Coronavirus Stimulus Bill Provides Greater Access to Bankruptcy Relief

Individuals and Businesses will now benefit from expanded bankruptcy protections.  The United States Congress voted to pass the Coronovirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (Cares Act).  Other than providing stimulus money to individuals and small businesses, the Cares Act will allow for expanded debt relief and bankruptcy options.

First, stimulus money received by taxpayers will not count as income for bankruptcy purposes.  The CARES Act provides for payments to certain households across the United States.  Individuals who receive funds under the coronavirus stimulus package will not need to include this income in the eligibility calculations for chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Also existing chapter 13 cases (repayment plans) are able to see a modification of their plan term to 7 years, from the filing of the case, instead of the normal 3-5 years.  This will help clients who have been affected by layoffs, furloughs, or job loss to continue in their existing chapter 13 plans.

Amending the Small Business Reorganization Act of 2019, the CARES Act increases the eligibility threshold for businesses filing under the new Subchapter V from $2,725,625 to $7,500,000.  This increased debt limit will allow small businesses to reorganize under the increased efficiency of Subchapter V.

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