how to file for bankruptcy without a lawyer in florida

by Casper Mertz 3 min read

How to File Bankruptcy in Florida for Free

  • Collect Your Florida Bankruptcy Documents. ...
  • Take Credit Counseling. ...
  • Complete the Bankruptcy Forms. ...
  • Get Your Filing Fee. ...
  • Print Your Bankruptcy Forms. ...
  • Go to Court to File Your Forms. ...
  • Mail Documents to Your Trustee. ...
  • Take Bankruptcy Course 2. ...
  • Attend Your 341 Meeting. ...
  • Dealing with Your Car. ...

Full Answer

Can I file bankruptcy by myself without a bankruptcy lawyer?

Oct 30, 2021 · Filling out the official bankruptcy forms is generally the most complicated and time-consuming task if you choose to file bankruptcy without a lawyer. Download the bankruptcy forms package to save the time and stress involved in tracking down the necessary materials. The packages are inexpensive and provide you with all the forms you need to file for Chapter 7 …

How do you file bankruptcy without an attorney?

Filing Bankruptcy Without a Lawyer in Florida. One of the most frequently asked questions in my practice is “In Florida, can I consider filing bankruptcy without a lawyer?” Honestly, yes you can file without an lawyer, and it doesn’t matter what chapter you file. Chapter 7, …

Should I file for bankruptcy without a lawyer?

Nov 25, 2021 · You'll need to become knowledgeable on federal bankruptcy laws, and the rules and procedures of your local bankruptcy court. For instance, Chapter 7 and 13

Can I get divorced without a lawyer in Florida?

Filing Without an Attorney Home FLMB Filing for bankruptcy may be done without an attorney, however, the Court highly recommends that you retain the services of an attorney to guide you through the process. For legal assistance information, click HERE. Many typing and transcribing companies advertise as Bankruptcy Petition Preparers.

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Can I file bankruptcy without an attorney in Florida?

While getting legal advice from a bankruptcy lawyer can be a great investment in your fresh start, Florida has generous exemption laws, so filing bankruptcy without one is definitely possible.Nov 26, 2021

How do I file Chapter 7 with no money?

Eligible filers are able to file Chapter 7 for free. If your household income is less than 150% of the federal poverty level, you can ask the bankruptcy judge to waive your court fees with a simple application submitted along with your bankruptcy petition.Feb 8, 2022

What is the income limit for filing Chapter 7 in Florida?

In Florida, a one person family with an average monthly income of $3,493 or a 6-month total of $20,958 may qualify for Chapter 7. Some judges look to your ability to pay as part of the “totality of the circumstances” test that may bar you from Chapter 7 bankruptcy, even if your income is above or below the median.

What will I lose if I file bankruptcy?

Filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy wipes out most types of debt, including credit card debt, medical bills, and personal loans. Your obligation to pay these types of unsecured debt is eliminated when the bankruptcy court grants you a bankruptcy discharge.Dec 12, 2021

What can you not do after filing Chapter 7?

What Not To Do When Filing for BankruptcyLying about Your Assets. ... Not Consulting an Attorney. ... Giving Assets (Or Payments) To Family Members. ... Running Up Credit Card Debt. ... Taking on New Debt. ... Raiding The 401(k) ... Transferring Property to Family or Friends. ... Not Doing Your Research.

What is the means test for Chapter 7?

The bankruptcy means test determines who can file for debt erasure through Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It takes into account your income, expenses and family size to determine whether you have enough disposable income to repay your debts.

How much does it cost to file Chapter 7?

Filing fee — The cost to file for Chapter 7 is $335, and $310 for Chapter 13. Credit counseling fee — If you want to file for bankruptcy, you're required to receive credit counseling first. Many agencies charge a nominal fee for this service, which can cost around $50, according to the Federal Trade Commission.Jul 16, 2020

Can you keep your car if you file Chapter 7 in Florida?

You can usually keep your vehicle if you file for bankruptcy. If it has a lien on it and your payments are current, you can continue to make your car payments and keep your car. In Florida, we are limited to the value of a vehicle that you can keep in a bankruptcy.

What debts are not discharged in bankruptcy?

Debts dischargeable in a chapter 13, but not in chapter 7, include debts for willful and malicious injury to property, debts incurred to pay non-dischargeable tax obligations, and debts arising from property settlements in divorce or separation proceedings.

Do you get out of all debts if you declare bankruptcy?

If you're experiencing severe debt problems, filing for bankruptcy can be a powerful remedy. It stops most lawsuits, wage garnishments, and other collection activities. It also eliminates many types of debt, including credit card balances, medical bills, personal loans, and more.

What happens after you file Chapter 7?

A chapter 7 bankruptcy case does not involve the filing of a plan of repayment as in chapter 13. Instead, the bankruptcy trustee gathers and sells the debtor's nonexempt assets and uses the proceeds of such assets to pay holders of claims (creditors) in accordance with the provisions of the Bankruptcy Code.

How long do you have to file for bankruptcy in Florida?

In addition to the national bankruptcy forms described above, the Southern District of Florida Bankruptcy Court requires you to file your pay stubs for the 60-day period before filing. If you don’t have pay stubs for that period, you must file a local Florida called the Declaration Regarding Payment Advices.

How many bankruptcy forms are there in Florida?

Most people who file for bankruptcy in Florida will have to print about 23 different forms if they’re filing on their own plus whatever local Florida bankruptcy forms their district requires. If you don’t have a printer at your house, you should go to a local Staples or Kinkos and try to print your forms there.

