Bankruptcy Chapter 13 Process in Washington DC
Information Provided by our Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Attorney
If you choose to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you should be aware of the complex bankruptcy laws and regulations that you must comply with in order to satisfy your obligations. You should consider speaking with an attorney to help you file for bankruptcy and to create your Chapter 13 repayment plan.
Filing a Petition for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
In a bankruptcy Chapter 13 case, a debtor must first file a petition with the bankruptcy court in the jurisdiction where that debtor resides or has resided for the greater part of the last 180 days. The petition must include the following information:
- List of all creditors and the amount of debt due to each creditor
- The source, amount, and nature of the debtor’s income
- List of all the debtor’s property (both real property and personal assets)
- List of all monthly living expenses, including food, clothing, shelter, utilities, taxes, and medical expenses
Married individuals filing bankruptcy must also provide the above information for their spouses, even if they are filing a separate bankruptcy petition. In addition to the petition, debtors must also file the following documents with the court:
- A schedule of assets and liabilities
- A schedule of current income and expenditures
- A statement of financial affairs
- A schedule of executory contracts and unexpired leases
Because credit counseling is required within 180 days prior to filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the debtor must also file the following documents:
- Certificate of credit counseling
- Copy of any debt repayment plan developed
- Evidence of payment from employers received within 60 days prior to filing
- Statement of monthly net income
- Document detailing any anticipated increases in income or expenses after filing for bankruptcy
- Record of any interest the debtor has in federal or state qualified education and tuition accounts
Debtors must also pay the applicable case filing fee ($235, as of January, 2016) and administrative fee ($75, as of January, 2016) to the clerk of the court upon filing. However, the court may approve paying such fees in installments.
Appointment of a Trustee
After the petition is filed, the court appoints a trustee. Then, the bankruptcy clerk provides notice of the bankruptcy proceedings to all creditors provided by the debtor. The Chapter 13 trustee evaluates the case, collects payments from the debtor, and disburses payments to creditors.
Meeting of the Creditors
Twenty to fifty days after the debtor files the Chapter 13 petition for bankruptcy, the trustee must hold a meeting of the creditors. During this meeting, the debtor must appear and answer, under oath, any questions regarding his or her assets and liabilities. Unsecured creditors have 90 days after the meeting of the creditors to file their claims with the court.
Any problems with the Chapter 13 repayment plan are discussed either during or shortly after the creditors meeting. Following the meeting, the debtor, Chapter 13 trustee, and creditors attend a hearing on the debtor’s proposed Chapter 13 repayment plan.
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Chapter 13 Discharge and Information about Chapter 13 vs Chapter 7
Unlike Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the Chapter 13 discharge applies only to those debts covered by the Chapter 13 repayment plan. However, this discharge of debt allows the debtor to focus on rebuilding his financial stability while being relieved of any liability on the debts paid pursuant to the Chapter 13 repayment plan.
Conclusion to Bankruptcy Chapter 13 Information
If you are facing possible bankruptcy proceedings, please take advantage of the free consultation that our Chapter 13 lawyer offers. There are so many things for you to plan for and to think through and to file that you need someone that has your best interests in mind. You can call us now or fill out the form on our site. Our firm will help you figure out your options in Washington DC and Maryland.