Jupiter Chapter 12 Bankruptcy Attorney

If you are a farmer, fisherman, or fish farm owner, there is a special bankruptcy designed just for you. Chapter 12 is a highly specialized area of law that requires hands on experience. Julianne Frank has handled many Chapter 12 cases all over the state of Florida, and has successfully reorganized every Chapter 12 business she has undertaken.

  • Julianne Frank is a friend and a brilliant attorney.

    “Julianne Frank is a friend and a brilliant attorney.”

    - Johan K.
  • EXCELLENT!!!

    “EXCELLENT!!!”

    - Karolina K.
  • Julianne is a pleasure in all ways, but more importantly, she is a true master of the law as to her specialty, Bankruptcy Law.

    “The case I referred to Julianne was complex and required considerable expertise.”

    - Cecil H.
  • I am not proud that I had to file chapter 11 for my business but I am grateful for Julianne Frank.

    “It was the smoothest process and Julianne has been doing this for 4 decades so she is the only choice when it comes to this matter.

    - Michael B.
  • She handled it professionally and did an excellent job all around.

    “. The future is bright and I am again able to look ahead to retirement. The decision to file was the right one for me.”

    - Paul R.
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What Is Chapter 12 Bankruptcy?

Chapter 12 is a category of bankruptcy that applies specifically to farms and fisheries. Chapter 12 allows proprietors of farms and fisheries to reorganize their finances and debts while still maintaining ownership of their assets. Generally, debtors will work with a bankruptcy trustee and creditors to craft payment programs based on their current financial obligations. The repayment programs can last between 3-5 years.

Two types of farming operations qualify for Chapter 12 bankruptcy – individual operations and corporation or partnerships. An individual or married couple with a farming or commercial fishing operation and regular annual income may file for Chapter 12 and must have:

  • total debts that do not exceed $4,153,150 for a farmer and $1,924,550 for a fisherman;
  • at least 50% of their debts be from the farming operation (for a family farmer);
  • at least 80% of their debts be from the fishing operation (for a family fisherman);
  • more than 50% of their gross income be from the farming or fishing operation for the prior tax year.

A corporation or partnership may also qualify as a family farmer or fisherman eligible for Chapter 12 if they meet the following requirements:

  • more than half of the stock must be owned by one family and its relatives, and they must actively conduct business operations;
  • more than 80% of the company's value must be tied to its farming or fishing operations;
  • total debt limits and percentages are the same as for individual farmers and fishermen;
  • the corporation does not issue publicly traded stock.

Note that regardless of whether the filer is an individual, corporation, or partnership, they must not have willfully failed to appear in court, comply with court orders, or have been voluntarily dismissed after creditors sought payment via bankruptcy court within the last 180 days. Filing individuals must also have received credit counseling from an approved agency within 180 days before filing.

The Filing Process

Chapter 12 bankruptcy follows the same process as other bankruptcies. The process begins when a farmer or fisherman files a petition, and meetings will then be held with creditors under court supervision, where business assets will be measured and may be used to repay the outstanding debt. During the meeting, a trustee appointed by the court may ask certain questions about the petition and financial affairs, which will be used to set up the final payment plan.

Chapter 12 also has an automatic stay provision for consumer debt that prevents creditors from collecting debt. More specifically, an automatic stay prohibits creditors from taking certain collection actions without the permission of the bankruptcy court. It is meant to protect the debtor and anyone liable on any of the debtor’s consumer debts (debts incurred for personal, family, or household purposes rather than the business debts associated with the farming or fishing operation).

A person that wishes to file for Chapter 12 must gather all their financial information and submit the voluntary petition, the schedules, the statement of financial affairs, a complete list of debts and creditors, and any other documents the court requests. These documents and any required fees must be filed with the clerk of the bankruptcy court in the area the person lives or conducts their business.

After the necessary meetings with the appointed trustee and creditors, the debtor must propose a Chapter 12 plan that pays off their debts over a period of 3-5 years. Note that the plan can include secured and unsecured debts, and secured creditors must be paid the value of their collateral and unsecured creditors must receive as much as they would have under a Chapter 7 liquidation. A bankruptcy judge must confirm the plan in a confirmation hearing. After the plan is finalized, the Chapter 12 debtor must make regular payments to the trustee, who will then make payments to creditors.

File Chapter 12 with an Experienced Bankruptcy Lawyer

If you operate a farming or fishing operation in Jupiter, Florida and seek to file for Chapter 12 bankruptcy, find an experienced bankruptcy attorney to take on your case. Bankruptcy law is particularly difficult to navigate due to nuanced complexities of the law, and this is where Julianne Frank, Esq. comes in. She has a proven track record with bankruptcy law and can deftly handle your case, but keep in mind that you should be prepared to dedicate significant time to working with Attorney Frank on your petition. She will carry the legal work, but you should expect to go the extra mile in preparing your financial documents for her. You are most aware of your own debts and assets, and you should get ready to get deep in the trenches with her as you litigate your bankruptcy case together.

Schedule an appointment with Julianne Frank, Esq. at (561) 220-2528 or online here for more information.

What Makes Julianne Frank Different

  • Honesty & Transparency
  • Tailored Solutions for Each Client
  • Client-Focused Representation
  • Over Three Decades of Experience
Start Your Journey Discuss Your Case with a Seasoned Attorney Today

Julianne Frank Esq. is a skilled and experienced attorney that takes on the most difficult of cases and wins. If you believe you have a case only Julianne can resolve, get in touch today.