The Guide: Part 1
Many people ask the question “how do I file bankruptcy?” There are many ways of looking at the question. First, people want to know ‘do I qualify for bankruptcy’. If they qualify, they want to know the steps that are required to get a case filed. Once the case is filed they want to know what happens as it winds its way through the court system. Hopefully the case is successful (as over 95% of our cases are) and our client wants to know what happens after the case is out of the court system.
So, who qualifies for bankruptcy?
Technically everyone, but bankruptcy should only be used once your debts have become overwhelming or you are facing the loss of a home or a car or for any of the myriad of reasons that people choose to file.
First Steps in Bankruptcy
The first step involves an analysis of your income. Unless you are a salaried employee or living on a fixed income, this analysis can be quite difficult and messy. The good news is that we do this bankruptcy income analysis for you for free at a face to face consultation. We have to first look at how much income you’ve grossed (that’s BEFORE taxes) in the six months prior to the month you come to see us. For example, if you came to see us in July, we would need to know how much money you earned from January 1st through June 30th. If you get a paycheck, we ask to see your pay stubs or whatever your employer gives you to show what you’ve earned. If you are self-employed, it’s a bit more complicated. We can either speak with you about what we need you to bring, or you can look at our self-employed persons page for more detailed information.
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- information about your income
- income analysis
Unfortunately, looking at your gross income is just the first step. Fortunately, because our entire practice is dedicated to representing people who are struggling financially, this step (as well as every step of the bankruptcy process) is something we do everyday and can almost certainly analyze for you in a free face to face meeting.
For more information on bankruptcy, read our guide:
The Bankruptcy Guide
Part 2 - Means Testing, Median Income and 'Safe Harbor'
Part 3 - Formal Means Testing
Part 4 - Bankruptcy Pre-filing
Part 5 - Post-filing - set date for meeting of creditors
Part 6 - I survived the creditors meeting, am I finished?
Part 7 - Now that I’ve received my discharge, what do I do?
You can call us today at (713) 961-9477 or use the form below for a free, no obligation consultation. To judge for yourself whether you are a candidate for bankruptcy filing, feel free to fill out our quick questionnaire located on the right side of the page.