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What Not to Do When You are Considering Filing for Bankruptcy

If your debt has reached a point where it has become unmanageable and you feel that bankruptcy is the only way to get it back under your control, the decisions you make with your money can have a significant effect on your bankruptcy case. The steps you take between now and the date your bankruptcy case is filed with the court can determine how easy the process is for you. Some choices you make could even result in you being unable to have a certain debt discharged. The following actions can all hurt your bankruptcy case, so be sure to avoid them by keeping them at the forefront of your mind. For further information about the bankruptcy process and representation as you file your case and work with the court, contact an experienced bankruptcy attorney.

Pay Off Certain Creditors

This can be construed as a preferential transfer, which is a form of bankruptcy fraud. If you know, or are even simply considering, that you will file for bankruptcy, it is important that you avoid taking out new loans, even if those loans are to repay your creditors. Pay off your normal, day-to-day expenses, but do not pay a debt in full or take any other drastic financial steps before your bankruptcy case is filed with the court.

Make Unusual Bank Account Deposits

Your repayment plan is based on the amount of money you can consistently pay back each month. Skewing this number with large, inconsistent deposits can put you into a position where it is more difficult to determine an appropriate repayment amount. Similarly, moving your money or assets into another party’s account can also hurt your case because the court could see this as an attempt to commit fraud. Any legitimate property transfers, such as the sale of a car or piece of real estate, should be fully documented and submitted with your statement of financial affairs.

File for Bankruptcy Alone

Although working with an attorney can be expensive, navigating the bankruptcy process without the guidance of an experienced attorney can end up costing you even more. Contact a bankruptcy attorney who can advise you and represent your case as you file for bankruptcy and work through the court process to eliminate your debt. Bankruptcy law is complicated and it can be easy to be taken advantage of or get into an agreement that is not entirely fair to you. Hire an attorney who can protect your rights.

Published March 3, 2016
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