Albuquerque Bankruptcy & Estate Planning Lawyers
Providing Bankruptcy and Estate Planning Legal Services Throughout New Mexico
We came together to start Maxwell Gilchrist because we had a vision of supporting our clients through the ups and downs of their financial lives. Wherever our clients are in their financial lives, we want to support and help them to reach the next part.
Not everyone needs a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, but for those that do, it can be a life-changing tool. A Chapter 7 allows to individuals to discharge most of the unsecured debts. The Chapter 7 lets individuals start over. Most often, our clients come to us for a Chapter 7 after they had a major change in their life circumstances and they do not have the income or the assets to pay back their debts. We have represented clients who have gone through a divorce, lost a job, or suffered a medical emergency, with bills climbing into the thousands of dollars. There are many reasons to consider a Chapter 7 bankruptcy if you have debts that you just cannot keep up. Both of our lawyers are experienced in the area of bankruptcy and either one is available for a free consultation.
A Chapter 13 provides individuals or couples the opportunity to reorganize or repay their debts over time. In order to qualify for Chapter 13, the person must have regular income and enough of it. Although most of our clients would rather be in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a Chapter 13 is a great option if you are facing a foreclosure or have tax liens. Chapter 13 bankruptcies are considered more complicated as they require a proposed payment plan and they can last between 3 to 5 years. Not many Albuquerque bankruptcy lawyers file Chapter 13, but we love them and would love to help work out a plan that will help you repay your debts over time.
Deciding whether to file a bankruptcy as well as what bankruptcy chapter you should file under can be a complicated decision as there are many factors at play; such as your income, your assets and your debts. Hiring an attorney will ensure that you obtain your goal, whether it be a discharge or a repayment. Hiring the right attorney will ensure that you are listened to and that the process is smooth as possible.
Some people believe that they don’t have enough assets or property to prepare an estate plan. However, even if you haven’t drafted an estate plan, the State of New Mexico has an estate plan in place for you. It may not be the plan that you would have wanted. If you do not have an estate plan in place, you could be leaving a big mess for those who survive you. For example, if you have real estate, the home will need to be probated through the New Mexico court. Other assets, depending on their size and value, may also need to be probated through the New Mexico courts. To have property go through probate increases the length of time before heirs can receive their inheritance and it costs time and money. Moreover, after losing a loved one, most individuals do not want to deal with a lawyer and the headache of probate court.
Even if you don’t have real property and you believe your assets are minimal, if you have minor children, it is incredibly important to name a guardian for those minor children. If you were not able to be there as your children grow up, who would you want them to be raised by? Maybe you have someone who is great at the finances and someone else would be a wonderful guardian. If the unthinkable were to happen to you, have you ensured your children will be cared for? Estate planning is a bit like insurance – you prepare for the worst and then hope you never have to use.
Attorney Grieta Gilchrist has the experience and the knowledge to guide through these decisions and when you design your estate plan with her, you will have plan that works best for you and your unique circumstances.