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How To File Bankruptcy In Washington State

Take Bankruptcy Course 2

How do I file for Bankruptcy in Seattle, Washington?

After mailing your documents to your Chapter 7 trustee, and before your required hearing, is the ideal time to complete your second credit counseling course. The timing is good because when filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Washington, the certificate of completion needs to be filed with the court within 60 days of your scheduled 341 hearing. By completing the second course sooner rather than later, you are less likely to forget to do so and if you need to file the certificate yourself , there is a good chance that you can file it with the court on the date of your 341 hearing, saving yourself an extra trip later. Just be certain to file it with the clerk just like your original bankruptcy documents. It will not be sufficient to hand the certificate to your Chapter 7 trustee at the hearing along with other paperwork.

Go To Court To File Your Forms

After you have completed and printed all forms and dealt with your filing fee, it is time to go to court to file you documents and officially begin your Chapter 7 in Washington. If you are working with an attorney, they will file the forms on your behalf, usually through an electronic filing system. If you are filing pro se, it is best to go in person rather than send someone else in case there is a quick correction to make or an additional signature needed. Here again, it is a great idea to reach out to the court clerk in advance to make certain you are filing at the proper location and double check the hours of operation. If you are filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Washingtonâs Eastern District, you can also request to join the Debtor Electronic Bankruptcy Noticing system for any subsequent notices or orders.

Bankruptcy Forms For Washington

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Districts:Western District of Washington, Eastern District of Washington

To file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Washington, you have to complete a packet of about 24 forms. You will be expected to describe everything you make, spend, owe, and own in the free bankruptcy forms for Washington.

Some of the questions may seem bizarre – âwait, the Court wants to know how much my pet dog can be sold for?â Thatâs ok. Just be sure to answer every question as best you can. The Court is asking these questions because they want to understand your entire financial picture. In the article, weâll explain each of these forms for Washington and weâll provide links to download each form for free.

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Divorce Or Bankruptcy: What To File First

Goldberg Jones Divorce

Debt is an unfortunate part of many of our lives. And our marriages. Loans, credit card bills, medical expenses, and more add up quickly. Before long, were struggling to stay afloat. In many cases, filing for bankruptcy is the best available option. But how does it impact divorce?

The short answer is that it complicates divorce in a variety of ways. A big question that often arises in this situation is when to declare bankruptcy? Should you file before divorce proceedings, wait until things are wrapped up, or can the two coincide?

If You Agree To Pay A Debt Can You File For Bankruptcy After The Divorce Is Final

How to File Bankruptcy in Washington

Some people may take on all of the debt in the divorce settlement, planning to file bankruptcy after the fact. They hope this will get rid of unsecured obligations. While that may sound like a sensible solution if youre in a deep financial hole, it presents problems.

Even if you take on all the shared debt in the divorce settlement then file bankruptcy, creditors can still go after your ex. Theyre not bankrupt after all and still remain on those documents. If they want, they can then come after you through a hold harmless clause.

A hold harmless clause is a provision where if a creditor comes after you or your ex for money both of you owefor example, a mortgage on a house or shared credit card debtbut that one of you takes responsibility for in the divorce, the party relieved of the burden can seek restitution.

In an instance like this, waiting to file bankruptcy until after divorce can backfire. You went through all the rigmarole, dealt with all of the headaches and consequences, and still damaged your credit. On top of all of that, you ultimately didnt accomplish much of anything.

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Can They Affect Divorce Costs?

You may also want to take into account the cost of paperwork when filing for bankruptcy. Joint and individual filings costs are the same, so it may be in your best interest for you and your spouse to file together while still married. In this way, you can save money in the long run.

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Collect Your Washington Bankruptcy Documents

The first step in considering a Washington bankruptcy is to gather all of the documents you will need to verify you are eligible to file and to fill out the necessary forms. For this, you will need to have any and all information regarding your income for the past 6 months, including pay stubs and any other proof of income. You should also have ready the past two years of tax returns and bank statements for the past few months for all accounts. You should also gather any documents regarding your assets, like the deed to your house , and your car title You also want to make certain you have a complete list of all of your debts. It can be difficult to recall all of them and/or know which addresses to use, so we recommend that you get a copy of your credit report to assist. You can get a free copy on AnnualCreditReport.com, which can help insure that you list all creditors and collection agencies you owe money to.

What Happens If You File Bankruptcy In Washington State

The means test measures your income and debt. The outcome will determine which chapter youll need to file to discharge debt. Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If your household income is lower than the median income of your state, you can receive a discharge in a Chapter 7 case.

