Be Thorough In Preparing Your Chapter 7 Filing
Try your best to get it right the first time. Make sure you have all of the necessary forms including those local forms that the Court in your jurisdiction may require. Then, go back and check them over several times. Review the law, review your circumstances then review what youve drafted while you have your documentation assembled for easy reference.
Check your math. Consider taking a break then having another look with fresh eyes at everything youve done. There are stiff penalties for knowingly making material misstatements. Mistakes or omissions on your part may be inadvertent, but the bankruptcy trustee might not see them that way.
Bankruptcy Ch 7 / 13 Legal Forms Software
File personal Bankruptcy with easy-to-use forms and step-by-step instructions. If Bankruptcy is your only option to escape crushing personal debt, Standard Legal can save you time, stress and a significant amount of money. Everything needed to complete a Chapter 7 or 13 Bankruptcy is provided, whether filing individually or jointly as a married couple. Includes all required federal forms, an up-to-date Means Test, samples, overviews, instructions, plus all forms and exemptions from each of the 90+ U.S. District Bankruptcy Courts.
What Bankruptcy Software Guarantees Mean
Note that some of these sites guarantee that your forms will be accepted by the court or that you will receive a discharge. Thats not quite what it seems.
Guaranteed acceptance doesnt mean that the court will accept your forms and allow the case to be filed under all circumstances. The guaranteed discharge does not mean that you will receive a discharge. Even an experienced bankruptcy attorney won’t make that guarantee. All it means is that if your paperwork is insufficient or you dont get your discharge, the company will refund your money. Maybe.
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Filling Out Bankruptcy Paperwork
Even if the debtor chooses the correct chapter, pitfalls abound in the paperwork phase of bankruptcy.
- Failing to file required documents. Bankruptcy is form-driven. You’ll have to complete a lengthy federal packet, and, in some cases, your court will have local forms, as well. Many self-represented bankruptcy debtors don’t file all of the required bankruptcy documents, which, if not remedied, will result in a dismissal of the case. You can find information on the forms you’ll need, filing fees, and more in our Filing for Bankruptcy: Getting Started section.
- Failing to protect property.You don’t lose everything in bankruptcy. Property exemptions play a vital role in protecting property in both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. But, many pro se filers don’t list the proper exemption to keep an item of property, and, as a result, risk losing it. If you stand to lose valuable property or property you care about , a visit to an attorney might be well worth the money.
- Failing to take required education courses. In Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy filers must receive from an approved provider before filing for bankruptcy, and complete a financial management course before getting a discharge. Many pro se debtors, confused about these requirements, fail to file the proper certificate, which can result in a dismissal of the case.
What Is A Bankruptcy Petition Preparer
A bankruptcy petition preparer is any person or business, other than a lawyer or someone who works for a lawyer, that charges a fee to prepare bankruptcy documents. Under your direction and control, the bankruptcy petition preparer generates bankruptcy forms for you to file either by typing them or inputting information into a bankruptcy software program.
Because bankruptcy petition preparers are not attorneys, they can’t provide legal advice or represent you in bankruptcy court. Specifically, they can’t:
- tell you which type of bankruptcy to file
- tell you not to list certain debts
- tell you not to list certain assets, or
- tell you what property to exempt.
In essence, you must understand what debts your bankruptcy will discharge, what will happen to your property in the bankruptcy, and what laws should be used to exempt your property from being taken for the benefit of your creditors.
Also, you must file the bankruptcy papers yourself and represent yourself in court. In other words, you are responsible for your case. You act as your attorney and use the bankruptcy petition preparer as a typing service that transposes the information you give them onto the official forms.
Dont Forget About Business Ownership
Even if youve moved on, you might still have interests in a corporation or a business venture. Its essential to disclose these interests to the bankruptcy trustee. You will also need to be conversant with local bankruptcy court rules. Certain circumstances may also require that you do a little research into how bankruptcy law has been applied to similar circumstances by the Bankruptcy Court in your area.
See If You Qualify For Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
The first thing you should do is to see if you qualify and if you should file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Before you get started on your DIY Chapter 7 bankruptcy learn the basics.
See if you qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Figure out how much you owe and if you can pay it back.
Consider your alternatives too. If you can repay your debts, or can negotiate a payment plan with your creditors you might not need a DIY Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
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Best Do It Yourself Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Software
5 minute read â¢Upsolve is a nonprofit tool that helps you file bankruptcy for free.Think TurboTax for bankruptcy. Get free education, customer support, and community. Featured in Forbes 4x and funded by institutions like Harvard University so we’ll never ask you for a credit card.Explore our free tool
In a Nutshell
Bankruptcy doesn’t have to be expensive or confusing. You can use do-it-yourself Chapter 7 bankruptcy software online. Check out Upsolve to get started with our free bankruptcy process.
