What Paperwork do I Need to File Bankruptcy in New York City?
Many of our clients in New York City are worried they may not have all the right paperwork in order to file bankruptcy. It’s great if you have kept everything, but people that have fallen on hard times can let things get out of control including their record keeping. There is paperwork you must have in order to file, but your bankruptcy attorney can help get everything in order and can get even the messiest finances ready to file for bankruptcy.
Of course the more you know about your situation the better, and it is often in your best interest to save as much paperwork as possible, especially your collection letters. Debt collectors frequently engage in questionable or even illegal practices when coming after our clients. Many collection letters are in clear violation of the FDCPA (Fair Debt Collections Practices Act) and can be worth up to $1000 a piece in a lawsuit against your creditors. Our office will want to see any collection letters you have because these claims are often a good way to pay for the bankruptcy help you need.
If you are getting ready to consult with a bankruptcy attorney start thinking about what they will need for your case and start saving and organizing the paperwork to the best of your ability. Keep all of your credit card bills in separate folders with the collection letters for each account. Separate letters from third party collection agencies, and keep a folder for any summons or other legal paperwork you may have received. At a minimum your attorney will need your tax returns for the last two years, proof of income for the past seven months in the form of paystubs or a profit and loss statement if you are self-employed. They will also need statements for retirement accounts, auto loans and mortgages, as well as your proof of ownership paperwork like deeds and car titles. If you have a life insurance policy, bring this with you to your initial consultation as well. Do the best you can to have the most current statements available for all of your debts.
Medical bills may be a little bit harder to organize, but again make your best effort to itemize and collect all of your doctor and hospital bills into separate folders with the associated collection letters for each account. The same too goes for any old utility bills, cell phone bills or anything else you may have been making regular payments towards. Be aware of the possible ownership changes to your delinquent accounts. Often times when a consumer falls behind on their bills the account is sold off to another financial party who will begin sending you letters too. The more you can provide the easier it will be for your attorney to prepare your filing and the smoother your bankruptcy will go. There is more paperwork that may be needed on a case by case basis, but don’t let the fear of not having the right paperwork keep you from meeting with a bankruptcy attorney.
At the end of the day remember that your bankruptcy attorney is there to help you file bankruptcy. It’s helpful to give as much information as possible to your attorney, but you can still find financial relief through bankruptcy with even the messiest of record keeping. If you live in New York City contact the Law Offices of William Waldner online or at 212.244.2882 to arrange a free bankruptcy consultation today. We only practice bankruptcy law and maintain 99% Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge record in New York City as of 8/31/16.
**** DISCLAIMER: This article is intended for educational purposes only. By reading no attorney-client relationship has been created. Prior results do not guarantee a similar result for future clients.