Running a small business is one of the most difficult ways to make a living, no matter where you’re located. Startups close down even before they gain momentum, family-owned businesses go under, partnerships collapse, and countless businesses of all kinds file for bankruptcy as a result of a wide range of factors.
Anyone who owns a business knows these difficulties for themselves, and many business owners view the last gasp of failure as a bankruptcy filing. The fact is, however, that bankruptcy may be a viable solution to keeping your business running successfully in the long-term. Behm Law Group, Ltd. offers legal counsel and protection for businesses filing bankruptcy in Windom, MN, and we can guide you through the process of saving your business for the long run.
The type of bankruptcy that most business owners think of when they view it as a “failure” resulting in closing up shop is Chapter 7 liquidation bankruptcy. While it’s true that the majority of Chapter 7 business bankruptcies will end with a closed down business, there are exceptions and other types of bankruptcy that can support debt relief without forcing a shutdown.
Chapter 13 vs. Chapter 7
If you want to keep your business in operation with a goal of long-term debt relief, then filing for Chapter 13 or Chapter 11 bankruptcy is most likely the best option. Both of these types of bankruptcy work to reorganize your debts into a repayment plan that fits your business budget. Businesses that are not sole proprietorships (LLCs, partnerships, or corporations) are generally not appropriately addressed in Chapter 13 but for those businesses Chapter 11 has its own advantages. For sole proprietorships, Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a better option than Chapter 11 because you can include both your business debts and personal debts in the repayment plan. Additionally, in a Chapter 13 repayment plan you have the option to protect your business property with exemptions, reduce overall debt amounts for unsecured nonpriority debts, and structure your debts overall into a court-approved repayment plan.
Even though most Chapter 7 business bankruptcies result in a closing of that operation, there are times when that shutdown doesn’t occur in a liquidation bankruptcy. Specifically, sole proprietorship businesses can continue to operate their business after a Chapter 7 filing, and like with a Chapter 13 plan, filers can include their personal and business debts in the liquidation process. The types of businesses that continue to operate most successfully after a Chapter 7 liquidation are those with few assets. For example, personal trainers, therapists, consultants, freelancers, and other similar service providers can continue to operate successfully in the face of asset liquidation.
If you’re a business owner struggling to repay debts, filing for bankruptcy can help you continue to operate your business and gain long-term debt relief. To learn more about filing bankruptcy in Windom, MN as a business owner or individual, contact Behm Law Group, Ltd. at (507) 387-7200 today.