Can Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Be Denied in Arizona?

When Arizona bankruptcy lawyers meet with clients contemplating bankruptcy, they explain the entire bankruptcy process. They’ll let you know what the general requirements are for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Here, we’ll discuss some of the reasons the court may deny your bankruptcy petition.

The Court May Think You Are Trying to Defraud Creditors

When you meet with your Arizona bankruptcy lawyer, they’re going to ask you if you’ve ever filed for bankruptcy before. If you have, you need to let them know. The last thing you want to happen is the court deny your petition because you had filed for bankruptcy within the last several years. For a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the court will go back eight (8) years. If your case involves a Chapter 13, they’ll only go back six (6) years. If they see that you have filed a recent bankruptcy, your petition won’t be approved. They’ll also check to make sure you aren’t trying to fraudulently get a debt discharged in bankruptcy.

The Trustee Believes a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is Warranted

You likely decided to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy because you feel like you’re swimming in debt. You can’t think of any other way to get the creditors off your back. However, while you feel this way, the trustee may see it quite differently. They’re going to do something called a means test. This means they’ll look at your income, your monthly bills and your total debt. If they feel that you earn enough to make monthly payments on your debt, one of two things may happen. Your petition could be denied all together. Or they may convert your Chapter 7 bankruptcy to a Chapter 13 reorganization.

Your Arizona Bankruptcy Lawyer Can’t Prove You Completed Credit Counseling

In order for the court to process your bankruptcy filing, they need to see proof that you completed a credit counseling course. These courses are available online and they don’t take very long. You pay your fee for the course and then you can complete the test from your computer. Once you complete the class, you’ll receive a certificate via email. You can print this out and use it as proof that you took the required credit counseling sessions. If you don’t complete the class by the deadline, your petition will be dismissed, and you’ll have to start all over again.

You Failed to Pay the Required Filing Fee

In order to file bankruptcy in Arizona, you have to pay a filing fee of $338. Until this fee is paid, your petition will not be processed. If you don’t have the whole thing, your Arizona bankruptcy lawyer can request a payment plan on your behalf. If you make your payments on time, the court will wait to process your petition until the final payment has been received. If you miss a payment, your case will likely be dismissed, and you’ll have to start all over again. If you can’t afford payments, you can always ask for a fee waiver due to a financial hardship. However, the court very rarely honors these requests.

Call an Experienced Arizona Bankruptcy Lawyer Today

If you’re considering bankruptcy and are not sure what to do next, an Arizona bankruptcy lawyer can help. Before you file your petition, you want to make sure you qualify for a Chapter 7. An attorney may be able to look at your debts and income and let you know if your petition would be accepted. Sometimes, it takes an outsider’s perspective to see what’s right in front of you. What you should do is call our office and schedule a meeting with one of our skilled Arizona bankruptcy lawyers. They have handled hundreds of bankruptcies over the years. They know the law and they should be able to give you a better idea of what your options are.