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Client First Bankruptcy is committed to offering the best possible legal representation for your bankruptcy. Our expert attorneys have counseled over 10,000 consumers in regards to bankruptcy filing.
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Client First Bankruptcy Disclaimer: Attorney Advertisement Law Offices of Jason Blust, LLC, d/b/a Client First Bankruptcy, LLC, has licensed attorneys and offices in Illinois, Colorado and Florida. Jason Blust is licensed in Illinois. Law Office of Jason Blust, LLC, d/b/a Client First Bankruptcy 211 Wacker Dr., Ste. 300 Chicago, IL 60606 800.383.6004 contactus@clientfirstbankruptcy.com The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon advertisements. No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. FREE BACKGROUND INFORMATION AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST LEGAL DISCLAIMER – TERMS & CONDITIONS YOU SHOULD READ THIS PRIVACY POLICY CAREFULLY BEFORE SUBMITTING ANY INFORMATION. BY SUBMITTING INFORMATION YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOU HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD THIS POLICY AND THAT YOU AGREED TO BE BOUND BY ITS TERMS. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE TERMS OF THIS PRIVACY POLICY, PLEASE EXIT THIS PAGE WITHOUT ACCESSING OR USING OUR WEB SITE OR ANY OF OUR SERVICES. If you do not agree to these terms, you may not use this Site. Client First Bankruptcy (hereinafter referred to as “CFB”, “We”, or “Our”), is a debt relief agency helping people file for bankruptcy under the bankruptcy code, has the right, in our sole discretion, to modify, add or remove any terms or conditions of this Agreement without giving individual notice to you, by posting the changes on the Site. Your continuing use of the Site constitutes your acceptance of any such changes. Nothing in this website is to be construed as an offer for legal services. Legal services are only offered once a CFB attorney, or sponsoring attorney, has had an opportunity to review the specific facts of a case at a consultation and specifically indicates a willingness to take on the representation. DISCLOSURES REQUIRED UNDER 11 U.S.C. §527 AND §342 NOTICE #1: Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §342(b) (1) and§ 527(a) (1) PURPOSE, BENEFITS AND COSTS OF BANKRUPTCY Bankruptcy is a federal court preceding that provides relief to people and businesses that are having financial difficulty. The relief comes in the form of an “automatic stay” which generally stops most collection proceedings and harassment from creditors. The cost of filing a bankruptcy consists of a filing fee which varies depending on the type of case you are filing (see below) and if you choose to hire a lawyer to represent you, the lawyer will likely charge you a fee for the representation. Additionally, there may be costs to obtain necessary information and documentation required by the bankruptcy code, bankruptcy rules and local rules. The discussion here is a brief overview and no one should base their decision as to whether to file or not to file bankruptcy solely on this information. Anyone considering bankruptcy is encouraged to seek the advice and assistance of experienced counsel who practices bankruptcy law to determine their options and what is best for their situation. DISCLOSURES REQUIRED UNDER 11 U.S.C. §527 AND 3§42 NOTICE #1: Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §342(b) (1) and §527(a) (1) PURPOSE, BENEFITS AND COSTS OF BANKRUPTCY Bankruptcy is a federal court preceding that provides relief to people and businesses that are having financial difficulty. The relief comes in the form of an “automatic stay” which generally stops most collection proceedings and harassment from creditors. The cost of filing a bankruptcy consists of a filing fee which varies depending on the type of case you are filing (see below) and if you choose to hire a lawyer to represent you, the lawyer will likely charge you a fee for the representation. Additionally, there may be costs to obtain necessary information and documentation required by the bankruptcy code, bankruptcy rules and local rules. The discussion here is meant only as a brief overview and no one should base their decision as to whether to file or not to file bankruptcy solely on this information. Bankruptcy is complex and a number of factors and considerations must be taken into account in making a determination to file or not. Anyone considering bankruptcy is encouraged to seek the advice and assistance of experienced counsel who practices bankruptcy law. What Bankruptcy Can and Can’t Do Bankruptcy Can: 1. Allow you to eliminate both secure and unsecured debt. 2. Stop foreclosure proceedings 3. Stop wage garnishment 4. Prevent utility shut-offs 5. Prevent repossessions 6. Bankruptcy can also allow you to consolidate your debts and lower your monthly payments. Bankruptcy Cannot: 1. Discharge certain debts: typically you cannot eliminate domestic support orders (child support, maintenance, or alimony), most student loans, criminal fines, and most taxes. 