At Arturo R Alfonso, PA, we understand that facing financial challenges and considering bankruptcy in Florida can be overwhelming. This guide walks you through the steps to declare bankruptcy, ensuring you have the information and support you need to make informed decisions.

Understanding Bankruptcy In Florida

Bankruptcy in Florida is a legal process for individuals or businesses that cannot pay debts to seek relief. There are various types of bankruptcy, primarily Chapter 7 and Chapter 13, each serving distinct purposes. Understanding these types is important for selecting the one that best suits your situation:

1. Chapter Bankruptcy (Liquidation)

  • Purpose: To provide a fresh start by discharging most unsecured debts.
  • Process: A trustee is appointed to sell the debtor’s non-exempt assets to pay off creditors. The remaining eligible debts are then discharged.
  • Eligibility: Means test qualification is required; individuals and businesses can file.

2. Chapter Bankruptcy (Wage Earner’s Plan)

  • Purpose: To allow individuals with regular income to develop a plan to repay all or part of their debts over three to five years.
  • Process: Debtors propose a repayment plan to pay creditors in installments. The bankruptcy court must approve the plan.
  • Eligibility: Available to individuals with unsecured debts of less than $419,275 and secured debts of less than $1,257,850 (as of 2021).

3. Chapter Bankruptcy (Reorganization)

  • Purpose: To allow businesses to continue operating while restructuring their debts and assets.
  • Process: A bankruptcy attorney in Florida proposes a reorganization plan to keep the business alive and pay creditors over time. The court must confirm the plan.
  • Eligibility: Primarily used by businesses, but individuals with substantial debts and assets can also file.

4. Chapter Bankruptcy (Family Farmer or Fisherman)

  • Purpose: To provide debt relief to family farmers and fishermen.
  • Process: Similar to Chapter 13, allowing for the reorganization and repayment of debts over three to five years.
  • Eligibility: Available to family farmers and fishermen with regular annual income and certain debt limits.

5. Chapter Bankruptcy (Cross-Border Cases)

  • Purpose: To provide a mechanism for dealing with insolvency cases involving debtors, assets, creditors, and other parties in more than one country.
  • Process: Focuses on cooperation between U.S. courts and foreign courts to administer international bankruptcy cases.
  • Eligibility: Used in cases involving foreign debtors with assets or affairs in multiple countries.

6. Chapter Bankruptcy (Municipalities)

  • Purpose: To provide reorganization relief for municipalities, including cities, towns, villages, counties, and school districts.
  • Process: Allows municipalities to restructure their debts without liquidating assets.
  • Eligibility: Only available to municipalities.

Each type of bankruptcy serves a different purpose and is tailored to specific financial situations, whether for individuals, businesses, farmers, fishermen, municipalities, or international cases. 

If considering bankruptcy, it’s essential to have a lawyer advice for bankruptcy to understand which type is most appropriate for your situation and to navigate the complex legal process.

Steps To Declare Bankruptcy

  • Evaluate Your Financial Situation: Assess your debts, assets, and income to determine if bankruptcy is the right solution for you. Consider consulting a bankruptcy attorney in Florida for professional guidance.
  • Credit Counseling: Before filing for bankruptcy, complete a credit counseling course from an approved agency. This course provides insights into managing finances and exploring alternatives to bankruptcy.
  • Prepare Necessary Documentation: Gather all relevant financial documents, including income statements, debt records, and a list of assets and liabilities. Accurate documentation is crucial for the bankruptcy process.
  • File the Petition: Filing a bankruptcy petition with the Florida bankruptcy court officially begins the process. The petition has detailed information about your financial situation and the type of bankruptcy you’re filing for.
  • Automatic Stay: After the petition is filed, a stay goes into effect automatically, halting most collection activities, such as lawsuits, wage garnishments, and creditor calls. This provides temporary relief while the bankruptcy process unfolds.
  • Meeting of Creditors: Approximately 20-40 days after filing, you must attend a meeting of creditors, also known as the 341 meeting. During this time, creditors and the bankruptcy trustee can resolve their queries about your financial situation and bankruptcy forms.

Why Do You Need a Bankruptcy Attorney In Florida?

Filing for bankruptcy involves intricate legal procedures and significant paperwork. An experienced bankruptcy attorney in Florida can provide the necessary guidance to navigate these complexities. At Arturo R Alfonso PA, we pride ourselves on offering expert lawyer advice for bankruptcy, ensuring our clients are knowledgeable and confident throughout the process.

By choosing professional assistance, you can avoid common pitfalls, ensure all paperwork is correctly filed, and maximize the benefits of declaring bankruptcy. Our team at Arturo R Alfonso PA is here to help you every step of the way, providing support tailored to your unique situation.

Lawyer Advice For Bankruptcy

Receiving professional lawyer advice for bankruptcy can make a difference in the outcome of your case. At Arturo R Alfonso, PA, our experienced attorneys provide guidance to help you navigate the complex bankruptcy process in Florida.

Key Tips From Our Bankruptcy Attorney In Florida:

  • Be Honest and Transparent: It is crucial to be completely honest about your financial situation when filing for bankruptcy. Disclose all assets, debts, and income to avoid any legal complications.
  • Keep Detailed Records: Store thorough records of all financial transactions, including bank statements, pay stubs, and debt correspondence. This documentation will be essential during the bankruptcy proceedings.
  • Understand Exemptions: Florida has specific exemptions that allow you to keep certain assets, such as your home or vehicle, during bankruptcy. A bankruptcy attorney in Florida can help you understand which exemptions apply to your case.
  • Avoid New Debt: Do not incur new debt before filing for bankruptcy, as the court can view this negatively and may complicate your case.
  • Stay Informed: Knowing the latest bankruptcy process and any changes in laws or regulations that may affect your case is essential. Your attorney will also provide valuable updates and advice throughout the process.

Benefits Of Professional Guidance

Expert Advocacy:

  • Hiring a bankruptcy attorney in Florida ensures you have an advocate who understands the intricacies of bankruptcy law.
  • At Arturo R Alfonso PA, we provide comprehensive support from initial consultation to final discharge.

Thorough Preparation:

  • Ensures all paperwork and procedures are handled correctly.
  • Helps avoid common pitfalls and maximize the benefits of declaring bankruptcy.

Peace Of Mind:

  • Our team will help you achieve the best possible outcome.
  • Provides reassurance and confidence during this challenging time.

Successful Navigation:

  • With professional advice and thorough preparation, you can navigate bankruptcy successfully.
  • Start rebuilding your financial future with confidence and support.


Navigating bankruptcy in Florida requires careful planning and professional advice. At Arturo R Alfonso PA, we are committed to guiding you through each step of the process. For personalized lawyer advice for bankruptcy and expert support, contact us today for a consultation. By leveraging our expertise, you can take control of your financial situation and find the relief you need.