How the Means Test Works

Bankruptcy Means Test

Illinois Bankruptcy & Debt Relief Lawyers

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a great option for people who are underwater on their mortgages and overwhelmed by debt, but it isn’t right for everyone. In order to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the law requires that you meet certain requirements, including a series of calculations commonly referred to as the "means test."

At Sulaiman Law Group, LTD., we handle Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases for people throughout Chicago. We educate our clients about bankruptcy law and help them make the right decision for your financial well-being. If you are considering bankruptcy, we can help you understand the means test and how it applies to you.

Ready to learn more? Contact Sulaiman Law Group, LTD. for an assessment of your case. We are ready to help you!

The Bankruptcy "Means Test" & Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

The United States Bankruptcy Code applies a means test to determine whether you can file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If you do not qualify for Chapter 7 - generally because your income is too high - you may be able to pursue Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

The means test takes into account your income, and compares it to regional income and expenses standards, using a special formula. The formula takes your aggregate current monthly income over five years and subtracts certain statutorily allowed expenses.

If the remaining amount is more than $10,950 or 25 percent of your non-priority unsecured debt, the court presumes that you do not qualify for Chapter 7. You may be able to rebut this presumption by bringing to the court's attention circumstances that justify additional expenses or adjustments of your current income.

“Do I really need an attorney to help me?”

Because filing for bankruptcy is complex and because only certain people qualify, it is best to consult with a lawyer before you take action. The court holds non-lawyers filing for bankruptcy to the same standard as it holds lawyers, so it is expected that all paperwork will be submitted correctly and in a timely manner.

Filing mistakes or missed court deadlines can lead the court to dismiss your case. At Sulaiman Law Group, LTD, our experienced attorneys handle all matters for you, so that you can rest assured your bankruptcy will be handled effectively and efficiently.

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We are dedicated to providing the most innovative legal strategies, comprehensive advice and the committed representation necessary to secure the long-term objectives and the peace of mind that our clients deserve.

Contact Us

Are you facing foreclosure or other debt problems in Chicago? Contact us online or by telephone at (312) 313-1613 to speak with an experienced Chicago bankruptcy attorney regarding the bankruptcy means test and your legal options through bankruptcy.