Jumpstart your dreams again

Credit card and Student Loan debt can keep you from living your best life. Let us wipe out your debts so you can move forward with your dreams. We’ll walk you through the bankruptcy process from beginning to end.

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The Basics of Bankruptcy

There is a lot of confusion around bankruptcy. While a consultation is the best way to gain an understanding of the best path forward, the information below is a good place to start.

What Is Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy is a legal process through which people who cannot repay debts to creditors may seek relief from some or all of their debts, which means that certain types of debt will be discharged (wiped out). It is your legal right to file bankruptcy if you are unable to pay your debts.

There are two types of bankruptcy, called “chapters”: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. The difference is based on your specific financial situation. The lawyers at Jumpstart will help determine the chapter that is best for you.

Why Jumpstart?

  1. Costs – Jumpstart charges a flat fee of $1,500 (including the $335 filing fee for the Bankruptcy Court). This is considerably less than most bankruptcy lawyers who charge $2,000 or more.
  2. Education – Jumpstart educates you on your rights in bankruptcy using plain language and walks you through the entire process. Most bankruptcy lawyers talk in Legalese and don’t take the time to explain bankruptcy in any meaningful way.
  3. Empowerment – Jumpstart empowers you to take control of your financial future so you can move forward with your dreams again.

Eliminate Credit Card Debt

In most cases, you can get rid of credit card debt in Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Most folks file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy to wipe out credit card debt. In most situations, your obligation to pay the balance will go away at the end of your bankruptcy case, when the court grants a “discharge”.

Eliminate Student Loan Debt

Student loans are difficult, but not impossible, to discharge in bankruptcy. To do so, you must show that payment of the debt “will impose an undue hardship on you and your dependents.” If you can successfully prove undue hardship, your student loan can be completely or partially canceled.

Stop Wage Garnishments

If your wages are being garnished, this means that a creditor has a judgment against you is diverting your wages to satisfy the judgment. If your wages are being garnished, or you fear they soon will be, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stop the garnishment in most cases. This happens because bankruptcy’s “automatic stay” prohibits most creditors from continuing collection actions during your bankruptcy case.

Stop Lawsuits

Many people choose to file for bankruptcy after being served with a lawsuit because an order called “automatic stay” prevents your creditors from continuing with their collection efforts, including lawsuits. Essentially, this stops creditors dead in their tracks.

Stop Evictions

A residential landlord in California must almost always use the court eviction process (called an “unlawful detainer” in California) to evict a tenant, the landlord cannot simply physically kick out of lock out a tenant – that is illegal. Filing bankruptcy will generally stop the court eviction process in California because the “automatic stay” stops the landlord from taking away your possession or control of the leased property.

Stop Foreclosures

Once you file bankruptcy, including an emergency petitio, the automatic stay goes into effect that prohibits your lender from going forward with the foreclosure sale. This means that bankruptcy can delay or stop the foreclosure process as long as the home has not been sold yet.

Will I Lose My Job?

Your employer may not fire you solely because you filed for bankruptcy, nor may your employer use bankruptcy as a reason to change other terms or conditions of your employment. For instance, your employer can’t reduce your salary, demote you, or take away responsibilities just because you filed bankruptcy.

If you’re fired shortly after your employer learns of your bankruptcy — and no other justifications exist — you might have a case against the employer for illegal discrimination.

What Do I Need To File Bankruptcy?

It’s helpful to gather the following documents, if applicable to you:

  • DRIVER’S LICENSE AND SOCIAL SECURITY CARD
  • INCOME – all pay stubs and any other source of income (i.e. pension, unemployment, social security, child support, etc.) for the sixmonths preceding the filing of your bankruptcy case. NOTE: you must include your spouse’s income even if he/she is not filing the bankruptcy. If you are a business, you will need to provide a profit/loss statement for the last six months.
  • FEDERAL AND STATE TAX RETURNS – Chapter 7 Clients: last two years of the most recent returns; Chapter 13 Clients: last 4 years of returns (5 years for chapter 13 clients who operate a business). NOTE: we need every page of the tax return.
  • BANK STATEMENTS –last three months of bank statements (six months if you operate a business)
  • BILLING STATEMENTS – most recent billing statements from creditors, including your most recent credit card statements, collection notices, medical bills, department store/gas cards and ALL lawsuit documents filed in the last two years, including wage garnishment notices, bank levies and liens (abstracts of judgment). NOTE: only provide one statement per account.
  • SECURED LOAN DOCUMENTS – most recent mortgage and vehicle loan statements with proof of insurance for each (the declaration page of your policy). We also need a copy of your vehicle purchase contract. If you are in a lease we need a copy of the lease.
  • CHILD SUPPORT/DISSOLUTION DOCUMENTS – If you are currently paying, or are supposed to be paying child support, provide a copy of the child support order. It should include the case number and the name of the person and the address of where the child support payments are to be sent.
  • 401(k) STATEMENTS – Retirement account statements and retirement loan statements.

After Bankruptcy

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy usually stays on your credit report for ten years from the date that your bankruptcy case was filed (not the date of discharge), while a Chapter 13 bankruptcy should drop off your report seven years from the date you filed your case. The impact of the bankruptcy on your credit rating will diminish over time, even while it is still on your credit report, as long as you work on rebuilding your credit. I’ve known folks who purchased homes only a few years after they filed for bankruptcy.

Rebuilding Credit
You can obtain a secured credit card after you receive your bankruptcy discharge to start rebuilding your credit . A secured credit card uses money deposited in a bank account as collateral for the credit card.

It is important to use no more than 20% of your available credit on your secured card (or any credit card). Thus, if you have a limit of $500, avoid carrying a balance of more than $100 on the card at any one time. The purpose of this card is to rebuild your credit, so responsible use is essential. If you are a couple, it is a good idea to have a separate card for each of you.

