Struggling financially? Is Chapter 7 relief out of reach? If so, Chapter 13 may be the next best thing. What is it about Chapter 13 that should make Illinois residents consider it?

A Chapter 13 filing, if approved, may not offer the immediate discharge of debt like a Chapter 7 does, but it does still offer debt relief to those who the court believes have money to pay back creditors. It may offer discharge of debt at the end of a repayment plan, and it offers a payment schedule that fits within one’s current budget. The benefits do not stop there.

A Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows a person to keep his or her property. This is significant, as it is not always the case with a Chapter 7 filing. A few other benefits include consumer and co-signer protections from creditor harassment and foreclosure prevention.

The biggest downfall to filing any sort of bankruptcy is the hit one’s credit score will take. Yes, this form of bankruptcy will remain on one’s credit report for up to 10 years, which could affect one’s ability to obtain credit and loans; however, it is necessary to look at the big picture. Without bankruptcy, one will have to pay back creditors according to their terms, regardless of whether those terms are affordable, Further, one’s credit score may still drop, and there will be no bankruptcy protections in place, meaning creditors can harass consumers and take their property. Which seems like the worse scenario?

If struggling financially, wanting debt relief is understandable. Wanting to find the best way to go about achieving it is also understandable. For some Illinois residents, Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be the absolute best option. Legal counsel can review one’s financial situation and help one pursue relief in the manner deemed most appropriate for one’s circumstances.