and easy process to file for bankruptcy. It will also limit your ability to get credit for the next few years. Therefore, you must make sure that there is no other option that you could take before you file for bankruptcy.

Visit your primary care doctor for a complete physical prior to filing for bankruptcy. If you wait until after you begin the process, you will not be able to claim your medical bills on your bankruptcy. This is especially helpful if you do not have any kind of health insurance.

Be extra vigilant about your spending habits until your hearing. Judges take a look at your entire financial picture. They even look at the things you are doing right now, to see if you are trying to take advantage of the system. Show that you are now on the right track financially.

See what the value is on your home. If you are upside down on your mortgage, you may be able to eliminate your second mortgage. The main guideline for this is that your home must be worth more than what you owe on the first mortgage. This could really help your financial situation by relieving you from that large second mortgage payment each month.

When it comes to personal bankruptcy, be sure that you do not believe that all of your credit card balances will be eliminated. This is important to know because you do not want to find yourself in a worse situation than you are already in. Make sure all of your debts are accounted for.

Make sure to comply with the educational requirements for bankruptcy. You have to meet with an approved credit counselor within the six months before you file. You have to take an approved financial management course. If you don’t take these courses in time, the court will dismiss your bankruptcy.

If you have a credit card with your local credit union, it may be one that does not have to be given up due to bankruptcy. Check with your credit union to find out if the line of credit will continue after the bankruptcy is final. You still must be sure to include it on your application with your other debts.

Fight the temptation to rack up large credit card balances just before filing. The creditor will take a look at your account history. If they determine that you charged a lot before applying for bankruptcy, they can file a request with the court to hold you responsible for the amount that you charged.

Bankruptcy is something that is set up to help you. Do not think that your life is over because of bankruptcy. There will be some limitations to things that you can do, however, they are only temporary. There are also organizations out there that can help you get your life back in order after bankruptcy. If you filed or are thinking of filing, you should look into these organizations. There is hope.

Don’t take filing for bankruptcy lightly. Remember that bankruptcy negatively affects your credit for seven to ten years and that you’ll have trouble getting loans for the first few years after filing. Talk to a credit counselor or an attorney to make sure you understand the ramifications, and that this step is right for you.

Be completely up front and honest about your situation and assets to avoid courts from dismissing your case. If the court catches you deliberately hiding assets or income, it can bar you from filing and even refilling for bankruptcy on debts that you have listed within the petition. This makes it impossible to remove debts.

When you meet with your lawyer, bring along all of your financial records. Your lawyer will want to see loan documents from your car and house. They will also want to see your credit card bills and any other financial documents you have that show you are in debt. You will also need to bring any documents showing your assets.

Filing personal bankruptcy can provide you with a safe haven from creditors and bill collectors. Navigating your way through bankruptcy to a debt-free life can help get you on the road to a more positive financial future. Personal bankruptcy is not for everyone, but it is worth investigating to see if it makes sense for you.