FAQ

Can I travel to another country?

Yes. All you need to do is apply to your bankruptcy trustee for consent to go. You’ll get it, but there is a one-page form you have to fill in simply to inform the trustee of how long you will be traveling, etc. This rule is really only there so high flyers don’t skip the country. In some cases the trustee will call for your passport, but don’t fret about it because you can ask for it back when you want to take a trip. Call us if you wish to know more about travel on 1300 795 575.

Can I keep my house?

In many cases the answer is yes! In fact, in many cases these days we can help you keep your home. At Bankruptcy Experts we are experts at guiding people keep their houses. It’s potentially very complicated, so if you are concerned about losing your house call us on 1300 795 575 and we will walk you through your alternatives.

The prospect of losing the family house is probably the most typical deterrent to people filing for bankruptcy. We speak with people each day who have fought for many years under significant financial strain so they don’t lose their home.

So how is it possible to become bankrupt and keep your house? Simple, really; it’s a matter of equity. Let’s put it like this, if you have a home that’s worth $350,000 and you owe the bank $350,000 you in reality have no equity in the house, right? The trustee will only sell off your house if there is sufficient equity in the home if sold to repay some of your debts. So in this particular situation, the trustee will then offer you some choices, one of which is to simply to continue paying the mortgage and live in the house while you are bankrupt.

So how can I find out the market value of my house? A quick way is to go onto realestate.com. au and look at the sold houses tab in the Herveybay area and it will show you all the recent sales in your neighborhood. Another option, if you are not sure or are very worried, is to have a registered valuer do a valuation on your home, not a real estate agent (unless they are registered valuers, naturally). Be advised this will cost you somewhere between $300-700. Just one more aspect of house prices. If the trustee needs to sell your house they do this reasonably quickly. It’s not a 6-month slick promotional campaign and instead it’s typically by auction and they just meet the market on the day and that’s it. So when planning on the value remember it’s a sell now price, not when the market improves.

Once you have ascertained the resale value of your house the next thing to review is ownership.

Generally most home loans are between 2 people as joint tenants who both contribute to the mortgage. If only one party is going bankrupt then the equity is worked out like this.

Say your house is worth $400,000 and the current price is $350,000. Then the balance of equity in the home is $50,000, right? Half of that total equity is automatically assigned to the party not going bankrupt, leaving $25,000 for the bankrupt. Out of that $25,000 the bankrupt party has to pay for all of the selling costs including advertising and marketing etc., which, depending upon where you live, can cost anywhere between $12,000-20,000. In this particular case say the selling fees are going to be $15,000 then the remaining left over after the sale is $10,000. So in this case the trustee will give the non-bankrupt party a number of options. One of which is typical is for the bank to say, “Pay us the $10,000 and we won’t sell the home and you will have it eliminated as an asset from the bankrupt’s estate.” Or, in other words, cut a deal to pay the $10,000 and you can keep the house.

Just a side note: the credit union who has given you the property loan will require the repayments to be maintained obviously. No matter what the trustee decides, if you don’t pay the credit union the home loan they will eventually ask you to leave. So, in plain english, keeping your home naturally implies keeping the home loan as well.

There are many more options with your home, and we have just described one option of potentially 20 alternatives you can choose from, when it pertains to your house. We understand you will want to get this correct. Gambling with the family home can possibly be a dreadful business. If you intend to get the right advice or you just need to talk to someone phone us on 1300 795 575.

When would my travel be hampered?

Your international travel would be limited by the trustee as a result of legal action. For example, if your bankruptcy is a part of a criminal investigation or fraudulent activities, it’s possible the trustee will restrict your travel.

What happens to my credit ranking?

Bankruptcy lasts 3 years and will sit on your credit record for that time. Nevertheless, just like any default it will be visible on your credit report for 7 years. You can have it eliminated if you get your bankruptcy annulled.

Will I ever have the ability to borrow money again once I’m bankrupt?

Bankruptcy lasts 3 years, and in that time you will not get a loan. After the 3 years is elapsed you will be able to get loans; you just won’t get the most ideal rate. Your credit file will be wiped clean 4 years after you have been discharged as a bankrupt then you will have an ideal credit history again and you will get the best deal on loans.

Will I lose my car if I go bankrupt?

Normally no. Bankrupts rarely lose their cars because they’ve gone bankrupt. Of course, this is conditional and we can let you know if yours is safe. Contact Bankruptcy Experts Herveybay on 1300 795 575.

There is a threshold or amount of wholesale value your car could be worth while you are bankrupt, which is $7,350. You will find all sorts of erroneous information about this online, but here are the facts. That $7,350 represents not the total value; it represents equity. So, simply put, if you have a car worth $35,000 you are paying off or leasing and the amount you could sell it for is $30,000 then you can keep your car because its equity is only $5,000. The company that gave you the money for the car will be pleased for you to keep the car even though you are bankrupt provided that you continue the payments.

What if I’m behind on my car payments and I go bankrupt; will they reposess my car?

