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How To File Bankruptcy In Texas Without An Attorney

File Bankruptcy In Texas With Help From Leinart Law Firm

How to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Without A Lawyer TX Part 1

If youre interested in filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, the bankruptcy attorneys at Leinart Law Firm are here to guide you through the process or help you seek an alternative debt relief solution if bankruptcy isnt right for you. 

Our firm has offices in Dallas, Fort Worth, and Plano, and were ready to help you and your family get a fresh start after bankruptcy. 

Get a free consultation and talk to an experienced bankruptcy lawyer today. Call today or email .

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Discuss your situation and your options with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer.

Get A Fresh Financial Start

If there are no issues with your bankruptcy, your debts will be discharged in Chapter 7 or you will begin to repay your debts according to the terms of your Chapter 13 plan. If you have any debts that were not eligible to be included in your bankruptcy, make sure to speak to those creditors to work out a payment plan or settlement agreement.

Our bankruptcy attorneys at Leinart Law Firm love to see clients thrive after the heavy weight of debt is lifted off their shoulders. We can provide recommendations about how to deal with any non-dischargeable debts you may still owe and assist you with any settlement negotiations.

Figuring Out If Youre Eligible For Chapter 13

You may qualify for Chapter 13 bankruptcy if you have a steady income and your debts are worth less than the dollar amounts set by federal bankruptcy law. In 2019, the amounts are:

These amounts are adjusted every few years and set out in 11 U.S. Code, Section 109.

In addition, to qualify for Chapter 13, you must have filed your state and federal income tax returns for the past four years.

More About Online Bankruptcy

If bankruptcy is in your future, there are tools online to help you find your way through the maze.

However, it is important to note that while the forms can be downloaded online and there is plenty of help online, the actual filing of the forms, in almost all cases, must be done in person at bankruptcy court.

There is one exception: If an individual is what is called ECF Certified.

ECF stands for Electronic Case Files, and is a way documents are filed online with courts. However, the average person must take classes and be ECF certified and approved by the court to file that way.

Attorneys are ECF certified; the average consumer is not. For most of us, that means finding the location of your bankruptcy court and taking the documents there to file.

In the event that you the consumer need to turn to bankruptcy to solve debt issues and it should always be an option of last resort you can file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Yes, you can go through the paperwork and court process yourself, without an attorney.

But a strong word of warning: Its tricky. Another word of warning: Because its tricky, it behooves you to be careful and precise. A final word of warning: If youre nervous about being careful and precise, its wise to consult with an attorney.

But a great deal of the paperwork and educational requirements can be done online with help from a bankruptcy attorney or a non-attorney bankruptcy petition preparer.

Explore Your Bankruptcy Options

Filing Bankruptcy Without a Lawyer: Resources for Pro Se ...

At Leinart Law Firm, our overriding goal is to provide you with top-notch legal advice and help you obtain financial freedom. We utilize bankruptcy laws to help you stop collections, harassment, foreclosures, repossessions and wage garnishments. Our compassionate, competent team knows that the burden of insurmountable debt can be overwhelming. Were here to help you find relief, understand how to file for bankruptcy, guide you through the process and represent your interests at all bankruptcy proceedings.

Take A Debtor Education Course

Before the court will grant your bankruptcy discharge, you must complete a debtor education course from an approved provider. The purpose of this course is to help you learn how to manage your finances better and may include information about budgeting, interest rates, using credit cards and how you can begin to rebuild your credit for a successful financial future.

After the course is finished, youll file a form 423 and certificate showing that you completed the course. If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must submit your certificate from this course no later than 45 days after the date of your meeting of creditors. You may even take the course before the meeting if you wish.

If you file for Chapter 13, you have until the date you make your last payment to submit your certificate from your debtor education course. However, taking the course early on can help you learn budgeting and money management skills that can benefit you throughout the repayment period.

Deciding When Bankruptcy Is Your Best Option

It can be difficult to decide whether to move forward with a bankruptcy filing in Texas. Attorney Erin B. Shank can help you analyze your situation and give you solid advice regarding all your financial questions. She will offer bankruptcy and non-bankruptcy options with you so that you are able to make a fully informed decision regarding how to address your financial concerns.

If you are behind on your home loan, she will discuss an alternative to save your home without filing a five-year, wage and income tax refund garnishment Chapter 13 bankruptcy case.

Even if you are considering filing bankruptcy without your spouse, Erin meets with you and your spouse in order to advise your non-filing spouse of the ramifications your filing may have on him or her.

