Bankruptcy can have serious consequences. It can be complicated and involve dealings with creditors and the bankruptcy court. You could experience major changes in your daily life. You could lose your property and credit rating by filing for bankruptcy.
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This is an extremely stressful situation, and one you probably didn’t want to find yourself in. You can make the situation easier by hiring a qualified bankruptcy attorney and organizing your financial information.
What paperwork do I need to file bankruptcy?
The checklist below will help you gather all the necessary paperwork for an attorney to give you the best advice and representation. This checklist is a helpful tool that can help you organize and collect the necessary paperwork prior to or during bankruptcy.
You should start collecting your financial records. These documents will help you decide which type of bankruptcy suits you best. Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be the best option if you have regular income. This could have important implications as Chapter 13 bankruptcy will allow you to retain your property and repay your debts over the course of time. Financial records include:
- Recent bank statements
- All creditor’s most recent bills
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Recent payment coupons for vehicle leases or purchases, real estate, student loans and other financial obligations
- Invoices and bills for purchases made in the past year
- Legal Records
You should disclose any legal history and pending litigation concerning you to your attorney. You will need to consider your financial situation when deciding which bankruptcy option is best for you. You will also need to consider whether you are currently in litigation or if you have a court order. This will affect how much money you can pay your creditors.
These legal records are:
- Files from any previous litigation, including any judgments against you
- Files of previous attorneys
- Any court order or divorce decree that requires you to support your children or pay maintenance
- Additional Documents
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Below is a list of your assets and the information you will need to prove your income. It is important to have a clear and thorough list of all your assets in order to prove that you have a fixed income. This can prove you are able to repay your debts over time, or show that you have no income.
Cancelled checks for expenses you are unable to document
- All correspondence you send to creditors or about creditors, including threat letters
- All insurance policies
- Tax returns for the past three years
- Vehicle titles
- Your mortgage or lease
You have any promissory notes?
- Other documents related to debts you owe others
- Any evidence that someone owes money to you
- All lawsuits that you have been served
- For Chapter 7 Filing, You Will Need To Have The Documents
Before you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, there are many documents that you will need. The specific documents you need will vary depending on the type of case you have and where you file it, but you will need the following to file your petition.
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- Your tax returns
- Pay stubs
- Appraisals of your jewelry and other exempt assets
- Your car titles
- Documentation proving child support/alimony obligations
- Statements from banks
- You can prove that you have taken credit counseling