Filing personal bankruptcy: what you need
What do I need to file personal bankruptcy?
That depends on whether yours is a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 proceeding. Usually the most important thing for my clients is that, as soon as you think you might file, stop using the credit cards. A person who is seriously considering filing personal bankruptcy should stop using credit cards.
If you use a credit card within 90 days of filing personal bankruptcy, the use of the card will be scrutinized for fraud. If the court finds that your use of a credit card was fraudulent, the debt will not be discharged. The court may also decide to dismiss your petition as a whole, and you could face criminal fraud charges. If you make a large purchase with a credit card right around the time you file for bankruptcy, the court may get the impression that you never had the intention to repay the debt in the first place. Making credit card purchases without the intention to repay the debt is a fraud. A credit card company may challenge your ability to have the debt owed to it discharged. This challenge is called a non-dischargeability action. Examples include: having an increase in credit card usage shortly before filing; receiving large cash advances in the months prior to filing; credit card charges after consulting with a bankruptcy attorney; and exceeding your credit limit.
Here are the documents you will need to file personal bankruptcy :
Tax Returns :You will usually need to provide copies of your tax returns or tax transcripts for the last two years.
Income Documentation: If you are an employee, you will need copies of paystubs for the six-month period prior to the bankruptcy and your last two W-2s. If you are self-employed, you will probably need to provide a profit and loss statement for the same six-month period as well as business bank statements. If you have income from other sources such as social security, disability, or rental properties, proof of this income is required.
Real Estate:If you own real estate, you will need to provide valuation of the property .
Vehicles If you have cars, you’ll need to provide copies of your registration, proof of insurance, and valuation information. If you have a car loan, will need a recent loan statement showing how much you owe and what your monthly payment is.
Retirement And Bank Accounts:Recent bank and retirement account statements for all accounts.
Miscellaneous :If you have any other special circumstances affecting your bankruptcy such as being required to pay alimony or child support or other unusual expenses, you will need to show proof of these expenses.
How long does this take? Chapter 7 typically usually takes from start to finish in about three months. The biggest issue in finishing the bankruptcy is collecting all the paper worked needed to file the bankruptcy. This is due to the new bankruptcy laws of 2005. You will need to collect everything required in the means test. If you are considering filing start organizing your paper work and documents NOW.
A Chapter 13 usually takes three years to complete but in special cases can take up to five years. This is because in a Chapter 13 ( a debt repayment plan ) the bankruptcy is completed when the payments are completely received by the creditor.
When you’re ready to end your bill problems once and for all, contact me at 619-235-4095 to set up a free, no-obligation meeting to talk about how I can help you.