Owing substantial amounts of debt can make life unbearable. If you spend your days and nights worrying about how you will make your loan payments on time, if you use one credit card to pay another, or if you cannot afford to pay more than the minimum each month, you are most likely falling deeper into debt. You should not be forced to continue struggling under the burden of oppressive debts. The stress of living in debt can affect your physical and emotional health and is often a leading cause of divorce. Tolin & Tolin, PLLC can help you take action to deal with your debt.

Our legal team has decades of legal experience, and we have helped numerous families and individuals in your situation find a way to make a fresh start. We treat each of our clients with professionalism and integrity, and we will work diligently to achieve the best possible result for you. We understand that this is a difficult time for you, and when you come to our office you will receive an in-depth consultation from a compassionate bankruptcy attorney who will explain your options and help you find the solution which is best suited for you.

Debt Relief Solutions

Many of our clients choose to file for bankruptcy. Whether you choose Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, bankruptcy gives you the opportunity to discharge your debt in a relatively short period of time. Bankruptcy is the most extensive form of debt relief available. We will guide you through every step of the bankruptcy process; helping you gather the necessary documentation, determining whether you will pass the means test, and maximizing bankruptcy exemptions to protect your assets. We will do everything we can to assist you in pursuing the substantial benefits of the Bankruptcy Code.

Call us or visit our office today. We are friendly and considerate and will give you the attention you deserve. You have options for getting out of debt, and our goal is to make the legal process easier for you. We strive to build long-term relationships with our clients which extend beyond a specific case by providing the highest possible level of service and doing everything we can to help you make significant, lasting improvements in your life.

Getting Out of Debt

Bankruptcy offers a powerful form of debt relief to people who are struggling to keep up with their loan payments. It allows you to relieve yourself of the majority of your debts in a relatively short period of time. At the end of the process, you will be able to make a fresh start without the constant stress and worry that comes with owing more than you can afford.

It is advisable to work with a skilled bankruptcy lawyer from the beginning to maximize your chances of success. Come to Tolin & Tolin, PLLC, where we have years of experience helping families and individuals with problems similar to yours. We offer comprehensive legal services to help you get out of debt.

Why Hire a Bankruptcy Attorney

If you are considering bankruptcy, it is very important that you know all of your rights and options so that the process goes smoothly and correctly. It is essential for you to be guided by a diligent bankruptcy lawyer so that you have all the facts and can effectively move forward. At Tolin & Tolin, PLLC we have compassion for your situation. We are here to help people restructure their financial lives and get relief from the stresses of overwhelming debt.

If you are considering bankruptcy, there are several reasons why you should hire a bankruptcy attorney:

  • They can protect you from making costly mistakes.
  • They can represent you in court, and potentially influence the judge’s treatment of your case, giving you a much better chance at a favorable outcome.
  • They can help you feel certain throughout the process that nothing is being missed.
    They can protect you from creditor harassment. Once you file, your attorney can have all creditor calls re-routed to their office.
  • They can save you a lot of time and effort.
  • They can explain complex legal terms to you so that you understand the process and can move forward confidently.
  • They can advise you.

You want to get free of debt and achieve a stronger financial life in the near future. An experienced bankruptcy attorney will know what to do and what not to do during the bankruptcy process to help you achieve this.

We understand how stressful this time may be for you. Our firm can compassionately and professionally walk you through the bankruptcy process. We work hard for our clients and take tremendous satisfaction in seeing their lives improve because of bankruptcy relief. Call us for a private consultation today.

Bankruptcy Myths

Many people hesitate to file for bankruptcy simply due to common myths about the subject. If you are struggling under a substantial burden of debt, you should not let misconceptions and rumors prevent you from taking effective action to improve your life. Meet with one of our attorneys to discuss your concerns and learn the facts, so that you can make an informed decision.

Are you having difficulty paying your debts? At Tolin & Tolin, PLLC, we understand how greatly debt can reduce your quality of life. If you spend your days and nights worrying about how you will meet your bills, contact us for help. Do not let myths about bankruptcy prevent you from gaining knowledge about actions you can take to get out of debt. A bankrutpcy lawyer from our team will meet with you to discuss your concerns and help you begin work on a program tailored to your needs.

If I file for bankruptcy, I will lose my house.

