Bankruptcy does not work for everyone. Often the debtor has assets beyond the exemption limits, but is still facing garnishment or levy. In these cases, we look to resolve and settle the debt with the creditors in such a way that the repayment is manageable without needing to file for bankruptcy.
It is important to work with an attorney who has experience in this space. More often than not, we deal with the same creditors time and again and know what their parameters for settlement are and thus are better able to guide the client through the process.