Erin and her paralegals will review your credit reports with the three credit reporting agencies, Experian, Transunion, and Equifax, and make sure that any creditors who have posted any derogatory remarks on your credit reports are included in your bankruptcy case filing. When you receive your bankruptcy discharge, Erin sends that Discharge Order to the three credit reporting agencies, asks them to correct your credit report to show that all of these debts have been discharged and you are then sent corrected credit reports so that you can begin your financial fresh start. Erin provides this service to all of her clients, for no extra charge.

Who Can File For Bankruptcy In Texas

People and corporations can file bankruptcy in Texas. You must live or have your principal assets in the Western District of Texas for 90 days before you can file bankruptcy here. Erin can file bankruptcy cases in all the bankruptcy courts in Texas but generally limits her practice to Central Texas bankruptcy filings. However, since her office and the bankruptcy courts are now all virtual due to the Pandemic, she can file cases in any bankruptcy court in Texas.

Choosing The Wrong Type Of Bankruptcy

How To File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Without a Lawyer TX Part 2

There are two different consumer bankruptcy options: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Which one is best for you depends on how much you make, whether you can pass the Chapter 7 means test, the types of debts you owe, and whether you have significant assets that you want to protect. A bankruptcy attorney can help you weigh your options and choose the right one to improve your financial situation.

Information For Debtors Without Attorney Representation


Individuals can file bankruptcy without an attorney, which is called filing pro se. However, seeking the advice of a qualified attorney is strongly recommended because bankruptcy has long-term financial and legal outcomes. We strongly recommend you watch the following videos and review written instructions under this link. This information will provide you with a better understanding of the bankruptcy process, the different chapters under which a bankruptcy case may be filed and can assist you in determining if this is the best option for you.

Filing personal bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 takes careful preparation and understanding of legal issues. Misunderstandings of the law or making mistakes in the process can affect your rights. Court employees and bankruptcy judges are prohibited by law from offering legal advice.

The following is a list of ways your lawyer can help you with your case.

  • Advise you on whether to file a bankruptcy petition.
  • Advise you under which chapter to file.
  • Advise you on whether your debts can be discharged.
  • Advise you on whether or not you will be able to keep your home, car, or other property after you file.
  • Advise of the tax consequences of filing.
  • Advise you on whether you should continue to pay creditors.
  • Explain bankruptcy law and procedures to you.
  • Help you complete and file forms.
  • Assist you with most aspects of your bankruptcy case.

Social Security Card

Can I Keep My Property After Filing For Bankruptcy

Texas and Federal exemption laws allow virtually all debtor to retain all their assets. Although exemption law is complicated and varies from state to state, a brief summary of Texas and Federal exemption law is as follows:

  • Automobiles and other motor vehicles You can retain your vehicle as long as you continue to make the payments on that vehicle. However, many of our clients opt to purchase a replacement vehicle after their bankruptcy discharge thereby obtaining more reliable transportation and helping improve their credit.
  • Homestead Texas has one of the most generous homestead laws of all fifty states. You can retain your home in the city, no matter how much it is worth if it is on ten acres or less. You can retain your home in the country if it is on less than 100 acres if you are a single person and 200 acres or less if you are a member of a family.
  • Retirement accounts Retirement accounts, such as IRAs and 401s, are exempt as long as they are valued at $1 million or less. Obviously, this large limit allows virtually all Texans to retain all their retirement when they file a bankruptcy case.
  • Personal property In Texas, you can keep all of the contents of your home as long as they are worth less than $50,000.00 if you are single and $100,000 if you are a member of a family. You are required to list all the assets that you own, under penalty of perjury, but these large limits allow virtually all honest debtors to retain all their assets as exempt.

You Will Not Lose Everything: Exempt Assets Are Protected From Creditors

Exempt assets are protected from your creditors which, in turn, means you get to keep them. In contrast, nonexempt assets can be sold by your bankruptcy trustee to pay your creditors.

The type of exemptions you qualify for are determined by state law. There are some unusual and very specific rules to determine which state law you must use to determine exemptions. However, I am not going to bore you with such a minuscule and technical area of the law today.

Bottom line: If you have moved from one state to another in the last two years, you need to speak to an experienced bankruptcy attorney where you live. They will help you identify which states law you need to look at when determining your exemptions.

Since chapter 7 bankruptcy exemptions vary from state to state, some states have very generous exemptions. Others are stricter about which of your assets are protected from creditors.

Skipping Mandatory Credit Counseling Classes

How to File for Bankruptcy Without an Attorney (with Pictures)

There are two sets of bankruptcy-related credit counseling classes you have to complete:

  • Pre-filing credit counseling within 6 months before your petition is filed
  • Post-filing financial education, completed after your petition is filed, but before your debts are discharged

If you skip either of these steps, your bankruptcy could be delayed or dismissed, forcing you to start over. Your attorney can help you sign up for counseling and provide proof of completion to the court.