Part of the bankruptcy process under Chapter 7 requires the bankruptcy trustee who oversees your case to liquidate assets in order to pay your creditors, but this is not a problem for the vast majority of clients we represent. Thanks to use of state and federal bankruptcy exemptions, the clients’ assets are nearly always entirely protected.

Only financially irresponsible people declare bankruptcy.

Most people who file for bankruptcy do so after a major life event such as divorce, job loss or a medical emergency. The laws are written to prevent debtors from taking unfair advantage of this legal shelter, with barriers such as the means test ensuring that only individuals who truly need bankruptcy are allowed to proceed.

Bankruptcy is easy, and I can do it on my own.

While there is no law which requires that you retain an attorney to represent you in filing for bankruptcy, you are strongly discouraged from representing yourself. The rules and regulations governing the subject are complex, and you could easily make mistakes which would disqualify you or deprive you of the full benefits available.

Declaring bankruptcy will destroy my credit

Your credit score may drop after you declare bankruptcy, but your credit may already be suffering from factors such as a high debt-to-income ratio and missed loan payments. Discharging your debt will significantly improve the situation and free up more of your income so that you can live within your means. Many clients actually see their credit score improve after completing bankruptcy. After 10 years, the bankruptcy will disappear from your credit report.

Avoid Foreclosure

An astonishing number of homeowners in Winston-Salem and Forsyth County have lost their homes to foreclosure, and many more have received notice of default on their mortgages. If you have fallen behind on your mortgage payments, you must take action immediately to avoid losing your home. Even if you are ready to move on, it is advisable to prevent a foreclosure.

“I am here because I want to avoid foreclosure.” If this describes you, you have come to the right place. When you receive a notice of foreclosure from your lender, it is advisable to seek the assistance of a bankruptcy lawyer as early as possible to defend against losing your home. Tolin & Tolin, PLLC focuses on providing our clients with integrity and professionalism. Foreclosure would not only deprive you of the home you love, it could also have a devastating effect on your credit score and would cost you your equity, making it difficult to buy a new home in the future. Call us today to allow us to begin work on a plan for helping you prevent this outcome.

Declaring Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is an effective strategy for a homeowner in your situation, as you will be protected from creditor actions by an automatic stay as soon as you file your bankruptcy petition. Once you discharge your debts, more of your income will be available to service the mortgage payments.

Bankruptcy Exemptions

If you have heard that declaring bankruptcy will force you to give up your house, your car, your jewelry or your family heirlooms, you have been misinformed. The fact is that state and federal exemptions allow the vast majority of debtors to keep everything they own. We have extensive experience with the applicable laws and will apply them judiciously to defend your personal estate.

Nobody should have to live life in a constant struggle to keep from falling behind financially, and the bankruptcy laws are written to provide individuals who have had the misfortune of getting in over their heads in debt with a solution that does not involve sacrificing all your personal possessions. At Tolin & Tolin, PLLC, we work diligently to ensure our clients enjoy the full benefits that bankruptcy has to offer. You may be able to put an end to your money problems sooner than you think—call us today.

Some mistakenly believe that the property of anyone who files under Chapter 7 is subject to liquidation. Many people continue to struggle under the burden of unmanageable debt as a result of this misconception, often losing their homes to foreclosure, believing that they have no other option. It is true that part of the bankruptcy process involves a review of your assets to determine whether anything can be sold to satisfy your debts, but the majority of bankruptcies we file are “no-asset” cases, meaning that the client loses nothing but debt.

Exemptions in Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

We make use of the extensive list of exemptions that are provided by state and federal statutes. We understand how these exemptions apply, and your bankruptcy attorney will apply them to the full extent possible to help you preserve your assets. Chapter 7 offers you the opportunity of discharging your debt within a relatively short period of time and, with the use of exemptions; you should be able to avoid losing your house, your car, or your valued possessions.

Chapter 7

Are you falling behind on your debts? Are you watching life pass you by while you worry about money and bills? Are you ready to take decisive action to get out of debt? If you answered ”Yes” to any of these questions, you may be eligible to declare bankruptcy under Chapter 7, making it possible for you to sweep away the majority of your debts within a relatively short period of time. It is not easy, and some people who attempt to declare Chapter 7 bankruptcy are denied by the court, so it is advisable to work with a diligent bankruptcy lawyer from the beginning of the process. Come to Tolin & Tolin, PLLC, where we have experience assisting people with problems similar to yours.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy offers the most sweeping form of debt relief available under federal law. It allows you to discharge nearly all of your unsecured debts, usually within a matter of months. The process can be difficult, and it is easy to mistakenly disqualify yourself, so it is highly advisable to work with an experienced attorney from the beginning.