This article explains how to pick the best Chapter 7 bankruptcy software for your unique situation. There are many different consumer bankruptcy software options out there. This article explains your options to help you out in your own DIY bankruptcy.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Forms Explained
Upsolve is a nonprofit tool that helps you file bankruptcy for free.Think TurboTax for bankruptcy. Get free education, customer support, and community. Featured in Forbes 4x and funded by institutions like Harvard University so we’ll never ask you for a credit card.Explore our free tool
In a Nutshell
The Chapter 7 forms packet consists of a voluntary petition, schedules, and statements. The term âpetitionâ is often used to describe the set of forms individuals filing for bankruptcy submit to the court. Here’s a walk through of all of them.
Written byAttorney Andrea Wimmer.
To file Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you have to submit the Chapter 7 bankruptcy forms to the court. There are about 23 official forms that are the same in Chapter 7 cases filed anywhere in the United States. Most bankruptcy courts also require certain local forms .
The Chapter 7 forms packet consists of a voluntary petition , schedules, and statements. The term âpetitionâ is often used to describe the set of forms individuals filing for bankruptcy submit to the court.
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Why Use A Bankruptcy Petition Preparer
A good bankruptcy petition preparer will have up-to-date bankruptcy computer software that will generate the documents quickly and relatively easily. And most bankruptcy petition preparers charge low fees, especially compared to lawyers.
Bankruptcy law requires bankruptcy petition preparers to follow these business practices:
- provide a written contract defining their services and fees
- provide written disclosures summarizing the different kinds of bankruptcy and the associated procedures
- identify themselves as debt relief agencies providing services under the federal bankruptcy code
- not charge an unreasonable fee
- not collect or handle the bankruptcy filing fees or other court fees
- file a fee disclosure statement with the court
- include their name and social security or tax identification number on the documents they prepare, and
- not use, or advertise with, the word “legal” or any similar term.
People who help others for free are not subject to these rules.
Other Do It Yourself Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Software Resources
If you are looking for do it yourself Chapter 7 bankruptcy software, consider looking at your local courtâs website. Many courts provide information about other ways to have a DIY bankruptcy. For instance, the Eastern District of New York provides a list of consumer bankruptcy software providers.
If you want a different consumer bankruptcy software, checking your local court may be a good way to find something to meet your DIY needs.
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So how do we make money? Our partners compensate us. This may influence which products we review and write about , but it in no way affects our recommendations or advice, which are grounded in thousands of hours of research. Our partners cannot pay us to guarantee favorable reviews of their products or services.Here is a list of our partners.
What If I Filed Bankruptcy And It Was Dismissed
A dismissed bankruptcy means that you will be once again liable for your debts.
There is a big difference between your debts being discharged and a bankruptcy dismissal. If a bankruptcy is dismissed, all bets are off. You’ll have to figure out at that point how you’re going to pay your creditors or if you will re-file your bankruptcy.
Dismissal can happen for a number of reasons but typically it’s because the court found problems with the filing or the debtor violated the terms. Once the bankruptcy is dismissed that information will be reported to the credit bureaus as well.
Some contributed material by James R. Vann VANN & SHERIDAN, LLP Attorneys at Law
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When Is It Feasible To File Without An Attorney
The general rule is the simpler your bankruptcy, the better your chances are to complete it and receive a bankruptcy dischargethe order erasing debton your own. Your case is likely simple enough to handle without an attorney if:
- you pass the first portion of the Chapter 7 means test
- you don’t own much property
- you don’t have any priority debts you can’t discharge, and
- creditors aren’t alleging fraud against you.
However, keep in mind that even the most straightforward Chapter 7 requires you to fill out extensive paperwork, gather financial documentation, research bankruptcy, and exemption laws, and follow the local rules and procedures. At the very least, if you want to file pro se, use a good self-help bankruptcy book like Nolo’s How to File for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, by Attorney Cara O’Neill and Albin Renauer, J.D.
Free Consultation: Oklahoma City Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Lawyer
Chapter 7 bankruptcy provides a way out from under the worry, stress and embarrassment of garnishments and collection calls. With your debts discharged, you can begin to rebuild your financial life. If youre not absolutely certain you have the skill, time and wherewithal to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy without a lawyer, call the Debtline Law Office today.
Even if youre still considering a pro se filing, our experienced Oklahoma City Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney is available to answer your questions about whether pro se is the best way to handle this important financial step. For a free consultation, call the Deptline Law Office today at Debt-Line or 563-7888, or if you prefer, send us a question using the Ask The Attorney form at the top of this page.
