Knowing the details of the bankruptcy process is essential for a successful filing. Bankruptcy is a true lifesaver for individuals and families struggling financially, and it grants a fresh start and a new positive outlook on life. To perform everything correctly, the first step should always be to hire an experienced debt lawyer in San Diego and enlist their professional assistance.
What should I do to file for bankruptcy?
While many who are facing mounting debt are convinced that bankruptcy is an overwhelming and demanding process, it can actually go completely smoothly if you consult the right experts. Bankruptcy is an amazing opportunity for you to regain the financial freedom you’ve lost through debt, but you should do a bit of research to ensure you’re doing everything correctly. Sure, expert lawyers will guide you through all the steps, but why not get an idea of what is in store for you?
Collecting the necessary documentation
Before beginning your bankruptcy, you have to collect various documents regarding your income, debt, and assets, including real estate appraisals, balances owed on your real property, payoff statements for your vehicles, vehicle registration and proof of insurance, retirement and savings accounts, tax returns and bank statements. Having ample proof of your income, debt, and spending is essential for successfully filing bankruptcy and getting those pesky creditors out of your life.
Attending credit counseling
Attending credit counseling is a requirement before filing bankruptcy in San Diego, the rest of California and even the entire country. First, you have to choose an approved provider and take this course either in person, via phone, or online. Most often the online option is selected because it allows the course to be completed 24 hours a day making it very convenient.
Don’t get discouraged – the course is really short and easy, and you’ll have no trouble getting through it. Most of the step by step course is focused on your monthly spending and budgeting. Also, you’ll get plenty of useful advice on how to handle your finances and taking on debt going forward, which will help you achieve financial stability and put this chapter behind you.
The fee for the course varies among the companies that offer credit counseling. Typically you will pay $50.00 or less to the credit counseling agency.
After finishing, you’ll receive a Certificate of Completion that you need to submit to the bankruptcy court alongside all the other required documents.
Preparing the bankruptcy forms
There are several forms you have to complete to file bankruptcy. Navigating them alone is honestly a bit overwhelming for most. Among the required information is a complete itemization of all of your assets and their value, application of bankruptcy laws to protect your property, a detailed list of all creditors you owe money, calculating your income and budget and determining whether you need to complete and if you pass the means test. However, with a bit of perseverance, you can get through the process.
If you feel overwhelmed, it might be time to seek the help of a trusted lawyer who will prepare all of the bankruptcy forms for you. If you decide to forge alone, you can find an instruction manual online. But figuring out how to use and apply the proper law may prove a challenge. Ultimately protecting your property is of utmost importance so it’s always advisable to have experienced lawyers by your side when filing bankruptcy.
Paying your fees & filing the forms
Bankruptcy involves some fees too. For example, the court charges a $338 fee for filing Chapter 7, and $313 for filing Chapter 13. Also, Chapter 7 allows you to apply for a fee waiver, in case you don’t have the means to pay these fees before bankruptcy. First you need to submit an application for approval of your fee waiver in addition to all of the other required bankruptcy forms.
Attending the 341 meeting
Finally, you have to attend the 341 meeting, which is a meeting between your creditors, your trustee and you. Your attorney will attend this meeting as well unless you filed the bankruptcy alone. We know, who would want to do this alone, right? The bankruptcy trustee will ask you a series of questions after checking your identification and confirming your social security number. Sometimes your creditors ask questions of you as well.
Another positive reason to hire a lawyer is he or she will make this meeting easy, stress-free. Who knows, it might turn out to be fun watching your creditors squirm or even stay silent as your ace attorney represents you with flying colors. Let’s see how they like the taste of their own medicine.
Taking a second bankruptcy course
Once you file your bankruptcy, it’s time to take a second round of debtor education classes. You can also choose your preferred way to take it – in-person, online or via phone, and it takes less than a couple hours. Again, the course is short, sweet, and puts you on the right path to stay out of debt. You’ll better understand how you got into debt, and you’ll get a fresh perspective on the way you spend money. We can all use some guidance making a budget and sticking with it!
Who is the leading debt lawyer in San Diego?
The process of filing for bankruptcy can be complex, but it will also be the best financial move of your life! With the help of an excellent bankruptcy attorney who truly cares about clients and really understands the laws and system, the process won’t be difficult. However, before actually starting, you should first find out what the three most common types of bankruptcy are, inquire about the most important things to know before filing bankruptcy, and finally start adequately preparing to file bankruptcy. Only after thoroughly researching all your bankruptcy options will you feel confident you are ready to file and reclaim your freedom from debt.
This is where it gets tricky, and why you should consider enlisting the help of reputable bankruptcy attorneys from San Diego. Before selecting an attorney, confirm he or she has the knowledge and experience needed for your case to be smooth. Most importantly, make sure you feel comfortable with your attorney. Luckily, you can always rely on Bankruptcy Law Offices of Mark L. Miller. We are a collection of experienced and qualified debt lawyers who will ensure a smooth and fruitful bankruptcy. You can find our offices near the Casa Del Rey Moro African Museum, so feel free to come in for a free consultation. Give us a call today!