If mounting debt has become too overwhelming for you to manage, you may be eligible to file for bankruptcy. Doing so can help you get much of your debt erased and make it possible for you to get a fresh financial start. Here are five tips to help you navigate filing for bankruptcy.
Don’t Wait for Things to Get Worse
You shouldn’t wait until your financial situation gets worse to declare bankruptcy if you’re already finding it impossible to pay your bills. All of your debt might not be dismissed when you file for bankruptcy, and having even more of it can result in additional financial hardship. Barring a windfall, your mounting debt will likely grow bigger if you’re unable to repay it quickly, and declaring bankruptcy sooner can save you from this problem.
Complete Required Classes
The bankruptcy court may require you to complete a credit counseling program before you file as well as a post-filing debtor education course. Most classes can be completed for a small fee and issue certificates upon completion. You’ll need to show these certificates to the court as proof of your attendance. If you’re not able to attend a class in person, you may be able to complete a program online.
Hire an Attorney
A bankruptcy attorney like McElrath Law or someone similar can help you through the process and inform you of all the bankruptcy eligibility requirements. You’ll be advised on the appropriate bankruptcy chapter that you should be filing under and receive assistance with submitting your bankruptcy petition to the court. Your attorney may also be able to work out a deal with your lenders during your 341 meeting of creditors.
Be Honest about All Income and Assets
You’ll need to list all your household income and assets when you file for bankruptcy. According to Bankrate.com, this includes any income that you receive from side jobs as well as any vehicles or property that you own. Omitting information about your income and assets to try to fit bankruptcy eligibility requirements is considered fraud and could result in serious financial and legal consequences.
Double-Check Your Application
Errors in your application can slow the filing process and possibly result in your application being rejected. Themocracy.Com states that it’s important to check for spelling and calculation errors before submitting the petition. You should also make sure that all information is written in the right places and all the required fields on your application have been filled. Your attorney can check over your application for errors as well.
Filing for bankruptcy can be a difficult choice, but you can make the process smoother by following the right steps. With some extra knowledge and help from your attorney, you’ll have less difficulty going through each phase.