Get some advice on this one. If you need some advice today just call 1300 795 575. Basically, you will get about 2 to 3 payments grace when it comes to car loans. The bottom line is simple: whether you are bankrupt or otherwise, if you miss 3 or more monthly payments on your loan they will repossess the car. Don’t assume because you are going bankrupt you are automatically going to lose your car because in many cases we help people keep them.

When are the creditors informed of my bankruptcy?

The creditors, or the people you owe money to, are informed in writing at about the same time you receive your bankruptcy file number.

Will anyone visit my home?

No. The bankruptcy procedure is ultimately a paperwork exercise. The only thing that actually occurs is you will either be sent a letter by snail mail or emailed a letter notifying you that you are bankrupt. At Bankruptcy Experts Herveybay we make sure that this entire procedure is that simple, so if you have questions about this phone 1300 795 575.

Can I have my bankruptcy annulled?

Yes. This process will take about 2 weeks and will completely get rid of the bankruptcy from your credit file. There are provisions within the Bankruptcy Act that allow a bankrupt individual to have their bankruptcy annulled through a Section 73 proposal.

The repercussions of creditor’s claims can often result in bankruptcy, regardless of regardless if it was the individual’s choice to enter bankruptcy, or if it was filed by a creditor. However, bankruptcy is far from the end of the world for the person who undergoes bankruptcy.

We have been guiding people in the Herveybay area for years so phone us today on 1300 795 575 to get some guidance on this matter. We explore the most suitable possible strategy for you to get back up and running, eradicating residual effects and obstacles of past financial situations to give you the best possible result. Having experience and skills specialising in Section 73 proposals, we can combine this with our proven approaches and tactics to bring you through bankruptcy unscathed, ready to start over.

Can I get my bankruptcy annulled?

First of all, having your bankruptcy annulled is generally reversing it 100 %. So if you are imagining you would like to have your bankruptcy annulled there are a few things you have to know.

Firstly, how does the annulment work? An easy way to think of it it is let’s say someone owes you $50,000 and they haven’t paid you one dollar back for years. Then to make things worse you learn that they have gone bankrupt. You would kiss that cash goodbye, right? Many years pass and they approach you with an offer to pay you $5,000 that their friend is giving to them to settle your debt with them. Undoubtedly you are happy to take it, because it is better than a kick in the teeth. The only condition they ask for in return is that you agree to have the bankruptcy removed from their credit history, and if you don’t agree to do that then there will be no $5,000. Obviously you don’t care about their record; you are just happy they are offering you some cash after all these years.

In bankruptcy terms this procedure is usually described as a Section 73 proposal, and it’s an approach where “everybody wins.”.

Basically the trustee meets your creditors, proposes your offer, which is dramatically less than the original amount owed, on the condition they clear your credit history clean.

This procedure takes a few weeks. The proposal can be done at any time in the 3 years you are bankrupt. However, you have to consider the timing of your proposal. Because it does cost money to do this, you need to ensure the odds are on your side. For example, if you are repaying money to the trustee each week because you earn over the threshold amount, then your creditors will know they are going to receive a certain amount from you over the 3 years regardless so it better be more than that will add up to.

If you have only been bankrupt 3 weeks it will be harder to get an annulment because they might get some funds from you over the 3 years if you earn over the threshold sum of money.

If you want assistance to put a section 73 proposal to your trustee or just desire more details about the timing of when to put an offer forward, simply give us a call on 1300 795 575.

Can I file for bankruptcy if I’m currently in a Debt Agreement or Personal Insolvency Agreement or in a Consolidation Loan Contract?

Yes! We can help you cancel all of these agreements. With Debt Agreements and Personal Insolvency Agreements we will need to have you discharged from them first before you declare bankruptcy, but it’s not a problem. If you are tied into one of these and simply can’t climb on top give us ring at 1300 795 575.

What debts won’t bankruptcy remove?

There are very few debts that bankruptcy won’t 100 % wipe out, like Centrelink, child support, HECS and a court-imposed fine (speeding fines, etc.) and, finally, money owed to an insurance company as a result of a car accident in an uninsured car that you were driving.

Other than that, it will eliminate debts like your credit cards, store cards, GST and tax, unsecured personal loans, etc. Actually, there are a lot of things to list so if you have a particular debt you are bothered with just call for a free consultation 1300 795 575.

Is there a limit to the amount of debt I can go bankrupt for?

You can’t file for bankruptcy for an amount less than $5,000; however, there is no limit beyond that. If you owe a few million dollars, that’s handled no differently than $20,000.

What is the difference between a secured and unsecured debt?

An unsecured creditor is a creditor who does not have a security the chattels/assets/property acquired with the credit afforded to you. Such debts include credit card debts.

A secured creditor has a hold over the chattels/assets/property until the debt is paid completely. If a debtor defaults on a secured liability, the creditor has the right to repossess and sell the chattels/assets/property to pay down the debt.

How can I ensure that you will be successful in making me bankrupt?

We have helped thousands of people declare bankruptcy for many years and we have never had anyone’s application rejected. That’s why we offer a 100 % money back guarantee.

What if I’m not completely sure who I owe money to?