What is Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Florida?

Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases are the most common for individuals filing in the Sunshine State. Chapter 13 bankruptcy involves a repayment plan before unsecured debt is eliminated.

What is bankruptcy course 2?

Bankruptcy Course 2 is a lot like Course 1. It’s also known as the “post-filing course” and the “debtor education course.”. People filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Florida have the option of taking Course 2 on the phone, over the internet, or in person.

What is Florida legal aid?

Florida legal aid organizations provide free representation to low-income families who make below a certain amount of income per year, which is usually 200% of the poverty line. Some programs, like Community Legal Services of Mid Florida, are large and funded by Congress through the Legal Services Corporation, while other programs may be smaller and more local.

What to do before filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

But, do you have some obligations after filing your case. The first such task is to send your bankruptcy trustee the paperwork that they request.

How to file for bankruptcy if you are employed?

First, you’re going to need to collect all of the documents required to prepare your bankruptcy petition. If you’re employed, this includes at least 60 days of pay stubs and two years of tax returns. Bankruptcy trustees sometimes ask for bank statements and, if you own a home, they’ll ask for things like your deed and a mortgage statement. It’s good to collect these documents before filing for bankruptcy. If you’re unsure of how much you owe, get your credit report from Equifax, Transunion, or Experian through AnnualCreditReport.com.

What is a non-attorney petition preparer?

Non-attorney Petition Preparers. If you file bankruptcy pro se, you may be offered services by non-attorney petition preparers. By law, preparers can only enter information into forms. They are prohibited from providing legal advice, explaining answers to legal questions, or assisting you in bankruptcy court.

Can you file bankruptcy under Chapter 7?

Filing personal bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 takes careful preparation and understanding of legal issues. Misunderstandings of the law or making mistakes in the process can affect your rights. Court employees and bankruptcy judges are prohibited by law from offering legal advice.

Can I file for bankruptcy without an attorney?

Individuals can file bankruptcy without an attorney, which is called filing pro se. However, seeking the advice of a qualified attorney is strongly recommended because bankruptcy has long-term financial and legal outcomes. Filing personal bankruptcy under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 takes careful preparation and understanding of legal issues.

What information do you need to file for bankruptcy?

Therefore, prior to filing bankruptcy, you should compile the following information: A list of all your creditors, the nature of the debt, the amount owed to each, and their mailing addresses.

Where is bankruptcy filed?

Bankruptcy is filed in federal court. For individuals, the case is usually filed in the district where the borrower lives. For instance, if you reside in Tampa, the case may be filed in the U.S. Middle District of Florida. The residence will be based on the most recent 180 days before filing the case.

What is exempt property?

Exempt property is the property that you do not have to forfeit when filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. A joint filing may entitle the couple to double the amount of some exemptions. For instance, the Florida exemption for a motor vehicle is only $1,000 in an individual bankruptcy case.

What is tenancy by the entireties in Florida?

In a tenancy by the entireties, the property is owned by the marital union, rather than by the individual spouses.

What are the benefits of bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy allows borrowers to stop all collection efforts and get a fresh start immediately. Phone calls, wage garnishments, foreclosure sales, and collections notices all must stop immediately after a bankruptcy is filed. Bankruptcy also provides for a discharge of debt to give people the fresh start they need to rebuild. Bankruptcy has a lot of benefits, but it is not right for every situation. If you are considering bankruptcy, contact a bankruptcy lawyer in Tampa to schedule a consultation.

How many bankruptcy cases are there in Tampa?

For June 2019, there were 852 new bankruptcy cases filed in Tampa alone. Medical bills are a significant factor in the number of bankruptcy cases filed. A study by the American Journal of Medicine found that 62.1% of all bankruptcy cases are attributable to medical reasons.

Is bankruptcy right for everyone?

Bankruptcy also provides for a discharge of debt to give people the fresh start they need to rebuild. Bankruptcy has a lot of benefits, but it is not right for every situation. If you are considering bankruptcy, contact a bankruptcy lawyer in Tampa to schedule a consultation.

How long does a Chapter 7 bankruptcy last?

A Chapter 7 is what you think of as a traditional bankruptcy, where you walk away from your debt and get a fresh start. A Chapter 7 case lasts for a significantly shorter amount of time than a Chapter 13 case. A Chapter 13 can be much more complicated. A Chapter 13 involves a repayment plan that will run for three to five years.

What are non-dischargeable debts?

There are also debts which are non-dischargeable in a bankruptcy case. Non-dischargeable debts include things like child support, alimony, most tax debt, etc. If the bulk of your debts are non-dischargeable a Chapter 7 bankruptcy may not offer the relief you are seeking.

How to determine if you qualify for Chapter 7?

First you will need to determine if you are eligible to file a Chapter 7 by passing the means test. If you are below a certain threshold for your state you will qualify, otherwise you need to complete both parts of the means test calculation to determine your disposable income.

Is bankruptcy good for unsecured debt?

Bankruptcy is most helpful to people with unsecured debt, like credit cards and medical bills, because these kind of debts are dischargeable. You can potentially walk away from them completely. Secured debts are those which are tied to a specific item as collateral.

How long does it take to get a trustee's meeting?

This is generally a short proceeding, maybe 15-20 minutes, and Trustees are accustomed to working with pro se debtors.

Do I need an attorney to file for bankruptcy?

You are not required to hire an attorney to file bankruptcy. You can do so for free, or with a legal aid organization. Written by Attorney Eva Bacevice. Updated October 7, 2020.

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