Categories: BankruptcyCOVID-19

Filing Bankruptcy in Florida During Lockdown

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Life keeps happening. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a hurricane or pandemic, nothing ever stops. With so many layoffs, furloughs, and companies waiting for their small business loans to come through, there is a time and a place for bankruptcy. Even during Florida’s stay-at-home order, Van Horn Law Group is ready, willing, and able to help you with your personal or small business bankruptcy. We have the tools, the technology, and the expertise for filing bankruptcy in Florida during the lockdown.

Tech Breakdown for Filing Bankruptcy in Florida

Everyone knows about the Internet, and people know about applications and browser extensions that can help them increase their productivity. Among these tools are FaceTime, Zoom, and an old favorite familiar to many who were online in the early 2000s – Skype. These applications allow face-to-face communication with our clients over a mobile phone or computer. Of course, there are also telephone consultations available, and as always, your first consultation is free.

How the Courts are Operating

The Florida Southern District Bankruptcy Courts have been closed to closed to the public since March 30th. Filing bankruptcy in Florida has had to change to meet the requirements for social distancing and safety for all parties. Just as we are conducting consultations with clients via video and telephone, the courts are holding virtual hearings. A few points:

  1. Your stimulus check, when it arrives, is not considered as part of your income but IS regarded as an asset when you file for bankruptcy. Your creditors may have a claim on it, and it may need to be turned over to the trustee.
  2. If you are involved in a reorganization Chapter 11 for your business or a Chapter 13, you may be able to modify your payments depending on the economic impact of COVID19 on your finances.
  3. Make your payments, if possible, while waiting to petition for a modification of reorganization terms. If the impact of COVID19 is causing considerable hardship, you may be able to modify it to a Chapter 7.
  4. If you have not yet had a 341 meeting, your discharge may be postponed until a virtual meeting can be scheduled. Virtual meetings and hearings are being held for most matters via services such as Courtcall.

If you are considering filing for bankruptcy, the courts are open, though you may need to sign some documents in person. New filings are moving along, just at a slower rate as the courts adjust to the new normal.

Should You File Now or Later?

That’s something only you can decide. The automatic stay goes into effect, and you can have immediate relief from your debts, such as credit card payments and even rent. You might end up getting some relief from the Paycheck Protection Act, or receive unemployment, a tax refund, or a stimulus check – it might even be enough to get you through and keep up with rent, bills, and other expenses. Then, after that money’s gone, what happens?

Bankruptcy is often seen as something awful and shameful, but it is a right that has been guaranteed to individuals for over 120 years. Filing for bankruptcy can give you relief from your debts, free up some income to keep you afloat, and let you get your breath. Yes, your credit rating will take a hit, but it will not be the slow dribble of trying to make minimum payments month after month. Whether you choose a Chapter 7 or 11 for your business or a Chapter 7 or 13 for yourself, don’t go it alone – get real help from an attorney who specializes in debt and bankruptcy.

The Help You Need

Filing for bankruptcy in Florida, whether it is personal or business, can be complicated. Only a licensed attorney is allowed to give you legal advice. Doing it yourself or using the services of a bankruptcy preparer may not get you the result you need and could even result in the dismissal of your petition. When you are filing for bankruptcy in Florida, the smart money says get an attorney with experience and a backbone.

We Are Virtual

At Van Horn Law Group, we have spent more than a decade building a reputation one client at a time. We are the law group that cares very much about your situation and your outcomes. In this time of unprecedented circumstances, with so many in need, we promise that we are here to help. Get in touch with us and set up a telephone or a virtual conference consultation with us. As always, your first consultation is absolutely free, and we will offer you the best legal advice on filing bankruptcy in Florida.

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Filing Bankruptcy in Florida During Lockdown
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Filing bankruptcy in Florida has had to change to meet the requirements for social distancing and safety for all parties.
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Chad Van Horn
Van Horn Law Group
Van Horn Law Group
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Chad Van Horn

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