When Virginia residents file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 personal bankruptcy petitions, an injunction known as an automatic stay is issued. This injunction is designed to give individuals the time they need to put their financial affairs in order, and it places strict limits on creditors. While the automatic stay is in force, efforts to repossess assets or garnish paychecks must be abandoned, and attempts to collect unpaid debts must cease. Creditors who willfully ignore these rules may be ordered to pay punitive as well as compensatory damages.
A complete estate plan may require more than just a will, a trust and powers of attorney. When a person with substantial assets dies, family members sometimes dispute the wording in the will and precipitate lengthy legal battles. Financing such disputes in Virginia could deplete the funds in the estate. There are some things a person could do to reduce the likelihood of family strife following their passing.