You can only file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in California if your income is less than the median. If it is not, you can file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and pay off your debts through a court-approved repayment plan. You can file for bankruptcy in the district where you have been living for the past 180 days or in the district where you maintain your home, if you have been living temporarily elsewhere. Before you file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy in California, you will need to undergo credit counseling.
In our state, you can only use California exemptions and not federal bankruptcy exemptions. You will be able to choose from two different state exemptions, however—one set which offers a homestead exemption and one set which offers a wildcard exemption. Examples of California deductions include housing, transportation, food and childcare. Not only will you need to know about all of the relevant bankruptcy laws, you will need to ensure you file paperwork correctly and in a timely manner.
The forms you must complete before filing include:
You will need to gather paperwork that includes itemization of your current income, major financial transaction receipts from the past two years, monthly living expenses evidence, evidence of your debts, a list of your real and personal property, your tax returns, your deeds, your car titles and documents of any loans you have.
After the paperwork has been properly filed, you will have to complete other steps that include paying fees, meeting with creditors, attending hearings and completing a financial management course before receiving your discharge. To successfully wade through as complicated of a process as bankruptcy, you will want a knowledgeable Beverly Hills bankruptcy attorney on your side.