Existing Client FAQ

Right After You File

Typically, your filing fee is due by noon on the date of your meeting with the trustee. If you cannot pay it by this time, please contact our office immediately.

Typically, your payments will start the month after you file for bankruptcy. You should receive an Order to Pay from the trustee that has your payment amount. Your payment is due by the 22nd of every month so that the trustee has time to process it before the end of the month. This does not mean that you must wait until the 22nd, however. You can make the payment any time between the 1st of the month and the 22nd of the month.

You will receive a letter, shortly after your case is filed, that includes the name of the trustee assigned to your case and the date and time of your meeting.

Meeting (341)

You will receive a letter, shortly after your case is filed, with the time and date of the meeting. Right now, due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, meetings are being held by phone and your letter will include that telephone number and access code.

Your meeting with the trustee will usually consist of a few standard questions under oath with your attorney present. Most meetings only take a few minutes. Most trustees require a few basic documents regarding identification and income prior to the meeting. We will help you get these documents to the trustee.

For a Ch. 7 bankruptcy, generally after you attend your meeting, you are just waiting for your discharge. This is typically a few months after the meeting. In rare cases, the trustee may require additional information after the meeting, and we will contact you to discuss this.

For a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, once you have attended your meeting, the trustee may confirm (i.e. approve) your plan after about a month if no objections are filed. If the trustee or a creditor files an objection, we will help you get the objection resolved.

If you miss your first trustee meeting, it will automatically be rescheduled for the following month. If you miss more than one meeting, your case can be dismissed. If you know you are unable to attend your meeting, please contact us ASAP.

When you file bankruptcy, your creditors are notified via mail and they are supposed to stop contacting you. If you have only recently filed, creditors may have not yet updated their system to stop contacting you. However, if this continues, please let us know so that we can contact the creditor and get it stopped.

Classes

There are two classes that must be completed in every bankruptcy case. One is done before your case is filed and one is done after. If you have only done one class, then you still have a second class that must be done. Contact us if you need information on your second class.

If you have filed for bankruptcy with us, then you will have already paid for your second course when you paid your filing fee, so there is no need to pay any other company for the same thing. If you did not file with us but have retained us to represent you, please contact our office before paying for any other courses as ours may be cheaper.

You must complete your second class before you receive a discharge. Ideally, you should complete this as soon after your case is filed as you can. If you have forgotten or lost the information, call us and we will work with you to make sure you are able to complete the course before you get your discharge.

During bankruptcy (after your meeting) 

Chapter 7

A reaffirmation agreement is paperwork from one of your creditors that allows you to keep debts like home mortgages and vehicle loans in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. We will work with you and your creditors to make sure that any reaffirmation agreements are complete and filed with the court.

The second course must be completed before you can receive your discharge. We recommend taking the second course as soon as you can after your case is filed to make sure that it is done on time.

Yes, any bills that were owed before you filed may be added in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. However, the courts charge a small fee to add bills after the petition is filed. We will work with you to make sure that any missing bills are added while trying to minimize the cost to you.

If your case was only recently filed, it is likely that the creditor may not have received notice yet. However, if it continues, please let us know so that we can contact the creditor and put a stop to it.

If your refund was taken before you filed, then no. If your refund was taken after you filed, then we may be able to get it back, but this is something you will want to discuss with us.

Chapter 13

Payments & Changes to Your Bankruptcy 

Call our office ASAP. Our attorneys may be able to temporarily lower your payments or there may be other options that we can discuss with you.

Yes! You will receive a lot of important information regarding your bankruptcy via mail, so we need to have your current address. Once you notify us, we will let the court and the trustee know so that all mail is directed to your new address. We also need to be able to get ahold of you by phone.

Yes! We will need to update your budget to reflect any changes to your income. If you are on payroll-deduction, we will also need to update your employer with the court and the trustee so an order to pay can be sent to your new employer.

We may be able to reduce or even stop bankruptcy payments while you search for a new job or wait for unemployment payments. However, we can’t do this until you let us know so be sure to call us ASAP if you’ve lost your job.

Yes, but you will need to discuss options with us. Sometimes, paperwork must be filed with the court before you can get a replacement vehicle. We are happy to guide you through this process.

It depends on your case. Please call us and we can discuss your options with you.

Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Call us and we can let you know if it is a bill that can be added or if we need to notify your creditor of the bankruptcy.

Let us know right away. There is usually paperwork that needs to be filed before things like homes, land, or vehicles (even if you own them outright) can be sold and we can help you with that process.

Yes, but there are some limitations on it. If you think you will have enough money to pay off your bankruptcy, let us know right away so that we can get a payoff from the trustee.

Paperwork & Letters 

 If you receive a letter about your bankruptcy and are concerned or have questions, give us a call and our paralegal or one of the attorneys can review it with you. Please make sure you have a copy of the letter with you when you call.

Usually, it does not mean that you are dismissed right away but rather that there is a problem that needs to be fixed. Call us at your earliest convenience and we can help you fix the problem.

Classes 

The second course must be completed before you can receive your discharge. We recommend taking the second course as soon as you can after your case is filed to make sure that it is done on time.

If your case was only recently filed, it is likely that the creditor may not have received notice yet. However, if it continues, please let us know so that we can contact the creditor and put a stop to it.

Questions & Updates 

You can register with the National Data Center (National Data Center Debtor Registrationto view the trustee’s information on your case, including payments to and from the trustee. We can also review your case information with you.

Feel free to call us and we can find out for you.

If your refund was taken before you filed, then no. If your refund was taken after you filed, then we may be able to get it back, but this is something you will want to discuss with us.

Finishing bankruptcy 

The second course must be completed before you can receive your discharge. If you are about to finish your payments and still have not completed your class, then you need to do it ASAP. If you need any help or information, please call us.

If a creditor is still contacting you after you have received your discharge, you should let us know immediately. It may be a mistake, or it may be a more serious matter that requires further action on our part. You should not be harassed by any creditors after you have received your discharge.

Once you make your final payment, the trustee will send out a DSO form for you to complete and return to our office. Watch for this form and if you have any questions on how to complete it, call our office and we will help you.

DSO really is referring to child support or alimony (Domestic Support Obligation). Once you have made your final bankruptcy payment, you will get a DSO form in the mail asking if you owe child support and/or alimony, and if so, if you are current on those payments. All you must do is mark the correct option, sign it, and mail it back to our office.

If your mortgage is being paid by the trustee, then in most cases the trustee will file a Notice of Final Cure which lets you know that the mortgage has been brought current and lets you know when you need to make the next payment. Call us if you have any questions about this process.

 For Chapter 7 bankruptcy, this is usually about 60 days after your meeting with the trustee. For Chapter 13 bankruptcy, this is after you have made your final payment and completed your DSO form.

Immediately after you get your discharge, you should send a copy of your discharge order to the three (3) credit reporting agencies: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.

After about six (6) months, you should get a copy of your free credit report (www.annualcreditreport.com) to make sure your discharge was reported, and all accounts have been updated. If necessary, follow up with the credit agencies on your own to make sure any mistakes are fixed. If you find that a creditor is failing to honor the discharge or otherwise is causing problems, let us know so that we may discuss your options.