Filing For Bankruptcy Yourself

You don’t have an attorney to file for bankruptcy. But it isn’t always a good idea to go it your own, either. Whether it would be in your best interest to hire a lawyer typically depends on:

  • whether you can afford an attorney, and
  • how comfortable you are with researching the necessary legal information and representing yourself.

In many cases, if you have little or no income or property, you might be able to file a successful Chapter 7 bankruptcy on your own. The instructions on the official bankruptcy forms are straightforward, which makes them relatively simple to complete. However, the forms don’t explain what will happen in your case.

Entities That Cannot Be Debtors

The section of the Bankruptcy code that governs which entities are permitted to file a bankruptcy petition is 11 U.S.C. § 109. Banks and other deposit institutions, insurance companies, railroads, and certain other financial institutions and entities regulated by the federal and state governments, and Private and Personal Trusts, except Statutory Business Trusts, as permitted by some States, cannot be a debtor under the Bankruptcy Code. Instead, special state and federal laws govern the liquidation or reorganization of these companies. In the U.S. context at least, it is incorrect to refer to a bank or insurer as being “bankrupt”. The terms “insolvent”, “in liquidation”, or “in receivership” would be appropriate under some circumstances.

Forms Necessary For Filing An Emergency Bankruptcy Petition

The first thing that you should do is double-check with the courts to make sure you have all the necessary forms you need to file your emergency bankruptcy petition. The forms required are Form 1 , a Form 21 , Form 201B , and a Verification of Creditor Matrix and Creditor Matrix. In some cases, an Order Dismissing Chapter 7 Case will also be required.

According to U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Western District of Texas, for an emergency Chapter 13 filing, a filing fee of $281 is also required, or an application for the fee to be paid in installments, or an application for a fee waiver. For an emergency Chapter 7 filing, the fee is $306. You will also need to file a certification of credit counseling. If you have not received credit counseling, you will have to file a motion either exempting you from credit counseling or explaining why you did not receive it.

Why Hire A Bankruptcy Lawyer

How to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Without a Lawyer TX Part 3

At the Malaise Law Firm, we understand the questions and concerns you will have if you are considering filing for bankruptcy. We know that it appears complex and the ideas of Chapter 7, Chapter 11 and Chapter 13 may appear foreign and overwhelming. There, are, however many things that you can do to help you. By closely working with your case, and giving you the undivided personal attention that you deserve, you can breathe easier knowing that you are dealing with someone devoted to getting you to the optimum outcome. No matter if you are concerned with credit card debt or life after bankruptcy, we will be here to help you.

If you are currently considering filing for bankruptcy, today.

Filing For Bankruptcy In Texas Without A Lawyer

Filing For Bankruptcy In Texas Without A Lawyer. How to file bankruptcy without a lawyer? Application to pay filing fee in installments (note:

The trustee is also the person that will be asking you questions at your 341 meeting. There are so many factors that weigh on an important decision like filing a bankruptcy case on your own, and much depends on the complexity of the case. The information here is sourced well and enriched with great visual photo and video illustrations. Unlike a business bankruptcy, an individual debtor doesn’t need an attorney to file for bankruptcy relief. Get more information filing bankruptcy in texas without a lawyer.

When Is It Bad To Not Hire A Bankruptcy Attorney

Certain bankruptcy cases are very complex to be handled by an individual. For instance, if your average income is above the median state-level or if you own a business, things might get hot in the court.

If you have creditors claiming against you or have an ample amount of assets, it is advisable not to file a chapter 7 bankruptcy case on your own. Instead, look for low-income bankruptcy lawyers as the court may seize your assets.

Take Bankruptcy Course 2

Every bankruptcy filer has to take a course on financial management after their case is filed. Itâs similar to the course you took before you went to the court to file your bankruptcy forms. This course is intended to teach you how to budget and use your money after your case is filed. 

Of course, many folks find themselves filing bankruptcy on account of something entirely outside of their control. Still, everyone who wants to get their debts discharged has to take the course. Even an experienced bankruptcy attorney can’t help you get around it. 

As with the first course, itâs important to use an approved provider. Once done, youâll receive a certificate of completion youâll need to submit to the bankruptcy court.

What Is A Chapter 7

How to File for Bankruptcy Without an Attorney (with Pictures)

Chapter 7 is known as straight bankruptcy or liquidation. In a Chapter 7, a list of all of your assets and debts is filed with the bankruptcy court. The court will appoint a trustee to represent the interests of your creditors and can sell your property to pay debts. In most Chapter 7 cases, however, your property will be exempt by law, and cant be sold to satisfy creditors claims. When your chapter 7 case is over , most of your debts will be erased. If you filed under Chapter 7 and your debts were discharged, you must wait 8 years before filing another Chapter 7.