As of April 16, 2020, filers in the Eastern District can pay their fees online. If you feel that you cannot afford this fee, it is possible to request a fee waiver with the court.

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What Property Can I Keep

In a Chapter 7 case in Washington, you can keep all property which the law says is exempt from the claims of creditors. It is important to check the exemptions that are available in the state where you live. In some states, you are given a choice when you file bankruptcy between using either the state exemptions or using the federal bankruptcy exemptions. However, even in an opt-out state, you may use a special federal bankruptcy exemption that protects retirement funds in pension plans and individual retirement accounts .

In Washington State you are allowed to use the federal bankruptcy exemptions, they include:

  • $20,200 in equity in your home
  • $3,225 in equity in your car $525 per item in any household goods up to a total of $10,775
  • $2,025 in things you need for your job
  • $1,075 in any property, plus part of the unused exemption in your home, up to $10,125
  • Your right to receive certain benefits such as Social Security, unemployment compensation, veterans benefits public assistance, and pensionsregardless of the amount

The amounts ofthe exemptions are doubled when a married couple files together: Again, you may be required to use state exemptions which may be more or less generous than the federal exemptions.

Do I Still Owe Secured Debts After Bankruptcy

Chapter 7 Verses Chapter 13 Bankruptcy – Washington State Bankruptcy

Yes and No. The term secured debt applies when you give the lender a mortgage deed of trust or lien on property as collateral for a loan. The most common types of secured debts are home mortgages and car loans. The treatment of secured debts after bankruptcy can be confusing.

Bankruptcy cancels your personal legal obligation to pay a debt, even a secured debt. This means the secured creditor cant sue you after a bankruptcy to collect the money you owe. But, and this is a big but, the creditor can still take back their collateral if you dont pay the debt. For example, if you are behind on a car loan or home mortgage, the creditor can ask the bankruptcy court for permission to repossess your car or foreclose on your home. Or the creditor can just wait until your bankruptcy is over and then do so. Although a secured creditor cant sue you if you dont pay, that creditor can usually take back the collateral.

For this reason, if you want to keep property that is collateral for a secured debt, you will need to catch up on the payments and continue to make them during and after bankruptcy, keep any required insurance, and you may have to reaffirm the loan.

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Mall Owner Washington Prime Files For Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection

  • Mall owner Washington Prime Group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Sunday after the Covid-19 pandemic forced it to temporarily close some of its roughly 100 shopping centers across the United States and businesses were unable to pay its rent.
  • The company’s estimated assets ranged from $1 billion to $10 billion as did its estimated liabilities, according to a filing made in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas.
  • The company was in talks for roughly $100 million of so-called debtor-in-possession financing to aid operations during bankruptcy proceedings, Reuters reported earlier on Sunday.

In this article

Mall owner Washington Prime Group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Sunday after the Covid-19 pandemic forced it to temporarily close some of its roughly 100 shopping centers across the United States and businesses were unable to pay its rent.

The company’s estimated assets ranged from $1 billion to $10 billion as did its estimated liabilities, according to a filing made in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas.

Reuters was the first to report that the Columbus, Ohio-based company, formed in 2014 following a spin-off from mall giant Simon Property Group Inc, was preparing to seek bankruptcy protection.

The company was in talks for roughly $100 million of so-called debtor-in-possession financing to aid operations during bankruptcy proceedings, Reuters reported earlier on Sunday.

Can You File For Bankruptcy During A Divorce

Though you have options and many factors to consider when it comes to both bankruptcy and divorce, our attorneys usually advise tackling the financial matter first. Every situation is different, but in a general sense, getting that done and out of the way is the best idea.

In Washington, you have to file either before or after divorce. You cant file during the process. If youre in the process of ending your marriage and begin bankruptcy proceedings, you cant finalize the divorce.

You have to wait until the financial matter is settled and put to bed to make your split official.

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Can A Business File Bankruptcy

by Richard Symmes | Jul 30, 2017 | Bankruptcy, Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, Media & Press

Yes a business can file for bankruptcy, but a business owner will need to determine whether it will make sense to file a business bankruptcy, or deal with the debts on a personal level through a personal bankruptcy or debt settlement. A business is eligible to file Chapter 7 or Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a complete liquidation of the businesses assets and debts, but the catch is that a business does not get a discharge of debts. This differs from a personal chapter 7 case in which the individuals are usually given a discharge of debts that are eligible for a discharge. A Chapter 11 bankruptcy is a type of bankruptcy that allows a business to reorganize its debt in a payment plan. This type of bankruptcy is usually filed by high net work individuals or businesses who want to remain in open and figure out a way in which to pay their debts over time. Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases have many requirements and can be very expensive due to the complexity of the cases and requirements.

