This month marks the eight year anniversary of the passing of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act.
Back in 2005, some important changes were made to the bankruptcy laws that have made a significant impact on consumers and how the system works.
When the laws were changed eight years ago, there was a push to help debtors claim debt relief under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code. The changes that would follow would make it more difficult for people to qualify for Chapter 7, by the implementation of the means test. This test was designed to weed out those would be deemed as having enough disposable income to satisfy at least a portion of their debt obligations, having them only eligible for a Chapter 13 filing. The means test requirement is driven by the motive to protect the bankruptcy process and prevent abuse of the system.
The anniversary of these law changes are particularly important this years as it means the eight year waiting period between Chapter 7 filings has expired. This means that anyone experiencing financial hardship today may be eligible to seek Chapter 7 bankruptcy, even if they have filed a prior Chapter 7 in 2005 or earlier.
As with any major financial decision, it is always important to seek the guidance of an experienced Clearwater bankruptcy attorney. The right representation can help you review all of your debt relief options and determine whether bankruptcy is right for your family.