Do I Qualify For Bankruptcy Bankruptcy Means Test Standards For Harris County

You may be surprised to learn that whether you can file for bankruptcy can come down to which state and county you live in.

Which type of bankruptcy you qualify for depends, in part, on whether your annual income is more or less than the Texas median income. Before looking at numbers and formulas, however, you should be familiar with the two main types of personal bankruptcy:

Filing For Bankruptcy You Must List All Of Your Assets

Basically, whenever you file bankruptcy, you are required to list ALL of your assets.

Your assets include the following:

  • Your house
  • Financial assets
  • Other tangible items

Your assets may also include some things that are easily forgotten like bank accounts, life insurance, inheritance, and potential lawsuits.

A good bankruptcy attorney will give you some type of workbook to help you remember your assets. Take your time when filing this workbook out.

Forgetting to list an asset can cause you to lose that asset. Once you have listed all of your assets, your bankruptcy attorney will look at exemptions to determine if your assets are exempt.

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

These forms, collectively are referred to as the schedules and ask you to describe your current financial status and recent financial transactions . Whether you’re filing for chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy It is possible to file bankruptcy without an attorney, and chapter 13 cases present even more challenges for pro se filers than chapter 7 cases. Filing without an attorney the information on this page is provided for individuals filing bankruptcy without attorney representation . The trustee is also the person that will be asking you questions at your 341 meeting. Whether filing on your own will make sense will likely depend on: The trustee will be your primary point of contact during your texas bankruptcy, especially if you’re filing without a bankruptcy lawyer. You may lose property or other rights if you do not know the law. Filing bankruptcy without the help of an attorney can be even more confusing and stressful, and mistakes can be costly. filing bankruptcy immediately stops all of your creditors from seeking to collect debts from you, at least until your debts are sorted out according to the law. Bankruptcy filing checklists for chapter 7, 11, 12, and 13; 3 minute read ⢠upsolve is a nonprofit tool that helps you file bankruptcy for free. However, before you file for bankruptcy in texas, contact an experienced texas bankruptcy attorney to discuss your case and whether filing for bankruptcy is your best option.

What Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

How to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Without a Lawyer TX Part 4

Chapter 7 is known as the liquidation bankruptcy because it discharges most of your unsecured debt. That includes , medical bills and personal loans.

Its the quickest, simplest and most common type of bankruptcy. According to the American Bankruptcy Institute , 63% of the 774,940 bankruptcy cases filed in 2019, were Chapter 7.

An even more encouraging bankruptcy statistic: 94.3% of Chapter 7 filings had their debts discharged, meaning forgiven.

You must pass a means test to qualify for Chapter 7 filing. The bankruptcy means test examines financial records, including income, expenses, secured and unsecured debt to determine if your disposable income is below the median income for your state. The means test income level varies from state to state.

You might be forced to sell any non-exempt assets, though several online sites claim that 96% of Chapter 7 filings are no asset cases, meaning there is not enough equity or value in the property for a trustee to sell it and pay off creditors.

Generally, the Chapter 7 process can be completed in four to six months.

Can I File For Bankruptcy Without An Attorney

While you are not legally required to have a lawyer, the filing process can involve complex legal issues. It’s also emotionally exhausting especially when you are all by yourself. An experienced and supportive lawyer can make a substantial difference in your experience . Call or text DebtStoppers today at 469-646-0750 to schedule a free debt analysis with one of our skilled Texas attorneys.

We Are Here To Help You

Within the 2005 legal guidelines, customers have to choose credit score guidance previous to submitting a new individual bankruptcy request. Consumers are also subjected to an easy method check, to determine which kind associated with individual bankruptcy to data file. Within a Page 13 individual bankruptcy, your filer experiences a new fiscal reorganization overseen from the courtroom as well as develops an idea to settle their debt in order to shield specific assets, for example the estate. So that as associated with 2005, your borrower ought to create a credit card debt operations study course as well as data file a new certification associated with end while using the courtroom.

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Collect Your Texas Bankruptcy Documents

Your first step should be to collect the documents youâll need during the bankruptcy process. Some documents, like your paycheck stubs, medical bills, collection letters you have received from creditors, and a recent copy of your credit report will be useful when filling out your bankruptcy forms.

Other documents, like the tax returns you filed in the 2 years before filing bankruptcy will need to be submitted to the bankruptcy trustee before your meeting of creditors. If youâre closing a bank account before filing your bankruptcy, make sure you get a complete copy of your bank statements for the 6 months before the account is closed. Your bankruptcy trustee may want to review your statements, and once an account is closed, it can be time consuming and even expensive to get them from the bank. 

Try to be as organized as possible when collecting the documents for your Texas bankruptcy. It may take you a while to collect everything but when youâre ready to take the next step, youâll feel more prepared. 


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