It used to be easier to file for bankruptcy in New Jersey than it is now. In 2005 they changed The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act, which was designed to curb “abusive consumer bankruptcy filings”. Despite what many people say you definitely will need to have an attorney to file for bankruptcy in New Jersey. There are a lot of loopholes in the law, that you may miss. By just missing one of these you can end up owing a lot more than before you filed for bankruptcy in New Jersey.
The first thing you need to do to file for bankruptcy in New Jersey is get all of your papers together. By papers I mean your debt. You will need all of your credit card statements, every piece of paper that shows exactly what you own. You will then need to compile a list of your assets. What usually happens when you file for bankruptcy in New Jersey, is they will take a look at your assets and see what the value is. If there is enough value in your assets they will probably be sold off to pay for your debt.
Since this new law has been passed you can no longer just get rid of your debt by filling bankruptcy. You still have to pay at least a certain percentage of what you owe. Before you even think about filing bankruptcy you will want to take the time and ask your attorney, if this is the best option for you. If you are married then you will want to take the time and discuss the issue with your spouse. Make sure that you explore all of your options before you file for bankruptcy. What Chapter 7 bankruptcy actually does is permit debtors who have more debt than their non-exempt assets a way to get their debt paid. You will get to get those assets that are exempt.
There are however some debts that you are not allowed to discharge. Such as alimony, maintenance or support. Or if the creditor files a complaint in the bankruptcy case. In addition your tax debts which have been incurred to pay federal taxes must be paid. Even court fines and penalties, such as motor vehicle surcharges and municipal and criminal court fines, must be paid. If you are married you can also file joint debt, just make sure your attorney agrees that this is the right course of action that will benefit the both of you.
Another thing to consider before you file for bankruptcy in New Jersey is your attorney’s fees. Go over this prior to you even discussing your bankruptcy case with your attorney. Make sure that you sign some type of agreement, that will clearly outline how much you must pay in fees for the attorney services.
The last piece of advice that I would like to share about how to file for bankruptcy in New Jersey is to make sure you read the fine print on every document that you sign. Even if your attorney says they have read it already, you should be aware of everything.