The Bankruptcy Process

The steps required to successfully file for bankruptcy can be an easier undertaking than you think with the right team of bankruptcy attorneys on your side. At Todd Cushner & Associates, our bankruptcy litigation experts will navigate you through this process, diligently working to achieve the results you deserve. In this article, we are going to walk you through some of the most important aspects of the bankruptcy process.

The Bankruptcy Code

Article I, Section 8, of the United States Constitution authorizes Congress to enact “uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies.” Under this grant of authority, Congress enacted the “Bankruptcy Code” in 1978. The Bankruptcy Code, which is codified as title 11 of the United States Code, has been amended several times since its enactment. It is the uniform federal law that governs all bankruptcy cases.

The procedural aspects of the bankruptcy process are governed by the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure (often called the “Bankruptcy Rules”) and local rules of each bankruptcy court. The Bankruptcy Rules contain a set of official forms for use in bankruptcy cases. The Bankruptcy Code and Bankruptcy Rules (and local rules) set forth the formal legal procedures for dealing with the debt problems of individuals and businesses.

United States Courts

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Credit Counseling and Filing Your Petition

Before filing for bankruptcy, you will need to complete two credit counseling sessions with credit counselors verified by the US Department of Justice. We can provide you with pre-filing bankruptcy counseling to help ensure this part of the process runs smoothly and efficiently. Once the credit counseling is finished, you will be able to file your bankruptcy petition. And because creditors are notified about your filing, they can no longer pursue their collection efforts. This means an end to creditor harassment and it gives you the ability to begin your path toward financial stability.

Filing Your Financial Information

During this part of the bankruptcy process, we will help you file your financial information pertaining to income, assets, expenses, and debts. This is accomplished within 15 days of filing your bankruptcy petition. During this stage, a repayment plan will also be submitted if you are filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Statement of Intention

The next step requires you to file a Statement of Intention, informing the court on which assets and/or debts you want to hold on to. Our bankruptcy attorneys will work with you to help ensure you keep any necessary assets such as your car or other properties.

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Meeting of Creditors

Within 45 days after filing for bankruptcy, you will testify to verify all of the previous information you have provided to the court. As long as the financial information you provided was accurate, you can proceed to the final step.

Discharging Your Debt

During this final step of the bankruptcy filing process, all of your eligible debts will be discharged. In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the discharge usually occurs in under 6 months. In Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the timeline of your discharge is determined by the length and terms of your repayment plan.

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