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Are The Bankruptcy Courts Still Open During The COVID-19 Crisis?


The Bankruptcy Courts are fully operational; however, they are not physically accessible. All hearings are being held telephonically. The Judges are deciding either on the pleadings or are hearing telephonically. Meetings of Creditors are being held telephonically as well. Filing is not an issue since filings are done electronically.

Can I Actually File For Bankruptcy At This Time?

Yes, you can file bankruptcy now because all filings are done electronically. It would be wise to wait until we see what comes from this COVID-19 crisis to file when you know the full extent of your financial problems.

How Do I Even Start A Bankruptcy When Most Offices And Courthouses Are Closed?

Call our office and we will hold a tele-consultation with you. We have the capability to hold a private, secure video conference with you and you could file bankruptcy without meeting face-to-face except for one meeting to sign documents.

If I Can’t Afford Chapter 13 Payments, Will I Automatically Qualify For A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Maybe, there are many factors in determining the chapter of bankruptcy you file. Every case is different and individual circumstances dictate what is in your best interest.

Do You Expect To See A Rise In Bankruptcy Cases During And After The COVID-19 Crisis Is Over?

Unfortunately, I do anticipate a surge in bankruptcies due to COVID-19. The banks that are allowing borrowers to not pay their mortgages for 90-120 days does not automatically mean they will be modifying the loan. Currently those borrowers will just be 120 days behind and facing foreclosure. Absent a modification, a Chapter 13 will be needed to save those homes.

Will Medical Bills Be Included In Any Bankruptcy?

Every medical bill is includable in a bankruptcy. There are no limitations on what medical bills are dischargeable in bankruptcy with the exception of medical bills secured by a lien on recovery for an injury where a third party is responsible such as an auto accident.

If I Am Having Trouble Making My Car Payments And Mortgage During The COVID-19 Outbreak Should I Try And Work With The Banks Or Should I File Bankruptcy Now?

I am advising everyone to try to work with their banks at the present time. As of April 1, 2020, many of the banks stated they are working with their borrowers, forbearing on loans during this crisis. Unless someone is at risk of losing their home or vehicle, waiting to see what happens at the end of this crisis.

Is It Advisable To Let My Debt Get Worse During The COVID-19 Crisis Or Should I File For Bankruptcy Now?

Absent an emergency reason to file bankruptcy, at risk of losing their home or vehicle, waiting to see what happens at the end of this crisis is what I advise.

My Family is Living Off Credit Cards During Unemployment Due To COVID-19 Outbreak. If We File For Bankruptcy Now, Will Recent Debt Be Forgiven?

Typically, debts incurred for necessities of life such as food, rent, closing, transportation etc. is dischargeable. IF you truly need your credit cards to survive then filing bankruptcy now might not be the best solution. There may be a government bailout that will allow you to catch up. After the third round of COVID-19 assistance, the CARES act, there is already talk of a fourth round of assistance which may be to help individuals. Waiting to see how this plays out might be the best idea for the time being. Each case is fact specific and should be analyzed individually to ensure the best course of action. I recommend calling our office now to schedule a consultation to determine what is the best for your unique situation.

Instead Of Filing For Bankruptcy Due To The COVID-19 Outbreak And Unemployment, Should I Try And Apply For Loans Or New Credit Cards To Stay Afloat Until This Is Over?

It usually is not a good idea to go into more debt. There are situations where going into new debt not avoidable, however there are few situations where using new debt to get out of existing debt works well.

For more information on Bankruptcy During COVID-19 Crisis In CA, a consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (916) 915-8866 today.

California Probate Lawyer Peter Cianchetta

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(916) 915-8866

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