Filing for bankruptcy can get rid of your unsecured debt and give you a fresh financial start. However, if you don’t properly prepare for the process, you could make errors that would jeopardize your case. The legal professionals at Law Offices of Frank E Turney, PA, in Catonsville, MD, share some of the common mistakes people make and how to avoid them.
What to Watch Out for When Filing Bankruptcy
1. Moving Assets
It may be tempting to transfer some of your assets, such as a vacation home or vehicle, into a family member’s name before filing, but it can backfire. If the court finds out that you attempted to hide them, you may be subject to criminal penalties.
2. Filing When You’re About to Receive Substantial Income
If you know you will receive an inheritance or a settlement from a lawsuit soon, then postpone filing for bankruptcy. After you get the money, the court may assume you can pay back your debts. Ask your attorney if and when it’s appropriate to begin the process if you are in this predicament.
3. Racking Up New Debt
If you know you will file for bankruptcy soon, avoid accumulating any more debt. If you charge your credit cards before filing, your creditors may argue that you used the service with no intention of paying it back and refuse to discharge what you owe.
4. Not Filing Tax Returns
Your tax returns are important for determining your earnings and asset holdings, so you should remember to file them. If you don’t, it could put your case on hold.
5. Providing Dishonest Information
When you fill out bankruptcy paperwork, you have to disclose accurate information about your assets, income, and debt. If you provide false information, you may lose your case and incur criminal penalties. If you don’t understand what’s written, ask your lawyer for clarification.
If you need assistance filing bankruptcy, consult with an experienced attorney. The Law Offices of Frank E Turney, PA, has been helping residents regain their financial freedom since 1993, offering expert advice and quality legal counsel throughout the process. Call them at (410) 788-8830 to schedule a consultation, or visit their website for more information about their background in this practice area.