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You may be considering to file a bankruptcy in Louisiana and learning more about Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Pursuing the right bankruptcy is step because you will agree to a Chapter 13 bankruptcy repayment arrangement in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy that could take you the better part of three or five years or you will pursue a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. During a 12-month period which ends June 30th, 2019, there were 4,110 Chapter 7 filings in Louisiana and 9112 Chapter 13 filings in Louisiana.

Before you make up your mind regarding Chapter 13, it is advisable to allow Ascend to run you through an array of debt relief alternatives. Here, we will look at Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Louisiana.

Some of the Aspects we will study include:

  • Chapter 13 vs. Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Louisiana
  • Louisiana Chapter 13 Means Test
  • Chapter 13 Plan Payments in Louisiana
  • Louisiana Bankruptcy Exemptions 
  • Where are the Louisiana Bankruptcy Courts Situated?
  • Who are the Louisiana bankruptcy Trustees?
  • Are there alternatives to filing bankruptcy?

Chapter 13 vs. Chapter 7

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy can also be termed as ‘liquidation bankruptcy’ or ‘straightforward bankruptcy’ as there is no repayment arrangement. Still, your property can be auctioned to settle unsecured debts in case you have massive equity in the properties that are above the stipulated bankruptcy exemptions. With a bankruptcy exemption, a specific part of the investment in the property is protected.

A Louisiana Chapter 13 bankruptcy is basically a repayment arrangement where a part of your unsecured debts is repaid over three to five-year duration. By opting for Chapter 13, you will retain your assets and be free of debts that a Chapter 7 can’t discharge.

Nevertheless, in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you must have a stable stream of income to be eligible for debt forgiveness or bankruptcy discharge. During the period of the bankruptcy arrangement, you will be under the dominion of the bankruptcy court; therefore, you won’t be able to sell the property or incur more debts without the court’s permission.

Now, lets us delve a little deeper into Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Louisiana.

Louisiana Chapter 13 Means Test

The bankruptcy Means Test compares your earnings to other household’s income in Louisiana. In case your median income is lower than the state’s average earnings figure, then you are eligible for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge.

And in the event you earn more than the average income in Louisiana, Chapter 13 will be more recommendable. Now, in some cases, some debtors can be eligible for Chapter 7 irrespective of the fact that their earnings are higher than the average income amount for their family size.

Some specific living expenses are subtracted from gross earnings to establish disposable income. In case the disposable income surpasses a given figure, then you are not eligible for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge. The Means Test data changes from time to time. So you must confirm that the data you utilize to calculate the Means Test is the most recent figures. At the moment, data used in Louisiana bankruptcy cases applies to bankruptcy cases filed on or after May 1, 2020.   The Louisiana average income factors in the people in your household.

# of PeopleAnnual Income
1$45,634
2$55,410
3$63,039
4$82,282
5$91,282
6$100,282
7$109,282
8$118,282
9$127,282

Louisiana Bankruptcy Calculator

In Louisiana, Chapter 13 payment arrangements are calculated with some reasons in mind. Such factors include your disposable earnings, debts, assets, and most recent financial records and they can influence the amount in your Chapter 13 payment plan.

With a good Chapter 13 plan, you can lower auto payments, catch up mortgage amounts, resolve tax debts, and even settle back alimony and child support payments (domestic support arrears.)

It can be challenging to calculate a Chapter 13 payment plan, and this is where Ascend comes in. We created a Chapter 13 calculator to approximate your Chapter 13 payment schedule. It is also possible to utilize the longer type of our Chapter 13 calculator to get a more accurate estimate of Chapter 13 payments.

Louisiana Bankruptcy Exemptions

Under bankruptcy exemptions, debtors can retain their assets even as they file for bankruptcy. These exemptions safeguard net equity (the worth of property after subtracting liens) in assets from creditors and the courts. In some states, debtors can opt between state and federal bankruptcy exemptions, but in Louisiana, they can only use state bankruptcy exemptions. Nevertheless, there exist two types of Louisiana bankruptcy exemptions to select from in the Chapter 13 process.