There is a basic technique we use here, and all you need to do is get a copy of your credit history as it will have your credit history on there. Companies like www.veda.com.au will have the ability to get you a copy for a small fee.

I’ve had a car accident. Will the debt be covered in bankruptcy?

Car accidents may be complicated, so to keep it simple call us on 1300 795 575 to get the right advice on your situation. However, as a general rule, if you were driving a motor vehicle that was not insured then the expense of the repairs is not wiped out with bankruptcy. Having said that, it depends who admitted liability or who was at fault. If you go to court and the court validates you were not at fault then you should be all right.

Can I have business debts removed with my bankruptcy also?

Yes! We can help you do this, although it’s possible there are implications and plenty of regulations around this procedure, so call us and we will help you through the procedure on 1300 795 575. Bankruptcy Experts Herveybay are experts at assisting businesses get back on their feet.

Can I pay out my bankruptcy debt and have it annulled?

Yes. There is a procedure to follow, but if you win lotto or inherit some cash you can use it to get your slate wiped clean. There is a way of doing this properly; just phone us first.

Suppose someone is bankrupting me; is there anything I should do?

Generally, if you owe money to someone they can get a court order and bankrupt you. They have to follow a process, but it is feasible. What you need to avoid at all costs if possible is another person bankrupting you, as it’s always best to voluntarily file for bankruptcy. Unless you enjoy court cases and harassing phone calls, of course.

What if my company has received a Demand or Wind-Up notice; can I still go bankrupt?

Yes. However, this is a challenging process and we suggest you get some professional advice; if its handled incorrectly, it could be disastrous. For a free consultation phone Bankruptcy Experts Herveybay 1300 795 575.

Do I have to contact my creditors?

No, we do that for you. In fact, we serve as an intermediary or a midway point between you and your creditors. So essentially you are not obliged to advise them of your bankruptcy; we take care of that for you.

How long does bankruptcy last?

Three Years.

How long does it take to declare bankruptcy?

Usually, it takes about 2 weeks.

What if someone else signed for a loan (joint loan or guarantor) and I go bankrupt; will they still be liable for the debt?

Yes. Typically a lender will pursue the other person who signed the loan documents with you for the full amount of the outstanding debt owing on the loan.

What happens to a debt I forgot about at the time of becoming bankrupt?

Don’t panic! If you overlooked a debt and remembered it later, just call your trustee with the name of the creditor, address, date the debt was incurred, amount of debt and any account or reference number/s supplied by the creditor. Your trustee will add the creditor to your bankruptcy paperwork and send a notification to the creditor.

Do I have to go to court if I go bankrupt?

No. We handle the entire process for you.

What if I have gambled a bit of my income and I go bankrupt; will I get in strife?

Ordinarily this is not a problem, so if you are a gambler, don’t worry. What the trustee doesn’t like is inconsistency here. In other words, you have never taken a chance in your life and all of a sudden you lost $50,000 on the horses, then you might have some explaining to do, of course, because it just doesn’t add up.

Can my bankruptcy be completed the phone?

Yes. We appreciate you are busy. If you have a phone we can help you; simply call us on 1300 795 575.

What if I’m living offshore; can I still file for bankruptcy?

Yes. This is attainable. It requires some emails back and forth but it can be accomplished.

Can I include my foreign debts in my bankruptcy?

Yes. If an individual originally residing in another country is now residing in Australia files for bankruptcy and they have a debt incurred in that foreign country, you simply list that debt on the paperwork.

In many cases the creditor overseas will erase the debt. It is possible and legal for them, however, to reject your application, and if you revisit that country you may be subject to their bankruptcy laws.

How will the trustee know what assets I have?

There are a few ways the trustee can determine, and the best and quickest way is for you to inform them when we do the paperwork. There is also a government website which has major assets listed also. You have to get some advice about assets; be careful.

Can I keep an inheritance if I declare bankruptcy?

This is complicated and you will require the correct advice, so if you need more information about inheritances phone us on 1300 795 575.

Will I lose my Pension or Workers Compensation payments if I file for bankruptcy?

No. The income thresholds are the same for everyone so regardless of how you earn your income you have to earn about $50,000 per year before your income will be impacted by bankruptcy.

Will I be able to keep my tax returns once I’m bankrupt?

Yes, if you owe the Australian Tax Office money. Put simply, if none of your debts is tax debt, then no, the Australian Tax Office will keep the money you owe them.

No, if you don’t owe the ATO money. Your income tax return is deemed take-home pay, so if you are under the threshold amount you can earn while bankrupt then you will get your whole income tax return back.

What about child support ?

If you need to pay child support, this amount will be deducted from your net income, so what you have the ability to keep after you pay your tax and then child support is considered net income. That is why in the world of bankruptcy net income amounts are always quoted.

Can I buy shares and make investments while I’m bankrupt?

Yes, you are allowed even while you are bankrupt, but the trustee will get them off you, as they are considered an asset.

What assets can I keep if I go bankrupt?

You can keep practically everything except big things like houses, cars, shares and inheritances. Even things like houses and cars may be able to be spared. Just give us a call before you make any rash decisions on 1300 795 575 for Bankruptcy Experts Herveybay.