Effective, Compassionate Representation Standing Between You & Your Creditors Over 30 Years of Experience Experienced, Supportive Staff

Effective, Compassionate Representation

Standing Between You & Your Creditors

Over 30 Years of Experience

Experienced, Supportive Staff

Lee Anne Graybeal Follow us on
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Office Location

Address: 5 Webhannet Place,
Suite 4, Kennebunk, ME 04043
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Toll Free Phone: 888-985-4644
Phone: 207-985-4644
Fax: 207-985-4495

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Lee is sincere, honest, compassionate in her work. I found her to be attentive to my story when I met with her each time, she maintained good eye contact, & comfortable to be around. She was experienced in her skills & knowledgeable in her craft. She took on my case because I think she thought it was the right thing to do & believed in the process of the law. I trusted her & she believed in me, together we had faith in the process, facts to prove my case of undue hardship in along time educational student loan struggle! All others I turned to were unable to help my case. Lee had faith in herself & the skills to take my case on & she won my dignity & my case at at the same time. I will forever be grateful that someone took the chance & the challenge to make it right!

- Joyce
Student Loan Discharge Client

Frequently Asked Questions

The paragraphs below discuss some commonly asked questions about bankruptcy. All of your questions require answers specific to your circumstances; answers which can only be arrived at in consultation with an experienced attorney. These thumbnail discussions are provided to give you a general idea of what to expect when considering some of the issues confronting people with debt pressures. The information contained in this Web site is directed at residents of the State of Maine. In other jurisdictions, your rights may be different. The information on this Web site does not constitute, nor should it be considered as, legal advice. If you are contemplating a bankruptcy or other debt resolution process, or any other matter which may affect your legal rights, you should consult with an attorney about your individual circumstances. 

 

Q. I have heard that I can no longer file bankruptcy to discharge credit cards or medical expenses.  Is this true?

A.  No.  The Bankruptcy Code was changed in October 2005, and there are new restrictions and limitations, but generally most of your rights remain unchanged.  You must now undergo a credit counseling session prior to filing, but we will guide you through the process, and the certificate can be obtained online.  If your income exceeds the median income for Maine, you may have to proceed in Chapter 13 instead of Chapter 7, but this is not true in most cases.  Don't be intimidated by the changes; that's what I am here for.  I will handle those for you.  Remember, most of your rights in bankruptcy remain the same.

 

Q. Can I keep my house and car in a bankruptcy?

A. You can keep your house and car, and any other asset subject to a security interest like a mortgage or car loan, provided that: 
In the case of a house, you can afford to make the regular monthly payments; there is not significantly more equity in the house than would be consumed through payment of all liens and your bankruptcy exemption; and you are able to cure any default on the mortgage by making payments to a trustee over a period of up to 5 years.

B. In the case of a car loan, you can keep your car if you are current on your payments and can afford to keep making them; or you can pay the amount owed over a period of up to 5 years.

If you decide you cannot afford your house or car, you can give them up and you will be discharged from the balance due on the loan.  This is especially important if you have a high payment on a car loan, such as when you roll in the amount due from another loan.

 

Q. Can I keep one of my credit cards?

A. You must list every creditor. That means you cannot leave a credit card or any other debt out of the bankruptcy. If there is a credit card on which you owe nothing, you do not have to list it, as that is not a debt. However, that credit card still may be cancelled (and probably will be) because of the bankruptcy, or for any other reason the issuer deems relevant.

 

Q. How long will a bankruptcy stay on my credit history?

A. A Chapter 7 will stay on credit reports for up to 10 years. A Chapter 13 can stay on for up to 7 years. A bankruptcy won't immediately wipe out negative credit, but it gives you the chance to start over, and build a new credit history out from under the crushing weight of overwhelming debt.

 

Q. Are there debts I can't get rid of?

A. Yes, there are certain types of debts which are "non-dischargeable", meaning that they will survive a bankruptcy. The most common of those debts are: child or spousal support; criminal fines and penalties; certain recent income tax obligations; "trust fund" taxes (sales or withholding tax you collected and did not pay over); student loans; and any debt incurred through fraud. This last category can include debts you did not intend to repay, and charges for luxury goods and services aggregating $550.00 for one creditor, incurred within 90 days, or cash advances totaling $825.00, incurred within 70 days before filing a bankruptcy petition. There are other types of non-dischargeable debts, which can be discussed in consultation.

 

Q.Will someone come to my house and go through my belongings?

A. Generally, no. The bankruptcy process relies upon the honesty of the participants, and you provide information to the court under the penalty of perjury. The biggest mistake you can make in a bankruptcy is to conceal assets or provide false information. As long as you are truthful, it is a process that you can go through with dignity.

 

Q. How does bankruptcy work?

A. There are 2 types of bankruptcy most commonly used by individuals: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. In both types of cases, you file documents with the court and attend a meeting with a trustee. In a Chapter 13 you make payments over time to the trustee to bring your mortgage current, pay off your car, and to pay part of your other debts. In a Chapter 7, you don't make payments in the bankruptcy; you just pay your living expenses as usual, but stop paying dischargeable debts. Provided that you don't have non-exempt assets that the trustee can sell to pay your creditors, your Chapter 7 case will be finished in about 90 days. A Chapter 13 case will last as long as your payments last, which can be up to five years. You decide which chapter to file based upon your budget, your assets, and your objectives.