Bankruptcy can eliminate surcharges in New Jersey. Whether you are filing a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13, surcharges can be eliminated in most cases as long as you can eliminate your other unsecured debts as well. The law on this issue has changed over time but the current position of the NJ DMV is to no longer pursue the surcharges. If you are currently suspended solely for the nonpayment of the surcharges than the bankruptcy will allow you to apply to reinstate your drivers license. If you are suspended for another reason, the bankruptcy will address the financial obligation, but you will not be able to get your license reinstated until the non financial related suspension has been served.
Chapter 11 Bankruptcy is available to businesses that desire to sell their assets but have debts exceeding the value of the assets. While Chapter 7 can be used for a liquidation of assets there are circumstances where it is important to maximize the amount received and selling as a going concern makes more sense. A Chapter 11 liquidating plan can be used for that purpose. However, sometimes it is necessary to have a more immediate sale and waiting until the confirmation hearing is not an option. In that situation the company can seek to sell its assets through a sale pursuant to section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code. The section is usually used to sell specific assets but more and more it is used to sell all of the company's assets. Generally the seller must demonstrate that business may not survive until confirmation and this is the best opportunity for creditors to be paid. The 363 sale is not for all sales but in some cases it may be the best option.
Exemptions are used to protect assets in bankruptcy. A trustee will not sell your assets in bankruptcy if they are exempt. Which exemptions apply depend on where you live and how long you have lived there. For example, if you live in Cherry Hill NJ and file a bankruptcy, you would generally have the option of using the Federal exemptions or the New Jersey state exemptions. In most cases the Federal exemptions would provide more protections than the NJ exemptions. In Philadelphia PA you would also have the option of using state or Federal exemptions. Some states opt out of the Federal exemptions and you can only use the state exemptions. Even if you are living in Cherry Hill NJ and file bankruptcy there, you may not be able to use the Federal or NJ exemptions. That is because if you have not lived in your state for the last 730 days, than you must apply the exemptions used by the state where you lived before the last 730 days. It is important that your attorney is made aware of where you have resided for the few years leading up to the bankruptcy.