U.S. Constitution Article 1, Section 8: Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy is a Federal Law which allows consumers and businesses to eliminate or repay some or all of their debts under the protection of the Federal Bankruptcy Court. For the most part, bankruptcies can be divided into two types — Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. 

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Filing your Petition

Preparing to File

Please use the Consultation Checklist to assist you in gathering paperwork necessary to proceed. 


If you are missing or do not have access to the documents requested, we ask that you keep your scheduled appointment and we will discuss alternative methods of documentation.



Credit Counseling

Federal rules dictate that all bankruptcy Petitions are accompanied by proof of credit counseling. Individuals or married couples filing jointly are mandated to undergo credit counseling. 


We suggest using Access Counseling or Money Sharp to obtain your certificates of credit counseling. Both firms are competitively priced and operate 24/7. You may also obtain counseling with any approved counseling agency. 

 

Access Counseling Unique ID: 97BF8TF

Money Sharp Unique ID: JBACH

Meeting of Creditors

Depending on where you live or the Chapter you file, you may attend a hearing in Harrisburg, York, Williamsport or Selingsgrove. You will always be accompanied by Counsel. 


Bankruptcy hearings are typically scheduled four to six weeks after a Petition is filed.  


What to Expect at the Meeting of Creditors

Consultation Checklist

Discharge: In Depth

Bankruptcy law book and gavel

Order of Discharge

 

The discharge only applies to debts that arose up to the date you filed


Additionally, if you've received money or property by fraud, that debt may not be discharged. It is important to list all your property and all your debts in your bankruptcy. If you do not, it is possible that debt will not be discharged.


It is important to note you can be denied a discharge if you do something dishonest in connection with your bankruptcy case, such as destroy or hide property, falsify records or lie or disobey a Court Oder.


Some creditors hold a secured claim (for example, the bank that holds the mortgage on your house or the loan company that has a lien on your car). You do not have to pay a secured claim if the debt is discharged, but the creditor can still take the property therefore continue to pay unless you wish to surrender the home and/or car. (This can be a tricky concept. We will explain in greater detail in person).