The Process
 

The Process 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 


An individual who is considering filing for bankruptcy should prepare a list of assets (property that the person owns such as a car, real estate, checking accounts, savings accounts, etc.) and liabilities (money or property that the person owes to third parties such as credit card companies, the IRS or other creditors). They should also prepare an “after tax monthly budget." This budget starts with a person’s after tax monthly income and also lists their ordinary and necessary personal or business expenses. They should also prepare a schedule containing their gross monthly income for the last six months less Social Security payments. After these four items are completed, the client should call or email Jim Shenwick and schedule an appointment. This first appointment lasts for approximately one hour, in which Jim Shenwick will review your financial situation, applicable bankruptcy law, answer questions that you may have and suggest a course of action such as filing for bankruptcy protection or doing a “workout with creditors.” At the end of the first meeting, Jim Shenwick will give you a written fee quote for the legal services needed to prepare the bankruptcy filing (the Court filing fee for a Chapter 7 filing is $299), enter into a retainer agreement with you and give you a bankruptcy questionnaire to fill out at home. You take the bankruptcy questionnaire home, fill it out, and return it to Jim Shenwick. After your bankruptcy petition is prepared, you return to Jim Shenwick’s office to review and execute the bankruptcy petition. The bankruptcy petition is then filed with the Bankruptcy Court and you attend a meeting with the trustee (the 341 meeting of creditors) with appearance counsel and assuming there are no challenges to the bankruptcy filing from creditors, you will receive a discharge (a piece of paper from the clerk of the Bankruptcy Court stating that debts are discharged). The process takes approximately 4 to 5 months from start to finish.