2. Eliminate debt incurred after the case is filed. 3. Eliminate secured liens without surrendering the property 4. Protect co-signors. Eliminating your obligations will not eliminate a co-signor’s obligation. Bankruptcy is a complex area of law and we encourage you to discuss your specific situation with one of our attorneys before drawing any conclusions. Types of Bankruptcy Available to Individual Consumer Debtors The two most common forms of bankruptcy that consumers file are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. However, there are four forms of bankruptcy available. Below is a description of each form available. Chapter 7: Liquidation (Attorneys Fees plus a court cost of $306) Chapter 7 is designed for debtors in financial difficulties that do not have the ability to pay their existing debt. Debtors whose debts are primarily consumer debts are subject to a “means test” designed to determine whether the case should be permitted to proceed under chapter 7. If your income is greater than the median income for your state of residence and family size, in some cases, creditors have the right to file a motion requesting the court dismiss your case as an abuse under §707(b) of the United States Bankruptcy Code. It is up to the court to decide whether the case should be dismissed. Under chapter 7, you may claim certain property exempt under applicable law. Some states force debtors in the state to only claim property exempt pursuant to state law, while other states allow debtors to choose to claim property exempt under either state or federal law. A trustee can take possession and sell any non-exempt property and use the sale proceeds to pay your creditors. The purpose of filing a chapter 7 case is to obtain a discharge of the debts existing as of the date you file a case. However, not all debts are dischargeable. If you have committed certain kinds of improper conduct described in the Bankruptcy Code, the court may deny you a discharge and, if it does, the purpose for which you filed the bankruptcy petition will be defeated. Even if you receive a general discharge, some particular debts are not discharged under the law. Therefore, you may be responsible to pay for most taxes and student loans; debts incurred to pay no dischargeable taxes; domestic support and property settlement obligations; most fines, penalties, forfeitures, and criminal restitution obligations; certain debts which are not properly listed in your paperwork; and debts for death or personal injury caused by operation of a motor vehicle, vessel, or aircraft while intoxicated from alcohol or drugs. Also, if a creditor can prove that a debt arose from fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, or theft, or from a willful or malicious injury, the bankruptcy court may determine that the debt is not discharged. Chapter 13: Repayment of All or Part of the Debts of an Individual with Regular Income (attorney fees or costs plus filing fee of $281). Chapter 13 is designed for individuals with regular income who would like to pay all or part of their debts in installments over a period of time. You are only eligible for chapter 13 if your debts do not exceed certain dollar amounts set forth in the Bankruptcy Code. Under chapter 13, you must file with the court a plan to repay your creditors all or part of the money you owe them from your future earnings. The period allowed by the court to repay your debts may be three or five years, depending upon your income and other factors. The court must approve your plan of repayment before it can take effect. After completing the payments under your plan, your debts are generally discharged except for domestic support obligations; most student loans; certain taxes; most criminal fines and restitution obligations; certain debts which are not properly listed in your bankruptcy papers; certain debts for acts that caused death or personal injury; and certain long term secured obligations (like mortgages). Chapter 11: Reorganization (attorney fees or costs plus filing fee of $1,231) Chapter 11 is designed for the reorganization of a business but is also available to individual consumer debtors. Its provisions are quite complicated and any decision by an individual to file a chapter 11 petition should be reviewed by an attorney. Chapter 12: Family Farmer or Fisherman (attorney fees or costs plus filing fee of $246) Chapter 12 is designed to permit family farmers and fishermen to repay their debts over a period of time from future earnings and is similar to chapter 13. The eligibility requirements, however, are restrictive, limiting its use to those whose income arises primarily from a family-owned farm or commercial fishing operation. SERVICES AVAILABLE FROM CREDIT COUNSELING AGENCIES With limited exceptions, §109(h) of the Bankruptcy Code requires that all individual debtors who file for bankruptcy relief on or after October 17, 2005, receive a briefing that outlines the available opportunities for credit counseling and provides assistance in performing a budget analysis. The briefing must be given within 180 days before the bankruptcy filing. The briefing may be provided individually