Before individuals can complete their petition for bankruptcy they are
required to take a means test, as stipulated by the 2005 Bankruptcy
Act. During the means test all expenses and income will be analyzed
against the income and expenses of the entire state of Missouri for the
past six months. If the income and expenses come below the median then
the individual will be eligible for Chapter Seven bankruptcy. If an
individual falls above the state median for expenses and income, he or
she will be subject to Chapter Thirteen bankruptcy.
This means test will also be able to determine how much an individual
is able to currently pay on his or her debts a month. If one hundred
dollars can be paid but no more a month, then Chapter Seven bankruptcy
is the best option. If one hundred sixty-six dollars can be paid a
month or more, then Chapter Thirteen is the best option.
The United States has recently stipulated a new act for bankruptcy.
This law will hinder those who abuse the bankruptcy system. To keep
abuse of this system at bay, the act adds new restrictions for Chapter
Seven bankruptcy, increased payments for Chapter Thirteen bankruptcy,
The Bankruptcy Process
The bankruptcy process in Missouri begins with organizing all current
income resources, all monthly living expenses, any major financial
transactions over the past two years, secured debts, unsecured debts,
and property assets -- possessions that do not include real estate. Tax
returns from the past two years, motor vehicle titles, real estate
deeds, and all other loan documents all need to be collected.
When collecting these documents it can be helpful to acquire assistance
from an attorney. He or she will be able to insure that no paperwork is
missing. Once petitioned, if the bankruptcy court finds that the
paperwork is incorrect or that the information provided is false, the
case will be thrown out. The entire bankruptcy process can be done
online through Internet resources and attorneys, through do-it-yourself
Internet resources, or in person with an attorney.
After all the paperwork has been collected, an individual then is
responsible for determining any exempt property. This is the property
that will not be subject to liquidation during Chapter Seven
bankruptcy. These kinds of property are categorized by the state of
Missouri and designated under specific money values.
Most exempt items cannot exceed three thousand dollars or seven hundred
dollars, depending on the category of the property. Missouri residents
have the right to choose federal bankruptcy exemptions over Missouri
exemptions, if they so choose. Once a petition has been granted a
trustee will liquidate the non-exempt property to use for paying
Filing for Bankruptcy
All bankruptcy forms will be filed to the Missouri district bankruptcy
court. Despite bankruptcy being caused by lack of funds, filing for
bankruptcy is not free. Filing for Chapter Seven bankruptcy will cost
two hundred seventy-four dollars. Filing for Chapter Thirteen
bankruptcy will cost one hundred eighty-nine dollars. These fees cannot
be waived but can be paid in specific installments, if necessary.