Can I choose which accounts to add to bankruptcy? How? 15 Answers as of May 28, 2015

Can I be selective about which accounts I add to a bankruptcy? I am thinking about Chapter 7 because my income has been hit hard by the economy and I owe almost $30,000. Can I go through the bankruptcy alone or is a lawyer mandatory?

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GARCIA & GONZALES, P.C.
GARCIA & GONZALES, P.C. | Richard N. Gonzales
Not even having a doctor is "mandatory", although I hear it's advisable to use a doctor to remove an appendix (a relatively easy operation I hear). However, if something goes wrong (with the operation or the BK filing), you may end up paying more to get things corrected.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 5/28/2015
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
You must list all of your debts. The law requires that. One advantage of a lawyer is that you don't make mistakes that could cost you your discharge. I am continually amazed at what people think the instructions mean. This not an area off the law where "creativity" counts.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/28/2015
Ronald K. Nims LLC | Ronald K. Nims
No, you're required under oath to list all your debts. It is not mandatory to have an attorney but bankruptcy law is complex, unless you have a very simple situation, not using an attorney could be very costly.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 5/27/2015
Stephens Gourley & Bywater | David A. Stephens
The Bankruptcy code requires that you list all debts. You can reaffirm the debts you want to keep if the creditor and the bankruptcy court agree.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 5/27/2015
Deborah F Bowinski, Attorney & Counselor at Law | Debby Bowinski
You are required to list EVERY DEBT that you owe when you file for bankruptcy. You are allowed to file yourself, but it is not a simple process and many people who try to file themselves either end up having their cases dismissed or, they end up losing assets that they might not have had to lose if they had sought legal advice and hired a lawyer to guide them.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 5/26/2015
    Richard B. Jacobson & Associates, LLC | Richard B. Jacobson
    A lawyer is not mandatory in a bankruptcy, but almost always retaining an experienced BR lawyer is worth the investment. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT: You may not pick and choose as to which debts (or claims, or obligations) you disclose on your bankruptcy papers. You sign under penalty of perjury several times on the papers that they are complete and correct. You must list all your creditors, and all your property. There is no choice in the matter, and I urge you not to take any risk with the laws of perjury. There are some legitimate ways of agreeing to continue to pay certain debts: your lawyer can advise you in more detail. Good Luck.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 5/26/2015
    A Fresh Start
    A Fresh Start | Dorothy G Bunce
    Bankruptcy law requires that ALL DEBTS BE LISTED and since the bankruptcy paper is submitted under penalty of perjury it would be a crime to do what you propose. Although you are not required to have an attorney represent you in bankruptcy court, you are held to the same requirements in preparing your bankruptcy as any lawyer would be. Most people that represent themselves in bankruptcy court regret it. If you commit a crime in submitting your bankruptcy, you will be entitled to a free public defender in the criminal court though.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 5/26/2015
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC | Darren Aronow
    A lawyer is not mandatory but advised and you can not pick and choose what account to include. They must all be included.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/26/2015
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    An attorney is not mandatory, just wise. Full disclosure of all debts is mandatory, no favorites.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/25/2015
    The Schreiber Law Firm
    The Schreiber Law Firm | Jeffrey D. Schreiber
    All of your debts must be listed in a bankruptcy petition. Not listing all of your creditors can have your case dismissed. You do not need to use an attorney, but given the question you have asked about creditors, you should use one.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/25/2015
    Mauritz Van Niekerk, Attorneys at Law
    Mauritz Van Niekerk, Attorneys at Law | Christiaan van Niekerk
    By low you have to include all your income and expenses on your schedules when you file for bankruptcy that also includes all your debt.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/25/2015
    Patrick W. Currin, Attorney at Law | Patrick Currin
    No, you must include all debt. It is highly advisable to hire an attorney as it is not exactly a common sense procedure.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/25/2015
    Law Offices of Joseph A. Mannis
    Law Offices of Joseph A. Mannis | Todd Mannis
    You can go alone; however the fact that you are asking the most basic of basic questions - do I have to list each account (the answer is yes) - I think it would behoove you do spend a little more money, get an experienced bk attorney such as myself or someone else, and do this perfectly one time, the first time.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/25/2015
    Law Offices of Daniel J Winter
    Law Offices of Daniel J Winter | Daniel J Winter
    Every account you owe is included in a bankruptcy filing, by law. But, you can pay any account back if you wish. You can file bankruptcy without a lawyer, but it is not recommended, because it is very complicated.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 5/25/2015
    Eranthe Law Firm
    Eranthe Law Firm | Cate Eranthe
    A knowledgeable bankruptcy lawyer in your area is recommended. Bankruptcy is a complex area of the law that many lawyers won't even touch. I'm always amazed when people think its a DIY project. The bargain that you make with the court is FULL disclosure in exchange for a discharge (they go away) of all dischargable (some won't go away - like recent taxes, child and spousal support, and student loans - to name a few) debts. At least get a consultation to learn more.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/25/2015
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