If you are behind on your debt and considering bankruptcy, you may want to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The means test is a requirement to be able to file chapter 7 bankruptcy as part of the bankruptcy abuse and prevention act f 2005.
If your income is lower than your state’s median, you can file Chapter 7. If it is above with at least $167 above your living expenses, you will probably not be able to file chapter 7 and file chapter 13 instead.
To determine if you can pass the means test first you need to check your states median income at the US Census website (www.census.gov) If the area you live in has a higher cost of living than the rest of the state, that will be taken into consideration when income determinations are made.
Next, you calculate your living expenses if the amount of your “extra” income equals 25% of your debt you will probably not be able to file chapter 7. Filing chapter 13 still gives you debt relief, but you will be required to make back payments in a period of three to five years. At the end of the court-approved payment plan, your qualifying debt will be eliminated.
If you have more questions about bankruptcy and would like to learn more about how you can get a fresh start, contact a Fort Worth bankruptcy attorney to find out what options you may have.