Whether you’re seeking information about credit counseling services or plan to file for bankruptcy protection, you’ll need to become acquainted with various legal forms, filing procedures, and government offices. Without the proper guidance, navigating these forms and procedures can make filing for bankruptcy a pretty overwhelming experience. This section contains a number of resources to help you get a feel for the bankruptcy process and familiarize yourself with the forms and documents. You’ll find a state-by-state bankruptcy court directory, sample "cease communications" letter to creditors, tips on finding the right bankruptcy attorney, a documents checklist, text of U.S. bankruptcy laws, and more.
Bankruptcy & Debt: Forms and Resources
Although bankruptcies can vary greatly from one another depending on the jurisdiction and the details of the filing party's financial life, there are still many filings that make the use of forms, samples, and other resources helpful for someone new to the bankruptcy process.
In this section you can find checklists and questionnaires that will help you and your bankruptcy attorney organize your case and the supporting documents effectively, starting with your first meeting. This section also contains official court forms, filing packages, bankruptcy statistics, and court specific documents.
Also included here are documents that help describe the U.S. Trustee Program, a division of the U.S. Department of Justice. The U.S. Trustee Program oversees nearly all bankruptcy cases. Links in this section describe the U.S. Trustee's role in consumer bankruptcy cases and provides links to the organization's regional websites and local offices.
United States Bankruptcy Courts
Bankruptcy is handled by specially designated bankruptcy courts in the fifty states and Puerto Rico. Within larger or more populous states the bankruptcy courts are divided into districts that serve smaller geographic areas. Each state and district has their own local rules, forms, and opinions that may impact how your case is handled.
Some districts permit the filing and viewing of court documents through an electronic system such as PACER. Some districts also make reference manuals, notices, statistics, consumer information, and other helpful documents. Accessing the information provided by your district's courts can be a very effective way to prepare for your bankruptcy.
Sample "Cease Communications" Letter to Creditor
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act of 1996 provides a number of important protections for debtors who are being harassed by creditors. Before entering into bankruptcy proceedings it can be helpful to avail yourself of one important right that can put an end to harassing phone calls and notices. Follow the link below to find a sample version of a "cease communications" letter.
A debtor who submits a cease communications letter to a creditor prevents them from communicating further except to acknowledge receipt of the cease communications notice or to inform you that they are filing a lawsuit relating to the debt.
Although a cease communications letter doesn't solve your problems with your creditors it can, at least, silence them during a period in which focusing on preparing yourself for court is more productive than fielding demands for payment.