How Much Debt Is Needed To File A Bankruptcy Case

I am often asked this question.

In the past, I asserted to bankruptcy clients who asked this question that the answer was an objective one.

I would explain, by example, that a physician or business person might be in a position to handle credit card debts of $40,000.00 and need not have to file a bankruptcy case, because his or her income potential would be enough to handle that amount of debt. I would compare this situation to an elderly person with $5,000.00 of credit cards debt with limited earnings potential and who was frail and unable to handle telephone calls from collection agents.  I would explain that the elder person may likely be a more suitable candidate for a bankruptcy filing.

Now, I have reformulated my response as a subjective one.

In considering whether to file a bankruptcy case, I ask my clients to visualize what effect a bankruptcy filing will have on their lifestyle and their family if they could discharge their debts.  I inquire whether they can get by day-to-day without a bankruptcy filing or whether a bankruptcy filing will allow them and their family to be free from the shackles of debt to  get back on track and have a normal lifestyle.

The answer of how much debt is needed for a bankruptcy filing only begins with this examination. The proper answer evolves in a discussion that I have with clients at an initial meeting that usually lasts one or two hours without any type of commitment or obligation. After our discussion concludes,  my client and I can make a joint decision that is the best for his or her unique situation.

If you are contemplating a bankruptcy filing, please call me and I will be happy to schedule you for a free consultation to discuss whether a bankruptcy filing is appropriate for you or or whether there are other alternatives,