What is an Automatic Stay?
When you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy in order to discharge all or some of your debt or to save your home from foreclosure, it initiates an “automatic stay.” This is an injunction that requires all collection agencies and creditors to stop their collection activities and all attempts to contact you. This means they can no longer call you, e-mail you, or send collection letters to your home when attempting to collect a debt from you.
How Do You Get an Automatic Stay?
As the name implies, an automatic stay is granted the moment your Alva Wesley-Thomas & Associates P.C. bankruptcy lawyer files bankruptcy on your behalf. At this point, the bankruptcy court notifies your creditors about the filing and demands that they cease all communication attempts. Furthermore, they will collect certain information from them such the amount of the debt you owe, the date the indebtedness occurred, and other information relevant to your case.
How Can an Automatic Stay Benefit You?
When creditors are constantly calling you on your phone, e-mailing you, or sending letters to your home, taking back the control of your finances can be a daunting task. Although any creditor can petition a bankruptcy court to lift the stay, it can still buy you some time to get caught up on your monthly mortgage and/or vehicle payments before you are foreclosed on or your vehicle(s) get repossessed.
If you’re a renter and have fallen behind on your rent, your landlord or property manager can ask the court to lift the stay so they can evict you. However, they cannot evict you if you manage to get caught up on your rent during that time frame. Regardless of the circumstances, you should contact Alva Wesley-Thomas & Associates P.C. immediately and speak with a bankruptcy attorney or foreclosure attorney.
We Can Protect Your Rights
Even if you haven’t filed bankruptcy, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act guarantees your right against harassment by creditors. According to the law, creditors cannot:
- contact you at your work if you’re not allowed to receive phone calls
- contact you before 8am or later than 9pm
- make misleading representations when attempting to collect a debt
- threaten to contact the police and have you arrested
- use obscene or profane language when talking to you
We know that your situation is difficult and with the financial crunch, not just you but your whole family undergoes the stress. It is good to consult with a lawyer that has extensive experience in similar cases. If you’re overwhelmed with debt and considering filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, contact Alva Wesley-Thomas & Associates P.C. today at 713-278-0800 for a FREE Consultation.