Credit Counseling is a Must When Filing for Bankruptcy Says Waterloo Bankruptcy Lawyer
Des Moines, IA (Law Firm Newswire) February 27, 2012 – Individuals considering whether or not to file bankruptcy must take credit counseling within six months prior to filing.
There are some limited exceptions to the mandate that potential bankruptcy filers take a credit counseling course within six months before filing, noted Waterloo bankruptcy lawyer Kevin Ahrenholz. Those exceptions need to be discussed as part of the process prior to filing. Additionally, approved bankruptcy credit counseling organizations are not the same in each state, and usually there is a small fee for pre-bankruptcy counseling. However, the fee may be waived based on the person’s ability to pay. A waiver request may be made before counseling begins.
Many individuals about to go into credit counseling ask how long the session lasts and whether or not they need to be present with a counselor to meet the Court’s requirements when filing for bankruptcy. The typical counseling session is approximately one hour to an hour and a half, noted Ahrenholz. It may be done in person, online or by phone. The session includes discussion of alternatives to filing, offers an evaluation of an individual’s financial situation, helps the person work out a budget plan and provides a certificate of completion.
The certificate of completion must be given to a bankruptcy attorney, as it is filed with the bankruptcy petition to show the court the credit counseling requirement has been completed. If a debt management plan was created during the credit counseling session, it too must be included for the court’s records.
There are many different types of documents that need to be filed when a debtor opts to file for bankruptcy, and part of the process of filing is determining which Chapter the debtor should file under. Chapter 7 is not for everyone and neither is Chapter 13. The Chapter a debtor files under, with the assistance of a Waterloo bankruptcy attorney is chosen based on the circumstances of the case at hand.
A debtor does not just walk into a bankruptcy attorney’s office and indicate they want to file bankruptcy, not without an extensive conversation with the attorney about alternatives, credit counseling, assets, whether or not they have a job with a regular income, the possibility of drafting a repayment plan or the knowledge about what happens when someone does declare bankruptcy.
While the decision to file bankruptcy is difficult for many, Ahrenholz noted, it is something that can happen to anyone. With the assistance of an experienced Waterloo bankruptcy attorney, a debtor has a brighter financial future in store for them when their bankruptcy is eventually discharged.
Kevin Ahrenholz is an Iowa bankruptcy lawyer and Iowa bankruptcy attorney. To contact an Iowa bankruptcy attorney, Iowa bankruptcy lawyer, or set up an appointment, visit http://www.iowachapter7.com or call 1.877.888.1766.
309 Court Ave., Suite 805
Des Moines, IA 50309
Offices in Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Waterloo, Mason City, and Vinton.
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