Before you can move forward with a Chapter 7 petition, you will have to supply proof to the court that you have attended an approved course of debt counseling within the past 180 days. An attorney from our firm will work closely with you to gather the necessary information for your application and will represent you in court. We strive to make the entire process as easy as possible for you, and will take any actions necessary to expedite the process. Our goal is to receive the order discharging your debt as soon as possible, usually within a few months.

Am I qualified for Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Chapter 7 bankruptcy makes it possible for you to relieve yourself of nearly all your debts, without the obligation of repayment. To shield creditors from abuse of this powerful legal shelter, the Federal Government has instituted a means test that screens out petitioners whose financial situation does not truly merit the protections of Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It is easy to make mistakes at this step in the bankruptcy process, but with our help, you can avoid unnecessarily disqualifying yourself. Even if you are not eligible for Chapter 7, you may still be able to file under Chapter 13.

Chapter 13

Even if you cannot qualify for debt relief through Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you may still be able to file under Chapter 13, which is in many ways superior and involves reorganizing your existing debts. Instead of being forced to keep track of several loans, each with different due dates and minimum payment amounts, you will make a single payment each month for 3 or 5 years. At the end of this period, you will be released from the obligation to pay any remaining balance. A bankruptcy attorney from Tolin & Tolin, PLLC can guide you through the process of preparing your petition and will represent you in court, working to help you take full advantage of this opportunity. Our legal team strives to deliver professional, compassionate service to earn your trust as a client into the future.

In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the debtor is not granted an immediate debt discharge as in Chapter 7. It is designed for individuals whose income is sufficient to continue repayment, but who cannot really satisfy all their debts any time in the near future. If you find that the majority of your paycheck goes toward loan payments and you barely have enough left over for your daily expenses, you will likely be eligible for Chapter 13 debt relief.

Chapter 13 Debt Restructuring

A Chapter 13 bankruptcy will give you the opportunity of discharging your debt after a 3 or 5 year period of repayment. An attorney from our firm will help you propose a repayment plan which satisfies the expectations of the court but still leaves you with sufficient funds to pay for your daily expenses and to live comfortably. If you have been threatened with foreclosure, you may be able to include your missed payments in the repayment plan, allowing you to catch up over a longer period of time. At the end of your payment period, your creditors will be legally forbidden from taking action to recover any outstanding balance on your loans.

Debt Litigation

Are you being sued by a debt collector? If you fail to take action, the court may allow your creditor to sell your assets in an attempt to collect what you owe. This could place you in serious financial difficulty. An attorney from our firm can represent you in court. You have several options for resolving the situation, but it is vital to take action as soon as possible.

When you fall behind on your loan payments or go into default, your creditor has a legal right to demand that you catch up the amount that is in arrears, and if you still do not pay, you can face a lawsuit.  Most debtors who find themselves in this position are honest, hardworking people who have fallen into financial difficulty and deserve help resolving the situation. If you face legal action over bad debts, you can find support by retaining a dedicated bankruptcy lawyer from Tolin & Tolin, PLLC. We understand what a difficult time this may be for you and your family, and we sincerely care to help you find a solution to the situation.

The goal of the lawsuit is to obtain a judgment against you. If you lose the case, the creditor will obtain a judgment against you. The creditor can then seek to execute the judgment by selling your assets.

An attorney from our firm will review the loan documents and any other evidence relevant to your case.  If this is not your only problem with debt, it may be advisable to declare bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13.  As soon as you file your petition for bankruptcy, you will be protected from creditor actions by an automatic stay, effectively shielding you from repossession, foreclosure and other adverse actions.

Debt Relief

Do you feel trapped in debt? You are not alone. Debt is a major problem, as increasing numbers of people in our community are falling behind on their loan payments, and many families are losing their homes to foreclosure. Owing large amounts of money can be stressful and is a leading cause of divorce. If you continue paying the minimum payment on your credit cards and other loans or are using one credit card to pay the others, you may never get out of debt. It is time to take decisive action.

