Bankruptcy offers some significant benefits to borrowers unable to meet their financial obligations, but taking advantage of these programs means navigating the complexities of the legal system. Even minor errors or innocent transactions can lead to unnecessary delays or cause your case to be dismissed. If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, the following dos and don’ts will help ensure you get the debt relief you need as quickly as possible.
Collect Your Financial Documentation
Filing a bankruptcy petition requires extensive financial documentation, including tax returns for the previous two years and all of your relevant W-2s. You will also need pay stubs for at least six months as well as statements from any banking or investment accounts.
Stop Automatic Payments
If you do not plan on reaffirming an account, speak to the bank or your creditor to stop any automatic payment plans. If you have difficulty revoking permission for your automatic payments, consider closing the account and opening a new one with a different financial institution.
Hire an Attorney
The complexity of the bankruptcy code makes it difficult for petitioners to navigate successfully without legal assistance. Your lawyer will ensure that you receive all of the benefits to which you’re entitled, including exempting as much of your personal property as possible.
Conceal Assets or Debts
Attempting to conceal assets, either by failing to disclose them or transferring ownership to another party, can cause the court to deny your petition and may even result in criminal charges. Be honest with your attorney about the state of your finances, including any debts you may not want to discharge.
Use Home Equity to Pay Down Debts
While your bankruptcy attorney may be able to stop an impending foreclosure, an open home equity line of credit account or second mortgage may complicate the matter. As a general rule, don’t open any new credit accounts if you plan to file for bankruptcy.
Don’t go through this difficult, and sometimes confusing, process alone. As a board-certified bankruptcy specialist, Action Advocacy prides itself on providing high-quality legal advice and effective guidance to borrowers throughout Connecticut. If you’re falling further and further behind on your debts, this accomplished legal team will help ensure you get the second chance you deserve. To discuss your options and schedule a free consultation, visit their website or call (860) 859-2017 now.