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California Bankruptcy Process

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Step-by-step guidance from a San Jose Chapter 13 attorney

Preparing to file a bankruptcy petition is an information-intensive process. Federal bankruptcy courts require bankruptcy petitioners to submit a variety of financial documents in order to guard against fraud or abuse of the bankruptcy process. These requirements may seem overwhelming at first. But the bankruptcy process is nothing you cannot handle with the help of a knowledgeable Chapter 13 lawyer in San Jose. At Edgar Law Group, LLP, our founder and principal, San Jose Chapter 13 attorney Ronda Edgar, gives her clients step-by-step instructions for beginning the bankruptcy process.

A San Jose Chapter 13 attorney can help you through the process

The first step to filing a bankruptcy petition is to undergo mandatory credit counseling. This is a prerequisite for individual petitioners for both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Credit counseling must be conducted by an approved counseling agency and must occur no more than 180 days prior to filing a bankruptcy petition.

A bankruptcy petition – the document filed with the appropriate United States bankruptcy court that officially begins the process – must contain a number of details related to the petitioner’s finances, including certain attached documents. The petitioner must gather documents ahead of time so that a Chapter 13 attorney in San Jose can fully and accurately complete the petition, including:

  • Social Security cards
  • Drivers’ licenses
  • Proof of any judgments against you
  • Recent real estate appraisals
  • Recent real estate tax assessments
  • Pay stubs
  • Profit and loss statements
  • Documentation of other income
  • Federal and state tax returns from the previous two years
  • Bank statements for the last three months
  • Life insurance policies, including current cash value
  • Recent investment account statements
  • Recent IRA statements
  • Recent pension statements
  • Recent 401(k) or other pension or annuity statements
  • Contracts in any current real estate contracts in which you are involved
  • Divorce decrees and support orders
  • Credit card bills and other proof of indebtedness for unsecured creditors

These documents are necessary to help your attorney identify your assets and liabilities in order to determine if bankruptcy is right for you and then to ultimately prepare your bankruptcy petition. Ronda Edgar works with her clients to help them gather this information and provides personal attention beyond that of other Chapter 13 lawyers in San Jose.

Contact an experienced San Jose Chapter 13 law firm

As a San Jose Chapter 13 lawyer, Ronda Edgar reviews her clients’ financials, advises them of their options and, should they choose bankruptcy, guides them through the process from start to finish. We are conveniently located in downtown San Jose and serve businesses and individuals throughout the Bay Area, including Sacramento, San Francisco, Oakland, Modesto and the surrounding areas. We offer flexible hours by appointment and free consultations. Call us today at 877-345-3591 or contact us online to discuss your case.

Your Case Begins With A Free Consultation

We are available to discuss your case for free in an initial consultation. During this consultation, we can discuss specifically what our team will do to move your case forward and meet your needs. Call 877-345-3591 or email today to schedule a meeting.

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