It is essential to know your rights in regard to debt collectors. If you have fallen behind on your debts, you might have started getting threats from debt collectors that they are going to garnish your wages, foreclose on your home, or repossess your car. It is important to act quickly to avoid these serious consequences.
Gaining Immediate Protection Through the Automatic Stay
The automatic stay is a restraining order against your creditors that goes into effect the minute you file bankruptcy. The automatic stay remains in effect until a bankruptcy judge grants further orders that fully or partially lift the stay. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, it can provide protection for several months, while in Chapter 13, the protection lasts as long as the bankruptcy case is ongoing. The relief provided by the stay stops creditors from collection activity whether they are companies or governmental agencies. It puts an immediate stop to actions such as:
Garnishment of wages and bank accounts
Wage garnishment grants your employer permission to withhold a specific portion of your paycheck and send it directly to whomever you owe money to until your debt is resolved. There are various types of wage garnishment but your legal right includes caps on how much can be taken at once.
Foreclosure on your property
Foreclosure occurs when a homeowner fails to make payments, violating the terms of their mortgage loan plan. Additionally, if the homeowner doesn’t pay their property taxes or homeowner association fees, they are also subject to foreclosure. This process grants your mortgage company permission to obtain ownership of your property.
Repossession of vehicles and other personal property
If you fail to make your car payments, a lender can repossess your vehicle. However, they can’t legally keep and sell any of your personal belongings within the vehicle. If you are unable to reobtain your personal belongings after repossession, you might be eligible to file a claim against the creditor.
Debt collection phone calls and letters
Harassment is illegal, and debt collectors will often try to violate the law to get money from people. Therefore, it is important to know your rights if you receive any debt collection calls or letters. First, you should ensure the debt and debt collector are legitimate. Then, you should identify the debt. You should also keep records of any letters you receive in case you need to dispute the case later.
Pursuing Long-Term Debt Relief
Whether you will be able to permanently avoid garnishment, foreclosure, or repossession depends on the details of your financial circumstances and bankruptcy case. Many unsecured debts can be permanently discharged so that your creditors cannot try to garnish your wages once your bankruptcy case is over. We have found success in helping clients save their homes and stop repossession.
Learn more about eliminating debt with bankruptcy discharge
Middle Tennessee’s Top Bankruptcy Attorneys
Every bankruptcy case is unique. We help clients use the automatic stay procedure to obtain immediate protection from garnishment, foreclosure, and repossession. Then, we pursue long-term solutions customized to each client’s needs. Having handled more than 25,000 cases, our bankruptcy attorneys have the experience to help you find the right approach for your specific circumstances.
Flexer Law has been serving the legal needs of Middle Tennessee residents since 1981. Our experienced bankruptcy attorneys will work diligently on your behalf to provide the best financial outcome for you.
We have three office locations throughout Middle Tennessee to accommodate your legal needs. Contact us for a free consultation, and we’ll get started on finding the best solution to get your financial life back on track.