When you are over your head in debt, you have a right to seek relief. Our firm is committed to helping individuals in your position find solutions for getting out of debt, and we know how to get results. You are not the only person who is struggling with loan payments and monthly bills, and you deserve a second chance. A hard-working bankruptcy attorney from Tolin & Tolin, PLLC can meet with you at your earliest convenience for a consultation and to begin work on a plan for resolving the problems you face. We serve each of our clients with integrity and professionalism and will work diligently to achieve the best result possible for you.

Declaring bankruptcy is the most sweeping form of debt relief available. Under Chapter 7, you will see the majority of your debts disappear within a matter of months, while a Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows you to be free from debt after a 3 or 5-year period of repayment. If you are currently living with the threat of foreclosure, or repossession, filing for bankruptcy will shield you with an automatic stay against creditor actions as soon as you submit your petition to the court.

Discharging Your Debt

When you complete the process of declaring bankruptcy, the majority of your debts will be discharged. You will no longer be obligated to pay on those discharged loans, and your creditors will be prohibited from taking action against you. More of your income will be available to enjoy today and invest in tomorrow.

Debt is a fact of life for most people in our country, but if the amount you owe has gotten out of control, you have a right to seek relief. The Federal Government provides bankruptcy as a legal shelter for individuals and families who find themselves struggling under an oppressive burden of debt. The laws on the subject are complex, and many eligible debtors are erroneously disqualified through simple mistakes and a lack of understanding of the system. When your chance at a fresh start and a future without debt is at stake, it is advisable to retain a hard-working bankruptcy attorney for caring guidance and skilled representation.

Discharging your debt is the final goal of the bankruptcy process. As soon as your petition is approved by the court, your creditors will be legally prohibited from taking any further action to collect on the balance of your loans. The discharge in a Chapter 7 case normally occurs approximately 6 months after the initial filing, and it primarily affects unsecured debts, leaving a home mortgage or a car loan intact under most circumstances. If you file under Chapter 13, you will continue servicing your debts in a repayment plan for a period of 3 or 5 years, after which any remaining balances will be discharged.

When you complete your bankruptcy, you will suddenly have a larger percentage of your income available to pay for your daily living expenses, as well as being able to afford more of what life has to offer. You may be able to begin saving and investing in the future, and you will no longer be forced to spend your life worrying about how you will meet your loan payments. You will have a fresh start and a chance to build a strong foundation of financial security. At Tolin & Tolin, PLLC, we sincerely want to help you achieve this goal. Call us today or visit our office for a consultation and to begin work on your petition.


If you have fallen behind on your mortgage payments, you are at risk of losing your home to foreclosure. This could not only force you out of your home, it may also cause severe damage to your credit score. We can help you fight to keep your house, but it is vital to take action as early as possible.

If you are facing foreclosing on your home, you need to speak to a bankruptcy lawyer first. A knowledgeable attorney will be able to go over your foreclosure options that may be able to save your home. If you do decide that foreclosure is your best option, your lawyer will walk you through the proceeding. You may feel pressured and overwhelmed when dealing with your lender or bank, especially if they are a large company. This is normal, and allowing a hard-working attorney to do your fighting for you may be the first step toward putting your finances back in order.

When it comes to the defense of your home, you want to know you are working with the best. Tolin & Tolin, PLLC is here to help. Your home and long-term financial health are our top priority. Our firm is here to make sure you understand your options. Having a compassionate attorney on your side during this process can make a difficult time much less stressful.

Foreclosure takes place if your mortgage or deed of trust includes a power of sale clause. This kind of clause means that you have previously agreed to the sale of your property in the event that you default on your mortgage, and that the sale amount will go toward paying the remaining balance on your loan. Unfortunately, foreclosures can be confusing, often requiring detailed knowledge of foreclosure law. If you are facing the loss of your home, it is best to get a lawyer on your side as soon as possible.

Means Test

Chapter 7 bankruptcy will relieve you of the obligation to pay the majority of your debts. It is a sweeping form of debt relief. To protect creditors against abuse of this powerful legal instrument, Congress has instituted a means test which determines whether your income is sufficient to pay your debts. An attorney from our firm can guide you through the Means Test analysis.

The means test is a two-step process that will determine whether you qualify for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The first step is a median income comparison. A bankruptcy attorney will be able to help you calculate your yearly family income, and compare that to your median state income for a family of similar size. If you land above the median income level, you will complete step two, which calculates your unsecured debts and disposable income. This will determine how much if any, disposable income you have available to pay back to your lenders. You can prepare for the means test by providing your attorney with your financial documents. Though the bankruptcy process can be complex and stressful, with a compassionate lawyer on your side, it does not have to be overwhelming.

