When you start the process of filing for bankruptcy, you are making the claim that you do not have the money you need to pay your bills. The reasoning behind the lack of funds, does not play any role in the court’s decision to accept your petition. Use the tips below to help you through this difficult and confusing process.
Many people find that they must file for bankruptcy protection because they have more debt than they can afford to repay. If you have unmanageable debt, you need to familiarize yourself with regional bankruptcy laws. Each state has its own laws regarding personal bankruptcy. In some states, your home is protected, while in others it is not. Make sure you know the laws where you live before you file.
Keep your debts to a minimum prior to filing. If you are planning on filing for bankruptcy, don’t run up your debts. Your recent history will be checked by judges and creditors, and if it is deemed that you are trying to cheat the system, you may not be able to wipe out those debts. You will be viewed most favorably, if you can demonstrate that you have changed your spending habits.
Trying to exclude family members you owe money to before filing for personal bankruptcy can get you into serious hot water. The court will look into who you pay-off as far as a year back, and if they find you showing favor to family over other creditors, they could invalidate your filing completely.
Know what debts can be forgiven. You may hear that you have to pay a certain debt, and that it cannot be discharged, but that information will usually be coming from a bill collector. Student loans and child support and a few other debts cannot be discharged, but most others can.
Honesty may never have been as important as it will be when going through personal bankruptcy. Hiding income or assets may result in a dismissal from the court. It could also mean that you will be barred from ever having the opportunity to file for bankruptcy any time in the future.
Evaluate your consultation with any lawyer by the way he or she handled the consult. Consider the length of your consult. If it lasted less than 15 minutes or it was with an assistant rather than an actual lawyer conducting the consult, this could signal that lawyer is probably not the best choice. You want someone that takes the time to handle your case personally, and you want to get your money’s worth. You should also shy away from those lawyers who pressure you with phone calls or try convincing you immediately after a consultation by getting pushy.
Take note of any tip you found to be especially helpful here. Print a copy to keep on your desk as you prepare to file for personal bankruptcy. This will make it easy to benefit the most from the information learned here. It is the details that are missed that may hurt you the most, so be sure to be careful when filing.