When you can barely rest at home after working all day for bill collectors calling, when every piece of mail is a past-due bill and when you are being threatened with the loss of your home, there are few more effective measures available than the declaration of bankruptcy. While this is not a decision to be made lightly, it will provide you with the means to make a fresh start and get some immediate peace of mind. To learn more about how the automatic stay can help you, read on.

More money in your pocket. Every month, it's the same drill where you struggle to make those huge minimum payments on your credit cards. The good news is that once you file for your chapter 7 bankruptcy, you have already made your last check out to Visa, MasterCard and other credit cards. Credit cards are unsecured debts, meaning that you can include each and every one on your bankruptcy petition, so not only do you not have that debt burden to contend with, you also may have more money in your account for other things.

Peace of mind from collection activities. With your federal filing, you can expect an immediate "stay" on all collection efforts, including phone calls and letters. The creditors cannot, by law, contact you for any reason whatsoever. In the early days, you may need to provide them with your case number, since it may take a week or so for them to be made aware of your filing. Be sure not leave any creditors off your matrix, since doing so could result in a continued obligation.

Stop foreclosure. Unfortunately, your home is not an unsecured debt, since the mortgage holds your home as its collateral. This means that if you are behind on your payments you may lose your home. You can still get some help from the automatic stay, however, since you can expect that foreclosure activity will be halted, at least temporarily.

Stop evictions. If you are behind on your rent, you may be able to prevent your landlord from kicking you out in some circumstances. If the landlord has already filed for an eviction with the court, you may be out of luck. If they have only made threats about an eviction, you may be given a temporary stay. You must take action to bring your rent up to date at some point, but the stay does give you some more time.

Speak to your bankruptcy attorney for more information about what an automatic stay can do for you. For more information, contact companies like Hawkins  Bingham &  Miller.