Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Mississippi: 3 Things You Need to Know

Facing a challenging financial situation can be overwhelming when you lack the resources to understand your options. Hence, this article aims to aid those in similar circumstances. Before delving into the Chapter 7 bankruptcy process in Mississippi, consider these key points:
Information in this article does not constitute legal advice, it is for informational purposes only, and may not constitute the most up-to-date information. Readers should contact their attorney for advice on any particular legal matter.
  1. Do you meet the qualifications for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and what are the associated costs in Mississippi?
  2. Are there alternative options better suited to your situation?
  3. Lastly, familiarize yourself with specific details about Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Mississippi. We will further elaborate on this aspect below to ensure you have the necessary information to make an informed decision.

For those who prefer visual aids, utilize the Mississippi Chapter 7 Calculator below to estimate your qualifications and costs.

1) How Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Works in Mississippi

How Fast Do You Get Relief in A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Mississippi

A no-asset Chapter 7 case in Mississippi typically concludes within approximately 120 days, from initiation to completion. In such cases, individuals do not possess significant assets that surpass Mississippi's bankruptcy exemptions. Thus, for those without substantial assets, bankruptcy proceedings can be resolved relatively swiftly.

How Much Does It Cost To File Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Mississippi

Chapter 7 bankruptcy typically costs between $500 and $3000, with variations based on your location, such as city or state. For instance, filing in Southaven might cost around $1,170, while the fee could rise much higher in Jackson.

Moreover, there are circumstances where the filing cost can be lowered, such as through a filing fee waiver. For further information, explore the Mississippi filing fee waiver for comprehensive details.

How Do I Qualify For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Mississippi?

When assessing your eligibility for Chapter 7, it's crucial to consider the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Mississippi Income Limits. This evaluation determines if you qualify for a bankruptcy discharge, which means your debts will be forgiven. Passing the means test, which you can estimate below, indicates that Chapter 7 can address most of your unsecured debts. Unsecured debts, like medical bills, personal loans, certain old income tax debts, old utility bills, credit card debts, and most personal judgments, lack collateral.

What about secured debts in Chapter 7?

If you're aiming to eliminate secured debts like car loans and mortgages, Chapter 7 bankruptcy could be the solution. However, there's a catch: you'll need to surrender the asset to the creditor, who will then regard it as full payment for your outstanding debt.

IMPORTANT: Chapter 7 Qualification via Mississippi Means Test

Feel free to utilize the calculator below to determine your eligibility for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Mississippi. This tool, known as the Bankruptcy Means Test, calculates your average annual income based on your last six months of gross income. It then compares this figure to the median income of other households in Mississippi. If your median income falls below the Mississippi median income, you may qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge.

My Income Exceeded The Chapter 7 Means Test Allowable in Mississippi

If your income exceeds the median income in your state, you may need to delve into part 2 of the means test or consider alternative options. We encourage you to explore this helpful resource: passing the Chapter 7 means test when income exceeds the median.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Mississippi Income Limits

Starting November 1, 2023, if you're filing for bankruptcy in Mississippi, the income limitations based on household size are as follows:

# of PeopleAnnual Income
1$49,516
2$60,025
3$71,947
4$81,416
5$91,316
6$101,216
7$111,116
8$121,016
9$130,916
  • 10+: add $9,000 for each additional individual

Will I lose my belongings if I file Chapter 7 bankruptcy? Understand Mississippi bankruptcy exemptions

Bankruptcy exemptions help protect the equity in your property when you're going through a bankruptcy case. In Mississippi, the exemption for a homestead is $75,000 regardless of age or martial status. However, Mississippi also has some specific rules for their homestead bankruptcy exemption. If you've got a mobile home, you can exempt up to $30,000 only if you own the land it's sitting on.

There are also federal bankruptcy exemptions known as "11 U.S. Code §522." that are important to know about. Luckily, Mississippi is one of those states that lets you use the federal bankruptcy exemptions. If you want to learn exactly what they are, the National Consumer Law Center has a list of federal bankruptcy exemptions on their website.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Mississippi Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Speedy Discharge: Within approximately 120 days, you could attain freedom from debt and embark on a fresh financial journey.
  • Property Exemptions: Meeting the exemption threshold might enable you to retain a significant portion of your personal property when filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
  • Halting Debt Collection Lawsuits: Filing triggers an automatic stay by the court, halting all legal actions against you, including harassing calls and letters from debt collectors.
  • Dealing with Loan Deficiencies: Bankruptcy can alleviate the burden of loan deficiencies, particularly when you owe more on a loan than the collateral's value.

Cons

  • Income requirements for qualification: To be eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must meet specific income requirements.
  • Potential loss of home and belongings: If your assets exceed the exemption limit, there is a chance that you may have to part ways with some of your property.
  • Negative impact on credit report: Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can have a lasting effect on your credit report. It stays on record for a decade, making it challenging to secure future loans or favorable interest rates.
  • Non-dischargeable debt: It's important to note that not all debts may be discharged through Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Specific obligations, such as student loans and child support payments, are typically not eligible for discharge.

2) Alternatives to Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Mississippi

a) Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Mississippi

Even if your income surpasses the limit for Chapter 7 bankruptcy eligibility, it may be good to consider Chapter 13 over Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Chapter 13 in Mississippi offers an alternative avenue for debt relief. Through Chapter 13, you can restructure your debts into a more manageable monthly plan. This restructuring facilitates the retention of your home and vehicles, halts foreclosure proceedings, and prevents the repossession of your belongings. Additionally, it may enable reductions in unpaid child support, alimony, and car loan payments.

