Individuals Families and
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Chapter 13 bankruptcy provides a way for debtors to repay creditors and obtain a bankruptcy discharge. By committing to repayment over a period of time, debtors receive a discharge of debt and may be able to keep their property. An important step in the process is court approval of a debtor’s proposed repayment plan. There may be objections to the plan, or the court may require elaboration in order to determine the legitimacy of the plan. A Chapter 13 confirmation hearing is the proceeding used to confirm a debt repayment plan according to Chapter 13 bankruptcy. At the Bankruptcy Center of Illinois, we represent individuals filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Our DuPage County confirmation hearing attorneys are prepared to clearly explain your legal rights and advocate for your financial needs throughout the process.
During a Chapter 13 bankruptcy case, the court may approve the debtor’s repayment plan. If there are objections to the plan, for example by a trustee or a creditor, the judge typically holds a Chapter 13 confirmation hearing. In some cases, the judge holds a confirmation hearing to address the debtor’s plan directly, reviewing the steps toward repayment.
A debt repayment plan carefully details how creditors will be repaid, at least partially. Creditors may object to plans that do not provide for specific repayment. Additionally, the trustee or bankruptcy administrator may object if the plan is unlikely to be successful. Creditors can object to any proposed activity to be taken by the trustee, the debtor, or the judge.
Common disputes include issues concerning the debtor’s claimed expenses, their proposed payments, and their right to discharge certain debt. Creditors can also take issue with a plan to abandon an asset rather than use it to pay creditors. They may also object to the general discharge of debt. If the debtor lied under oath, defrauded a creditor, destroyed records, or concealed property, they may be prevented from receiving a general discharge. The debtor would then be liable for debts after the dismissal of the bankruptcy case.
Sometimes creditors try to prevent a debtor from receiving discharge for a certain debt. If this debt includes intentional wrongdoing, such as a theft or crime, this may be central to the objection. If the debtor failed to include the debt on their bankruptcy documents, the creditor may also object. A successful objection can result in the specific debt not being discharged even upon confirmation of the Chapter 13 repayment plan.
Often, objections to confirming a debt repayment plan are resolved informally. This means they are not the center of a confirmation hearing. However, legal representation remains important at a hearing. If a debtor agrees to a debt repayment plan that does not work for them, they are unlikely to be successful.
During a confirmation hearing, the judge listens to arguments concerning the debt repayment plan. The debtor or their attorney may explain why the proposed repayment plan is legitimate. Judges may make a final determination at the confirmation hearing or allow time for the parties to resolve their disputes. An additional hearing may be required if the parties are unable to resolve their dispute. At this formal hearing, the judge would weigh evidence presented by both sides.
The process of creating a debt repayment plan is central to a successful Chapter 13 bankruptcy filing. Our experienced DuPage County bankruptcy lawyers can help you formulate and commit to a repayment plan. We provide representation at confirmation hearings and work to avoid any potential pitfalls to a successful discharge of your debt. Our office represents clients throughout Illinois, including Cook County, Chicago, Evanston, Oak Lawn, Orland Park, and other communities. To contact our office and schedule a free consultation, call us at (773) 993-0024 or reach us online.