Tolin & Tolin, PLLC will walk you through the means test process. After you choose which kind of bankruptcy is your best option, our firm can put a stop to any creditor harassment you may be experiencing. We understand that this is a stressful time for you and your family, and your long-term financial benefit is our top priority. We can also help you start over, and put you on the path to credit restoration.


Creditors have a legal right to claim the collateral used to secure a loan which has gone into default, but they are required by law to follow strict guidelines in doing so. Proving a violation of your rights could help you get your car or other item back, and it may also be possible to intervene to prevent a repossession before it takes place.

If you are behind on payments, creditors may seize your personal property. Cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, campers, and similar property can all be legally repossessed. If you believe you are in danger of losing your vehicle or other property, you are urged to contact a bankruptcy attorney for knowledgeable legal guidance. At Tolin & Tolin, PLLC, we will diligently work to help you avoid repossession.

We have great compassion for individuals and families hit hard by tough economic times. Having your car repossessed makes an already difficult situation all the worse, inhibiting your ability to get around and travel to and from work. Bankruptcy may in fact be your best option to stop repossession or to help get your property returned. We can explain your options to you and implement an effective strategy to protect your rights.

Stop Credit Calls

You do not have to put up with incessant phone calls from creditors and debt collectors who use abusive language or threats to try to get you to pay. As soon as you retain us to represent you, you can inform callers to speak with us about the situation. We will work closely with you to resolve your debts so that you can live your life free from such annoyances.

Creditors and collection agencies sometimes act in ethically and legally questionable ways, including constantly calling to collect on debts. At Tolin & Tolin, PLLC, we help individuals get free from constant creditor calls. There are laws in place to protect debtors, and we can help you implement actions to ensure fair treatment from creditors. If you wish to put an end to these calls, please contact a bankruptcy lawyer at Tolin & Tolin, PLLC.

Bankruptcy can be an excellent method for stopping debt collection calls. As soon as you file, you will be entitled to an “automatic stay,” and will able to have all calls sent to our office. In most cases, we can stop your incoming calls concerning credit card debt, medical bills, mortgage payments and tax debt. Attorneys at our firm understand how stressful constant credit calls can be.

Our firm is committed to helping you rise above your current financial challenges and move towards a better future. We believe in integrity and professionalism in our handling of your case. We care about your situation, and are here to listen and act on your behalf. Call us today to discuss how we can help you.

The Bankruptcy Process

Declaring bankruptcy is not a simple process, and it is advisable to work with an attorney who can help you achieve the best possible results. It begins with filing your petition in court and ends with the discharge of your debts, but there is an enormous amount of paperwork and legal procedure along the way, with considerable potential for costly mistakes.

Bankruptcy Frequently Asked Questions

Am I qualified for bankruptcy?

If you have found this page because you are tired of living in debt, there is a good chance that you are eligible to declare bankruptcy. The Federal Government provides this legal shelter for individuals who are struggling with the burden of significant debt, such as after a major medical event, divorce, or job loss. There is a means test that will determine whether you can file under Chapter 7, but even if you do not pass the test, Chapter 13 still offers significant debt relief.

How long does it take?

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy can usually be completed within 6 months of the date when you file your petition, while Chapter 13 involves a predetermined period of continued payments on your debts, either 3 or 5 years. You will be required to attend a course of debt counseling before you can begin the bankruptcy process, but this does not usually take long and can be done online.

Do I have to hire an attorney?

You are not required by law to retain a bankruptcy attorney to represent you, but it is highly advisable that you do so. Without extensive familiarity and experience with bankruptcy law, you are at risk of mistakenly disqualifying yourself from filing, and you could also make errors that would leave you with unnecessary debts at the end of the bankruptcy. It is also possible that you could lose your home or other property through failure to properly apply for bankruptcy exemptions.

Questions & Answers About Bankruptcy

The team at Tolin & Tolin, PLLC has a lot of experience with bankruptcy, and if you are determined to get out of debt, we have the answers you are looking for. You should not have to keep living with the stress and anxiety of owing more than you can afford to pay back. We are considerate and hard-working and will give you the individual attention you deserve. Call us or visit our office today for a consultation.

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