It is upon you to select one or the other. To be able to establish which group of exemptions can best safeguard your assets in bankruptcy cases, it is advisable to undertake a thorough analysis. You can find Louisiana’s bankruptcy exemptions in Louisiana’s law search. For example you can find the Louisiana homestead exemption through that search.

Remember that in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, your payment arrangement can be influenced by your net equity in assets. So it means that utilizing the right bankruptcy exemptions can decrease your Louisiana Chapter 13 payment amount.

Where are Louisiana Bankruptcy Courts Situated?

Louisiana is has three bankruptcy districts. Here are the Bankruptcy Districts for Louisiana.

  • Central District of Louisiana – (Divisions – Ascension, East Baton Rouge, West Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, West Feliciana, Iberville, Livingston, Pointe Coupee, and St. Helena.)
  • Eastern District of Louisiana – (Divisions – Assumption, Jefferson, Lafourche, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. James, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, Terrebonne, and Washington.)
  • Western District of Louisiana – (Divisions – Alexandria: Avoyelles, Catahoula, Concordia, Grant, LaSalle, Natchitoches, Rapides, & Winn. Lafayette: St. Martin, Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Mary, St. Landry, & Vermilion. Lake Charles: Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Jefferson Davis, & Vernon. Monroe: Caldwell, East Carroll, Franklin, Jackson, Lincoln, Madison, Morehouse, Ouachita, Richland, Tensas, Union, & West Carroll. Shreveport: Bienville, Bossier, Caddo, Claiborne, DeSoto, Red River, Sabine, & Webster )

In every district, there might have several divisions, and they are shown next to the districts listed above. You’ll find out that a division deals with several counties in its jurisdiction.  When filing for Chapter 13, your county of residence will determine the division and district where your case will be heard.

Who are the Louisiana Bankruptcy Trustees?

In Louisiana, you’ll find bankruptcy trustees, and every one of them deals with cases depending with division and district. The United States Trustees website has the Chapter 7 trustees in Louisiana and the Chapter 13 trustees in Louisiana.

Your bankruptcy case will be administered by a trustee who will review your bankruptcy arrangement and forms. You can see the trustee information below.

Chapter 7 Trustees in Louisiana

DistrictNamePhone
EasternDavid V. Adler(504) 834-5465
EasternWilbur J. Babin, Jr.(504) 837-1230
EasternBarbara N. Rivera-Fulton(504) 373-5592
MiddleSamera L. Abide(225) 923-1404
MiddleDwayne M. Murray(225) 925-1110
MiddleMartin A. Schott(225) 928-9292
WesternElizabeth G. Andrus(337) 981-3858
WesternTed B. Brunson(318) 352-9311
WesternJohn C. Conine(318) 354-8413
WesternJohn W. Luster(318) 352-3602
WesternLucy Sikes(337) 366-0214
WesternMark K. Sutton(318) 352-6267
WesternThomas R. Willson(318) 442-8658

Chapter 13 Trustees in Louisiana

DistrictNamePhone
EasternSterling J. Beaulieu, Jr.(504) 831-1313
MiddleAnnette C. Crawford(225) 928-2531
WesternE. Eugene Hastings(318) 651-7733
WesternTodd S. Johns(318) 673-8244
WesternKeith A. Rodriguez(337) 233-4413
WesternJon C. Thornburg(318) 448-1306

Do I Have Alternatives to Bankruptcy in Louisiana?

There are several options instead of filing bankruptcy in Louisiana. You can qualify for a bankruptcy discharge in Chapter 7 if you honor the income stipulations. Other choices include debt settlement and a debt consolidation loan. The best advice is to study all the debt relief alternatives on the table, compare the pros and cons, and choose the most suitable.

Ascend specializes in assisting people in getting out of debt. With our and Debt Consolidation Comparison and Debt Settlement Guide, you will have access to several debt-relief solutions such as bankruptcy relief. Our blog also provides additional information regarding Chapter 13 bankruptcies.

Post Author: Ben Tejes

Ben Tejes is a co-founder and CEO of Ascend Finance. Before Ascend, Ben held various executive roles at personal finance companies. Ben specializes in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, Debt Settlement, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and debt payoff methods. In his free time, Ben enjoys spending time going on adventures with his wife and three young daughters.

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