or in a group (including briefings conducted by telephone or over the Internet) and must be provided by a nonprofit budget and credit counseling agency approved by the United States Trustee or bankruptcy administrator. The clerk of the bankruptcy court has a list that you may consult of the approved budget and credit counseling agencies in your jurisdiction. Each debtor in a joint case must complete the course. BANKRUPTCY CRIMES AND AVAILABILITY OF BANKRUPTCY PAPERS TO LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS A person who knowingly and fraudulently conceals assets or makes a false oath or statement under penalty of perjury, either orally or in writing, in connection with a bankruptcy case is subject to a fine, imprisonment, or both. All information supplied by a debtor in connection with a bankruptcy case is subject to examination by the Attorney General acting through the Office of the United States Trustee, the Office of the United States Attorney, and other components and employees of the Department of Justice. WARNING: 11 U.S.C. §721(a)(1) of the Bankruptcy Code requires that you promptly file detailed information regarding your creditors, assets, liabilities, income, expenses and general financial condition. Your bankruptcy case may be dismissed if this information is not filed with the court within the time deadlines set by the Bankruptcy Code, the Bankruptcy Rules, and the local rules of the court. NOTICE #2: Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §342(b) (2) FRAUD & CONCEALMENT PROHIBITED It is important that you understand the following: Some or all of the information you provide in connection with your bankruptcy case will be filed with the United States Bankruptcy Court in the appropriate jurisdiction on forms or documents that you will be required to sign and declare as true under penalty of perjury. A person who knowingly and fraudulently conceals assets or makes false oaths or statements under penalty of perjury in connection with a bankruptcy case shall be subject to fine, imprisonment, or both. All information you provide in connection with your bankruptcy case is subject to examination and audit by the Attorney General of the United States. NOTICE #3: Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §527(a) (2) MANDATORY DISCLOSURE TO CONSUMERS WHO ARE CONTEMPLATING FILING FOR BANKRUPTCY PLEASE TAKE NOTICE THAT: All information that you are required to provide with the filing of your case and thereafter, while your case is pending, must be complete, accurate, and truthful. You must disclose ALL of your assets and liabilities! Further, you must identify the replacement value of each asset (as defined in the Bankruptcy Code, § 506) must be stated in documents where requested after reasonable inquiry to establish the value. For most property used and acquired for personal, family, or household purposes, replacement value means the amount retail merchant would charge for “used” property similar to what you own considering the age and condition of the property. Replacement cost does NOT mean the amount you would have to pay a retail merchant for a “new” item. For many cases involving used clothing, furniture, computers, etc. replacement cost may be “yard sale” value, or what the used item might sell for on eBay. With regard to antiques, jewelry or collectables, replacement value might be the retail value. For motor vehicles, replacement value would be the third party purchase value. For real estate, replacement value would be what the property would sell for at current market value. For cash and bank accounts it is the actual amount on deposit. For stocks and bonds, it is their market value as of the date your case is filed and the value is the cash value of what the stock could sell for in the market, or the amount a bond could be redeemed for at the time of filing. Before you file a case, you are subject to a “means test.” The “means test” is a statutory test designed to determine whether or not you qualify to file a case under chapter 7 of the bankruptcy code, and if not, how much you need to pay to your unsecured creditors in a chapter 13 filing. You must therefore state, after reasonable inquiry, your current monthly income, the amount of all expenses as specified in §707(b) (2), and, in a case under chapter 13 of this title, disposable income (determined in accordance with §707(b) (2), are required to be stated after reasonable inquiry. Any information you provide during the case may be audited pursuant to Title 11 of the United States Code and failure to provide information may result in dismissal of the case or other sanction, including criminal sanctions! NOTICE #4: Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §527(b) IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT BANKRUPTCY ASSISTANCE SERVICES FROM AN ATTORNEY OR BANKRUPTCY PETITION PREPARER If you decide to seek bankruptcy relief, you can represent yourself, you can hire an attorney to represent you, or you can get help in some localities from a bankruptcy petition preparer who is not an attorney. THE LAW REQUIRES AN ATTORNEY OR BANKRUPTCY PETITION PREPARER TO