ch.7 or ch.13? i'm in trouble.



i'm about to file for bankruptcy in michigan and would like to do as
much of the work and filing on my own without an attorney. after i
file the initial papers, i will sign up on a list at the court for a
pro bono attorney.

my situation is this: i have 2 secured debts against my home which
equal the appraised value, 103K. i have no accounts on my credit
report showing 30 days late...all are in good standing. however, very
bad score because i have maxed out the credit cards. at this time i
don't see how i can afford to pay my unsecured debts which total 50K.
my total debt is about 153K. i earn 640.00 gross a week with no
overtime available. i have yet to file my 2001, 2002 or 2003 income
tax return and i'm certain i will owe at least 1K per year cuz i claim
6 exemptions and not enough deductions to itemize (i will be preparing
my taxes this weekend). i zeroed out my bank account 2 weeks ago
after bouncing 4 checks, a first for me. better not to have an
account. i also have no liens or judgments at this time. i also have
nothing of any value to be retirements plans,
investments, vehicles, furniture etc. i accumulated all my debt,
except for 40K of it, in the past 2 years.

as of today, unless recommended, i will no longer be paying anything
on my credit cards because i can't maintain those payments as well as
my cost of living (house payment and utilities etc). i lead a very
simple life and can live very inexpensively. i have not prepared a
three to five year payment plan to see how the chapter 13 would work
out for me or if it's even possible. i have done very little research
on the exempt properties but what i have read is that there is a way
to keep my house. so, having said all that, can i file chapter 7 and
keep my house? can i pick and choose the debts i want to discharge?
i can afford my monthly payments to pay my loans for the 2 secured
debts which total 103K, it's the ccc debt i can't do. if i lose my
house, i have nowhere to go. the judge will not be looking at me very
favorably either because all of my debt, except 40K, is from gambling.

i think i have located all the forms online necessary for filing
(without an attorney initially) at now i just need to
file. all advice, suggestions, recommendations, thoughts and opinions
are welcome. thanks in advance to all that take the time to read my
post and reply.

just a note: i have given up my gambling addiction and have replaced
it with learning...learning web design (currently enrolled).


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