You can check out the audio conversation I had regarding whether a business can file bankruptcy that was live on 1150AM radio here: Does chapter 7 bankruptcy make sense to file for the business if no discharge is given?

Can Individuals file for bankruptcy to get out from business debts?

What happens if a business files chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I File Bankruptcy In Washington State?

Bankruptcy is can be both a stressful yet rewarding experience. Whether you lost your job, accrued significant medical bills or built up a debt you are struggling to pay-off, filing for Bankruptcy may be the solution you need to start anew, debt free. The decision to file for bankruptcy should be made only after determining that bankruptcy is the best way to deal with your financial problems. This webpage cannot explain every aspect of the bankruptcy process. If you still have questions after reading it, you should contact Chung, Malhas & Mantel PLLCs office to set up an appointment so he or an attorney with the firm may review your case in detail.

There have been many news reports suggesting that changes to the bankruptcy law passed by Congress in 2005 prevent many individuals from filing bankruptcy. It is true that these changes have made the process more complicated. But the basic right to file bankruptcy and most of the benefits of bankruptcy remain the same for most individuals.

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What Must I Do Before Filing Bankruptcy

You must receive budget and credit counseling from an approved credit counseling agency within 180 days before your bankruptcy case is filed. The agency will review possible options available to you in credit counseling and assist you in reviewing your budget. Different agencies provide the counseling in-person, by telephone, or over the Internet. If you decide to file bankruptcy, you must have a certificate from the agency showing that you received the counseling before your bankruptcy case was filed.

Most approved agencies charge between $40 $60 for the pre-filing counseling. However, the law requires approved agencies to provide bankruptcy counseling and the necessary certificates without considering an individuals ability to pay. If you can not afford the fee, you should ask the agency to provide the counseling free of charge or at a reduced fee.

If you decide to go ahead with bankruptcy, you should be very careful in choosing an agency for the required counseling. It is extremely difficult to sort out the good counseling agencies from the bad ones. Many agencies arelegitimate, but many are simply rip-offs. And being an approved agency for bankruptcy counseling is no guarantee that the agency is good. It is also important to understand that even good agencies wont be able to help you much if youre already too deep in financial tumble.

What Is The Statement Of Current Monthly Income For In A Washington Bankruptcy Case

This form determines whether youâre eligible to file for Chapter 7. And it has the most confusing name of any of the free bankruptcy forms for Washington. Despite its name, the Statement of Current Monthly Income is not asking for your current monthly income. Rather itâs asking for your average income and your spouseâsaverage income over the last 6 monthsbefore your filing date.

The Court wants to know about your income from all sources over the past 6 months, including employment, side-businesses, family contributions, and government benefits like SNAP or unemployment. If your average household income for the past 6 months is below themedian household income for families of your size, then great! – youâre eligible to file for Chapter 7. If youâve earned above the median income, you may be ineligible for Chapter 7. If youâre a disabled veteran or someone who owes primarily business debt, you can fill out theStatement of Exemption from Presumption of Abuseexplaining that you are still eligible for Chapter 7. But otherwise, if youâre over the median income, you must complete theChapter 7 Means Test Calculation. To be honest, that form is a beast. You should definitelyhire a lawyer if you need to complete that particular free bankruptcy form for Washington.

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Chapter 13 Bankruptcy In Washington

A Washington Chapter 13 bankruptcy case can help you prevent repossessions. It can also stop foreclosures to keep your cars and home. It can help you catch up on back alimony and child support while getting rid of back tax debt. Through a Washington Chapter 13 plan, you might also be able to lower your car payments and get rid of unsecured debts for pennies on the dollar.

A Chapter 13 plan generally takes five years to complete. However, some debtors may qualify for a three-year Chapter 13 plan. Many factors go into the calculation of a Chapter 13 plan, including your income, debts, expenses, and assets. If you have property that is not covered by exemptions, you can also protect assets in Chapter 13 from a bankruptcy auction.

Do you want more information about filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Washington? If so, check out our Guide to Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. You can also try our free Chapter 13 calculator to estimate what your payments might be if you file Chapter 13 in Washington.

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