GIVE YOU A WRITTEN CONTRACT SPECIFYING WHAT THE ATTORNEY OR BANKRUPTCY PETITION PREPARER WILL DO FOR YOU AND HOW MUCH IT WILL COST. Ask to see the contract before you hire anyone. The following information helps you understand what must be done in a routine bankruptcy case to help you evaluate how much service you need. Although bankruptcy can be complex, many cases are routine. Before filing a bankruptcy case, either you or your attorney should analyze your eligibility for different forms of debt relief available under the Bankruptcy Code and which form of relief is most likely to be beneficial for you. Be sure you understand the relief you can obtain and its limitations. To file a bankruptcy case, documents called a Petition, Schedules and Statement of Financial Affairs, as well as in some cases a Statement of Intention need to be prepared correctly and filed with the bankruptcy court. You will have to pay a filing fee to the bankruptcy court. Once your case starts, you will have to attend the required first meeting of creditors where you may be questioned by a court official called a ‘trustee’ and by creditors. If you choose to file a chapter 7 case, you may be asked by a creditor to reaffirm a debt. You may want help deciding whether to do so. A creditor is not permitted to coerce you into reaffirming your debts. If you choose to file a chapter 13 case in which you repay your creditors what you can afford over 3 to 5 years, you may also want help with preparing your chapter 13 plan and with the confirmation hearing on your plan which will be before a bankruptcy judge. If you select another type of relief under the Bankruptcy Code other than chapter 7 or chapter 13, you will want to find out what should be done from someone familiar with that type of relief. Your bankruptcy case may also involve litigation. You are generally permitted to represent yourself in litigation in bankruptcy court, but only attorneys, not bankruptcy petition preparers, can give you legal advice. [Statement contained in and required by 11 USC §527(b).] ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF RECEIPT By using this Site and/or otherwise accepting this Agreement, user acknowledges that user received a copy or has been provided access to all of the following notices: Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §342(b) (1) and §527(a) (1) Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §342(b) (2) Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §527(a) (2) Notice Mandated by 11 U.S.C. §527 (b) AGREEMENT 1. Background This Site is maintained by Client First Bankruptcy, a law firm and debt relief agency. All attorneys and/or law firms promoted through this web site are also Debt Relief Agencies. The law firm does not endorse any of its sponsoring attorneys and makes no representations as to the advice given or as to the quality of the legal services offered by sponsoring attorneys. CFB attorneys are licensed in the following states: Colorado, Florida, and Illinois. While CFB is a law firm, CFB does not receive any portion of any unaffiliated sponsoring attorney’s fees and any contracts for representation that you make with any of the unaffiliated sponsoring attorneys are strictly between you and the unaffiliated sponsoring lawyer and do not involve CFB. CFB charges a reasonable marketing fee to its unaffiliated sponsoring attorneys to offset the cost and expense of maintaining this Site. Such costs and expenses include, but are not limited to, web marketing, site maintenance and administration. 2. Purpose The materials and information provided on this Site are for informational purposes only and may not reflect current legal developments or variations in the law of different jurisdictions. Nothing on this Site should be construed as legal advice or used as a substitute for legal advice. All information is general in nature and should not be taken to apply in every situation. 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TRADE NAMES The firm Law Office of Jason Blust, LLC, operates under the trade name Client First Bankruptcy, LLC in those states where trade names are permitted. It does not use its trade name to advertise or do business in the states of Arizona, Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Nevada, New York, Ohio, and Texas. As Client First Bankruptcy, LLC is a national law firm; its advertising and website are viewed in every state by consumers. It specifically does not intend the use of a trade name on a national basis to be deceptive or confusing to potential clients in any particular state. BACKGROUND INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST Before user decides to hire any of CFB’s sponsoring attorneys, user should ask sponsoring attorneys to provide free written information about their qualifications and experience. Additional information about particular attorneys is also available by contacting the Bar Association in the State in which the lawyer or law firm is licensed. CFB provides background information on its attorneys within the Content on this Site including bar admissions, experience, and personal background information. Additional information may be available upon request. User understands and acknowledges that attorneys from time to time make career choices and change employment and user understands that CFB cannot be held liable for any damages or inconvenience if a particular attorney is not employed by the law firm at a given time. CFB will take reasonable measures to insure the accuracy of its attorney listings and update Content on the Site to remove biographical information about attorneys who are no longer with the firm as well as provide biographical information about new attorneys. However, user agrees that CFB has no liability whatsoever, as stated in paragraph 13, for any errors or corrections as to attorney information provided on this Site. 