How to File Bankruptcy in Georgia

In Georgia, you can apply for both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy as an individual consumer.

Bankruptcy in Georgia does not discharge some debts, including most back taxes, child support, alimony, most student loans, penalties or fines, and purchases greater than $550 made within 90 days of filing bankruptcy, or cash advances greater than $825 made within 70 days of filing bankruptcy.

To file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia and have your debts erased, you must pass a means test. Under the test, if you make less than the median income for a Georgia family, you may file under Chapter 7. For singles, the median income in Georgia is $39,171. $51,425 is the median income for a family of two, $58,885 for three persons, and $68,611 for four persons. If there are more than four members of your family, add $6,900 for each additional person.

Before you file Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia you will need to undergo credit counseling approved by the state, as well as complete any unfiled tax returns.

Once you meet the minimum requirements, your attorney will need to file a Statement of Financial Affairs with the Court. Your Statement of Financial Affairs will include a list of all your debts, both secured (such as mortgages or car loans) and unsecured (such as credit cards and medical bills). You will also need to include names and contact information for all your creditors and an itemized list of your personal property and assets.

If you own a home or property and file bankruptcy in Georgia, you will able to keep under the homestead exemption if you have less than $5,000 in equity in it.

Under Georgia law, you will also be able to keep your vehicle if you have less than $3,500 equity in it. If you have an auto loan, you will need to reaffirm it after filing bankruptcy.

Under Georgia bankruptcy law, you can also keep the following items valued up to $300 each, but not great than $5,000 in total value: furniture, appliances, clothing, animals, books, musical, instruments, and crops. You may also keep jewelry valued up to $500.  
You are also entitled to keep your veterans’, Social Security, disability, public assistance, unemployment compensation, worker’s compensation benefits, and alimony. You may also keep the proceeds of certain legal settlements, such as those arising from personal injuries or the wrongful death of a person on whom you were dependent.

If you have extra income that would allow you to repay your debts, you may want to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Under Georgia Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will establish a payment plan with the approval of the court.