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Three: File All Required Forms And Documents
Make copies of all of the above completed court forms. These will be for your files. To prepare for filing with the court, you will also need copies of these documents:
- certificate of credit counseling
- any debt repayment plan you developed during your credit counseling
File with the Clerk of the Bankruptcy Court all of the forms and documents listed above. Make sure that you have provided complete information on all of the court forms. Your petition can be dismissed for failure to provide all required information.
Maine has bankruptcy courts in Portland and Bangor. File in the court serving the area where you have lived for the last six months . Go to list of counties served by each of these Maine Courts.
At the same time you file, you must pay the filing fee and related court fees. The total cost is $353. A husband and wife filing a single petition will pay one filing fee.
If you have a low income and cannot afford these fees, you have two other options:
- You can ask the court to let you pay the fee in installments. Use Form B3A.
- You can ask the court for a fee waiver. Use Form B3B.
File this form with your other court papers. The court must waive your filings fees if your income is below 150% of the current poverty level and you cannot afford to pay in installments. If the court grants your waiver or installment plan, your case will be filed. If your waiver is denied, you will have to follow the court’s order on payment of fees to avoid dismissal.
When You’ll Need A Bankruptcy Attorney
It’s usually best for any bankruptcy filer to hire an attorney. That said, as discussed above, individuals can represent themselves in the right circumstances. It just depends on the case and the comfort level of the person.
You’re Filing for Chapter 13
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a powerful financial tool that can allow you to:
- catch up on your missed mortgage or car loan payments
- eliminate unsecured junior liens from your home through lien stripping, or
- reduce the principal balance or interest rate on your car loan with a cramdown.
But Chapter 13 bankruptcy is considerably more complicated and labor-intensive than Chapter 7. If you want the court to confirm your Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you must propose a feasible repayment plan, which is challenging to do without legal knowledge and the software used by bankruptcy lawyers.
Further, if you wish to pay less on your house or car by stripping a second mortgage or cramming down a car loan, you’ll need to file a motion or adversary proceeding with the court, which also isn’t an easy task.
Learn more in Releasing Liens in Bankruptcy: Lien Avoidance.
You’re Filing a Complicated Chapter 7
Of course, if you don’t believe you can navigate the bankruptcy process, or if you aren’t comfortable with it, it’s probably best to hire a bankruptcy lawyer.
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While Not A Consumer Bankruptcy Software You Can Download Bankruptcy Forms From The Court If You Want A Truly Diy Bankruptcy
Need to having difficulty do it yourself bankruptcy kit arizona. The software has easy to follow instructions and customized court forms to enter in my personal data, which saved me days of modifying the court forms on my own. You enter your information and click, print and the software does the rest. Avoiding the fake chapter 7 bankruptcy software trap. Unlike other areas of law, consumer chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcy filing is an area in which bankruptcy preparation web sites can do as good a job as a bankruptcy lawyers. There is an approach you can try in an effort to minimize the cost of a chapter 11 bankruptcy, but it doesn’t work in most cases. And you do not have to read any bankruptcy manuals or learn any exemption laws. 5 reasons to avoid chapter 13 bankruptcy. Contrary to what the supporters of the bapcpa thought, the vast majority of those who use chapter 7 have little or no income to spare. Handle the filing of personal bankruptcy on your own, without the expense of an attorney! You can try working with an attorney on an unbundled fee agreement, which basically means that you do most of the paperwork preparation, planning and filing, and you simply pay your attorney to act as a sort of legal coach whenever you have questions or need forms. The best online bankruptcy system made for consumer chapter 7 and chapter 13 bankruptcies. It is because if it is genuine online bankruptcy software, you ought to be able to demo it.
How To Find A Good Bankruptcy Attorney
When seeking legal representation in bankruptcy, you’ll want to look for an experienced bankruptcy lawyer, not a general practitioner. Not only does bankruptcy require understanding how many principles interrelate, making a mistake can be costly. Most lawyers won’t accept a bankruptcy matter unless they practice bankruptcy law regularly.
Here are some suggestions for finding the best bankruptcy lawyer for your job.
Knowing someone who had a good experience with a bankruptcy lawyer is often your best source. Call that lawyer first. Your lawyer might know a good bankruptcy lawyer, as well. Or, if a family member or a friend used a lawyer in a nonbankruptcy matter, ask that lawyer if they would recommend a bankruptcy attorney.
Group Legal Plans
If you’re a member of a plan that provides free or low-cost legal assistance and the plan covers bankruptcies, make that your first stop in looking for a lawyer.
Most county bar associations will give you the names of bankruptcy attorneys who practice in your area. Keep in mind that bar associations don’t screen the lawyers. It’s up to you to check out the credentials and experience of the person to whom the bar association refers you.
Many law schools sponsor legal clinics and provide free legal advice to consumers. Some legal clinics have the same income requirements as Legal Aid others offer free services to low- and moderate-income people.
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