Can you afford Chapter 13 bankruptcy?

If you're contemplating Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you can utilize this calculator to gauge whether you can afford the monthly payment.

b) Debt Settlement/Relief

Another alternative to Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy is debt settlement. With this option, a debt settlement company negotiates a reduced amount on your total debt, providing potential savings in the long term. However, it's crucial to weigh its impact on your credit score and conduct thorough research to select a reputable and transparent debt settlement company.

c) Debt Management

Another avenue to consider is debt management. Unlike debt settlement, where the focus is on reducing the total debt owed, debt management programs aim to lower interest rates. Although these programs typically last 3 to 5 years and may be slightly more expensive than debt settlement, they can offer significant benefits. Not all creditors may be open to working with a debt management company, however.

If you're grappling with high-interest credit card debt, debt management could potentially slash interest rates by 10-20%. Over time, this reduction could lead to substantial savings of 30-50% on your current debt, facilitating a more efficient repayment process. It's crucial to carefully assess your financial situation and weigh the pros and cons of each option to determine the most suitable course of action.

d) Mississippi Debt Payoff Planning

Another alternative worth considering is debt payoff planning. While this strategy demands dedication and entails trimming expenses and allocating surplus income toward debt repayment, it offers tangible results. By selecting an appropriate debt payoff plan, you can make steady progress each month. Additionally, as you start eliminating debts, you can channel the freed-up funds towards paying off remaining balances more rapidly. This compounding effect accelerates the debt repayment process, enabling you to achieve financial freedom sooner.

3) Specific Mississippi Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Information:

Mississippi Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Credit Counseling and Debtor Education Courses

During the Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing process, you are required to undertake a couple of courses to obtain a bankruptcy discharge. These courses serve to enhance your understanding of your financial situation and provide insights into alternatives to bankruptcy. Following the filing of your case, you must complete another course known as the debtor education course, which equips you with the tools and knowledge necessary for better financial management in the future.

Approved by the United States Trustee's office, certain companies in Mississippi offer these bankruptcy courses. You can access a list of these approved companies on the UST website.

Mississippi Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Court Locations

It's important to remember the 341 meeting(s) of creditors, are a crucial step in the bankruptcy process. While many of these meetings have transitioned to phone or Zoom due to the pandemic, being aware of the nearest courthouse is vital in case an in-person appearance is required. To assist you, we'll furnish a list of court locations based on the bankruptcy districts in Mississippi.

Northern District

  • 911 Jackson Avenue, Oxford, MS 38655
  • 203 Gilmore Drive, Amory, MS 38821
  • 305 Main Street, Greenville, MS 38701
  • 911 Jackson Avenue East, Oxford, MS 38655

Southern

  • 501 E. Court Street, Suite 2.500, Jackson, MS 39201
  • 701 North Main Street, Suite 200, Hattiesburg, MS 39401
  • 2012 15th Street, Suite 403, Gulfport, MS 39501
  • 109 South Pearl Street, 2nd Floor, Natchez, MS 39120

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Trustees Mississippi

Here are the addresses of U.S. Bankruptcy Courts and a Superior Court in different cities across the state:

Northern District:

  1. Henry J. Applewhite, II - (662) 369-7783
  2. William L. Fava - (662) 536-1116
  3. Jeffrey A. Levingston - (662) 843-2791

Southern District:

  1. Derek A. Henderson - (601) 948-3167
  2. Kimberly R. Lentz - (228) 867-6050
  3. Eileen N. Shaffer - (601) 969-3006
  4. J. Stephen Smith - (601) 605-0722
DistrictNamePhone
NorthernHenry J. Applewhite, II(662) 369-7783
NorthernWilliam L. Fava(662) 536-1116
NorthernJeffrey A. Levingston(662) 843-2791
SouthernDerek A. Henderson(601) 948-3167
SouthernKimberly R. Lentz(228) 867-6050
SouthernEileen N. Shaffer(601) 969-3006
SouthernJ. Stephen Smith(601) 605-0722

Conclusion

After familiarizing yourself with Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Mississippi, you're likely better informed about the criteria and potential alternatives. However, if you seek a rapid assessment of your eligibility and potential costs, consider utilizing the Chapter 7 bankruptcy means test calculator provided below.

If you're interested in delving deeper into the Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing process, explore our comprehensive guide detailing every step involved.

Additionally, if you're considering ways to reduce attorney fees and are open to handling certain aspects yourself, we offer a resource on filing bankruptcy without legal representation. You can access the article by clicking the link provided: filing bankruptcy without an attorney.

More News Stories

April 6, 2024
Georgia Bankruptcy Means Test and Income Limit 2024

Just a quick heads up: We are all about providing information, not legal advice. We're not attorneys, but if you want to chat with a bankruptcy attorney in your city, they've got a free consultation waiting for you.

Read story
April 6, 2024
Colorado Bankruptcy Means Test and Income Limit 2024

Just a quick heads up: We are all about providing information, not legal advice. We're not attorneys, but if you want to chat with a bankruptcy attorney in your city, they've got a free consultation waiting for you.

Read story
April 6, 2024
Tennessee Bankruptcy Means Test and Income Limit 2024

Just a quick heads up: We are all about providing information, not legal advice. We're not attorneys, but if you want to chat with a bankruptcy attorney in your city, they've got a free consultation waiting for you.

Read story