The first step is a big one, but you will soon be ready to face a future free of the stress of past-due bills and the threat of property losses and lawsuits. A chapter 7 bankruptcy filing provides immediate relief, but the bankruptcy code's most recent retooling has added a few extra chores onto your list of things to do. You must now take two different classes to make your bankruptcy happen, so read on learn more.
While not really that new, the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act from 2005 is fairly recent when it comes to the glacial pace that many old codes are updated. The most important message that this rework gives to filers is that they should get educated about financial matters. It also helps readers know how to prove that they really cannot pay their bills given their income.
The Credit Counseling Class
Before you file for a chapter 7 you must participate in a credit counseling class and include proof with your filing. To call this exercise a class is somewhat misleading since it's really a budget prepared by you to show that you can no longer pay your bills. The purpose of providing this information is to ensure that you are not filing frivolously and without true need. Make sure you list all of your bills that you owe on a monthly basis.
Your budget entries will be reviewed by a credit counseling agency who will determine your ability to file. If it appears to them that you should be able to pay your bills you have the opportunity to appeal the decision. You can participate in this "class" online or by mail and it can be taken up to 180 days before you file.
The Personal Finance Class
This class should be taken within 45 days of your creditors' meeting and can also be taken online, by mail, by phone, and in person. As you might have guessed from the name, the class teaches information to assist you in making a financial fresh start and in avoiding future financial problems like the ones that led to your filing. Here, you will learn about acquiring new credit in safe and healthy ways, making a budget, saving for emergencies, and more. The cost of both of the above classes can be waived if you can show that you cannot afford them, so speak to your attorney about the waiver.
To learn more about these two classes, speak with your bankruptcy attorney.