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Results depend upon a variety of factors unique to each fact situation. The material on this Site is not intended to and does not include any advertisements for legal services that contain testimonials, dramatizations, or endorsements. The Site is intended to provide useful information presented in a non-sensational, objective, and understandable manner. Images and pictures on this Site, other than where indicated (i.e. attorney photographs), are not meant to depict or represent actual people or events, but are used for illustrative purposes only. This Site is not intended to advertise legal services to be performed in a particular state solely by CFB or its sponsors, unless the lawyer or law firm is specifically licensed to practice in the State. CFB nor any of its Sponsoring attorneys and law firms wish to and will knowingly accept legal representation based on or resulting from the use of this Site from a person within a particular jurisdiction to the extent the Site does not comply with the laws and regulations of any jurisdiction in which it may be received. Neither CFB nor any of its Sponsoring attorneys and law firms will knowingly accept representation based on or resulting from use of this Site from a person located out of the United States of America. STATE SPECIFIC DISCLOSURES: Colorado The Law Firm of Client First Bankruptcy does not specifically advertise or do business under a trade name in the state. Florida The hiring of an attorney is an important decision and that decision should not be based solely on advertising material. Before you decide to hire counsel to represent you, make sure you ask us or any attorney to send you free written information about the attorney’s qualifications and experience. Illinois The Illinois Supreme Court does not recognize certifications of specialties in the practice of law. A certificate, award or recognition is not required to practice law in Illinois. Law Office of Jason Blust, LLC, d/b/a Client First Bankruptcy, LLC does not provide services in all states. 22. Entire Agreement These Terms and Conditions constitute the entire agreement between CFB and User and govern the use of this Site superseding any prior agreements between User and CFB. User may also be subject to additional terms and conditions that may apply when User uses or purchases certain other services, affiliate services, third-party content, third-party software or materials found on any “hyperlinks.” 23. Choice of Forum Any disputes arising out of or related to use of this Site, this agreement, and/or the relationship between User and CFB shall be submitted for resolution to arbitration in Chicago, Illinois in accordance with the rules and procedures of the American Arbitration Association. 24. Statute of Limitations User agrees that regardless of any statute or law to the contrary, any claim or cause of action, or dispute arising out of or related to the use of this Site, this agreement and/or the relationship between User and CFB must be filed within one (1) year after such claim, cause of action, or dispute arose or such claim, dispute or cause of action shall be forever barred. 25. Waiver and Severability of Terms Should CFB fail to enforce or exercise any of its rights or provisions of this Terms and Conditions shall not constitute a waiver of such rights or provisions. If any provision of this Terms and Conditions is found by a court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, the parties nevertheless agree that the court should endeavor to give effect to the parties’ intentions as reflected in the provision and the other provisions of this Terms and Conditions shall remain in full force and effect. 26. Attorney Ethics Notice If User is an Attorney, or if you are a Sponsor participating in any aspect of this Site, you acknowledge that rules of professional conduct apply to all aspects of your participation and that you will abide by such rules. The rules include, but are not limited to, the rules relating to advertising, solicitation of clients, unauthorized practice of law, misrepresentations of fact, and due diligence. CFB disclaims any and all responsibility for attorney’s compliance with these rules. The section titles and headings in this Terms and Conditions are for convenience and organizational purposes only and have no legal or contractual effect.