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Chapter 13 Budget

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    Question Chapter 13 Budget

    Hello. I have searched the forum but can't find exactly what I'm looking for. I am trying to decide on if I should file Chapter 13 or not (initial meeting with attorney is next week.) I have about $65,000 in unsecured debt, owe 14,000 on a 2020 car, and I am on the deed of a house but not the mortgage (I pay rent.) I'm trying to figure out a budget and I'd love to see some examples. My gross income is around 72,000. I take home 4800 per month. Currently I am paying around half or more of that in minimum debt payments. I have not yet defaulted on any of them but that is right around the corner unless I file. I have many pets as I rescue- so I have a fair amount of expenses for dogs. Also I have neglected to pay things like dental and eye care since money is tight, but I'd like to add them to the budget. I am especially curious about things such as gifts- birthday and Christmas. Are they an allowable expense? How about traveling cross country (cheaply) to see my elderly parents, which I do now twice a year? How about an emergency fund or retirement money (both of which I have been unable to contribute to recently due to high minimum payments.) I retire in 5.5 years and will have much less income if that makes a difference. Thanks so much for any assistance you can give me.
    Last edited by Seabass; 01-11-2023, 04:08 PM.

    I'd let the lawyer run your numbers because so many things affect the payment amount. The chapter 13 payment could be a lot lower than your minimums even with a 100% plan. That deed the the house and car equity might be a problem and force you to pay more as non-exempt assets. If you have too much in non-exempt assets or too much disposable income after subtracting the pre-petition minimum payments, you will have to repay all your unsecured debts up to 100% albeit at 0% and over 5 years instead of 29% over forever. The dog rescue and saving for retirement are going to be a hard sell. Some places might allow a 401k contribution if there was an established history of contributions before filing or if you are getting close to or over 65. You will probably be able to allocate some towards your health although bigger numbers will require proof like a treatment estimate. Gifts are not an allowed expense. Travel to see family is not an allowed expense absent special circumstances. If you do chapter 13, you have to run a very tight ship and the trustee will likely make sure your creditors don't shoulder the burdens of any optional expenses like gifts. In general, single non-homeowners tend to pay more into their 13s.


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