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Completing Your Bankruptcy Paperwork: Tips from a Durham Bankruptcy Attorney

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You’re bombarded on a daily basis with phone calls from multiple collection agencies. Creditors keep sending letters in the mail wanting the full balance paid on several debts. The hospital is threatening to turn your account over to collections and your cell phone has already been disconnected for non-payment of the bill. Does this scenario sound all too familiar? If so, filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy may be the best option for you.

Once you decide to take action, it’s time to find yourself an experienced North Carolina bankruptcy lawyer. During your initial consultation, you will learn about North Carolina bankruptcy laws. You’ll also discover exactly how Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies differ, then determine which chapter is right for your unique situation.

Once you’ve decided to proceed with a bankruptcy, you will begin the paperwork. Be prepared, as you’ll have to prepare and submit a lot of forms. While it may seem like paperwork overkill, the law requires you to provide a very detailed financial disclosure. For example, you will legally need to file a petition to initiate the bankruptcy process and also provide detailed paperwork showing what you own, how much debt you have, the types of debts you owe, your monthly income, monthly expenses and details of your financial history. All of this paperwork allows the court and your creditors to determine if you qualify for the type of relief you are seeking in your bankruptcy case.

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Even though filling out all that paperwork may seem tedious, it’s necessary. It is also vital that you provide truthful and accurate information on each and every piece of paper. The following tips will help you avoid the most common mistakes and complete your bankruptcy paperwork correctly:

Never Lie

Lying about your situation or attempting to hide things is a sure fire way to have your bankruptcy petition denied. It’s important to understand that the vast majority of those people who file for bankruptcy do qualify. If you are found to be providing false information to the court by leaving out assets or lying about your income, your case could be dismissed and you can be barred from filing for protection on those specific debts ever again.

Never Leave Out Income

Many times, people think that a part-time job does not need to be included as income. Nothing could be further from the truth. Remember: All income must be reported. That means everything; even the $250 you earn from waiting tables a couple weekends a month. If you claim dependents in your bankruptcy petition, you have to report all of his or her income as well.

Don't Omit Cars or Car Loans

Many people think that they stand a better chance of keeping their car if they just don’t list it among their assets. This is never a good plan. If you own your car, it is an asset. If it is secured by a loan, it is a liability. Either way, it must be listed, as the court-appointed trustee assigned to review your case must know about each car you have. And never try to sell your car to another family member just before filing for bankruptcy protection. You’re definitely going to lose it that way.

If your car is secured by a loan, you must notify your lender that you have filed bankruptcy. Under most circumstances, you will be allowed to keep the car, but the lender may decide there are specific requirements you must follow in doing so. Failure to notify the lender about your bankruptcy filing may result in the loss of your car.

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Filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a detailed process. Under the guidance of an experienced North Carolina bankruptcy attorney, you will soon be on your way to a fresh financial start.

Dedicated to helping residents of North Carolina find the best solutions to their debt problems. Don’t waste another day worrying about your debt. Call 1-888-234-4181 today to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your bankruptcy options.

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