It is important to use no more than 20% of your available credit on your secured card (or any credit card). Thus, if you have a limit of $500, avoid carrying a balance of more than $100 on the card at any one time. The purpose of this card is to rebuild your credit, so responsible use is essential. If you are a couple, it is a good idea to have a separate card for each of you.

Contact Us

Learn more about bankruptcy and Jumpstart.

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How Jumpstart Works

Bankruptcy is your legal right but can be complicated. Jumpstart streamlines the process for you. Once Jumpstart prepares and files your bankruptcy papers, your debts are discharged (wiped out) after three to four months.

1 See if you qualify

Connect with a Jumpstart lawyer by calling or filling out the form on this page. We'll see if you qualify for bankruptcy.

2 Jumpstart Prepares Your Bankruptcy Papers

Jumpstart will review your documents (tax returns, pay stubs, etc.) and prepare your bankruptcy papers.

3 Attend Trustee Meeting

You will meet with your court-appointed bankruptcy trustee to discuss your case. Don’t worry — Jumpstart will make sure you are prepared!

YOUR DEBT IS WIPED OUT
about 2 months after the Trustee Meeting.

The Jumpstart Story

When we came out of school there were no good jobs available. We took part time work that didn’t pay enough so we used credit cards just to live. We had a hard time paying our student loans on time, if we were able to pay them at all.

No matter how much the economy improved, we still can’t move ahead. Our credit scores kept dropping lower. Sometimes it feels like we’ll carry this baggage for the rest of our lives.

This was not our fault and we did our best to deal with a bad situation. But now its time to move forward. We launched Jumpstart as an easy and affordable way to eliminate your debt.

Contact us today to learn more about your rights in bankruptcy.

See how Jumpstart helped Howard

Do you qualify for a Jumpstart?

Fill out our brief questionnaire to see if you qualify for bankruptcy. Your answers are strictly confidential.

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Why Jumpstart?

Low Cost

Traditional law firms charge fees as high as $2500 or more — Jumpstart’s fees start at $699 for Pro Se (where clients represent themselves) and $999 for full service.

Save Time

Self-filing bankruptcy services do not guide you through the process the way Jumpstart does. We save you the time of trying to figure everything out on your own.

Simplify Documents

We provide a summary of all the documents that you need, helping you to avoid any errors that might derail your case.

Decode Legal Language

Bankruptcy paperwork is full of complex legal jargon. We will explain everything you need to in plain English.

Eliminate. Protect. Recover.

Eliminate

  • Credit Card Bills
  • Medical Bills
  • Foreclosure Process
  • Wage Garnishment
  • Creditor Phone Calls
  • Lawsuits and Judgements

Protect

  • Your Home
  • Your Car
  • Your Wages
  • Peace of Mind

Recover

  • Lost Time
  • Sense of Purpose
  • Control of financial future
FIND OUT IF I QUALIFY

Jumpstart guided me the whole time and made things easier

I tried a free DIY online services but was frustrated by with the legalese and lack of guidance. Jumpstart guided me the whole time and made things easier. Plus Victor really cared about my situation and gave me the peace of mind I needed in a stressful situation.

SARAH H. Happy Jumpstarter

I couldn’t have asked for better results

The Jumpstart team was great at keeping me informed and answered all my questions from start to finish. I couldn’t have asked for better results.

ROBERT H. Happy Jumpstarter

I received my bankruptcy discharge within 4 months

I received my bankruptcy discharge within 4 months of contacting Jumpstart. I would recommend Jumpstart to anybody.

MICHELLE C. Happy Jumpstarter

What is Bankruptcy?

There are two types of bankruptcy, called “chapters”: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. The difference is based on your specific financial situation. The lawyers at Jumpstart will help determine the chapter that is best for you.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Chapter 7 can wipe out overwhelming medical bills, credit card debt, and personal loans. It will not eliminate back taxes, alimony, child support, or student loans. Chapter 7 can help by placing a hold on lawsuits, evictions, and foreclosure proceedings. While your credit report will take a hit at first, you can start improving your scores within months of filing.

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To qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy:

  • You must pass the means test, which looks at your income, assets, and expenses
  • You must not have completed Chapter 7 in the past eight years or Chapter 13 within the past six years
  • You must not have filed for bankruptcy in the previous 180 days

Chapter 7 is the best solution when:

  • You have few assets
  • Your debts total more than 40% of your annual income
  • Your debts include medical bills, credit card debt, and personal or payday loans
  • It would take more than five years to pay off your debt
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Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Chapter 13 bankruptcy restructures debts into a 3-5 year payment plan. This is best for those who have assets they want to keep like expensive jewelry and income properties or who have secured debts they want to keep such as a mortgage.

 

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To qualify for Chapter 13 bankruptcy:

  • You must have a regular income
  • You must be up-to-date on tax filings
  • You must not have filed for Chapter 13 in the past two years or Chapter 7 in the past four years
  • You must not have filed a bankruptcy petition in the previous 180 days

Chapter 13 is the best solution when:

  • You do not qualify for Chapter 7 because your income is too high.
  • You would lose certain property in Chapter 7
  • You are behind on your mortgage payments and want to keep your property
  • You filed a Chapter 7 in the past eight years.
  • You have a second mortgage on your home and the amount owed on the first mortgage is greater than the value of the property
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Victor Look Founder & Jumpstart Attorney

Meet the Founder

Our CEO, Attorney Victor Look, has first-hand experience struggling with crippling debt. His passion and years of experience fuel Jumpstart’s mission to empower others to take control of their financial future.

TALK TO VICTOR
Victor Look Founder & Jumpstart Attorney