How do I go about filing for bankruptcy on my own and where do I go to get the papers I would need? 21 Answers as of February 24, 2013

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The Law Office of Marvin Wolf
The Law Office of Marvin Wolf | Marvin Wolf
The forms are on the court's website, but it is a complicated area with many risks - it's much trickier than just filling in a form. As a bankruptcy attorney, I know what a minefield bankruptcy can be. I do not suggest debtors file on their own.
Answer Applies to: New Jersey
Replied: 2/24/2013
Gateway Legal Group | Christian J. Albut
You can file bankruptcy on your own, however I would be extremely diligent on filling out the documents very carefully since there are many exemptions allotted to you in bankruptcy. If certain properties are not exempted properly then you could lose them. You can go the United States Bankruptcy Court website for information on filing the bankruptcy on your own, however there are many options you can consider, such as a paralegal or attorney to merely draft the bankruptcy and then representing yourself. This is a more economical way to file bankruptcy without skipping on the quality of your bankruptcy.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/21/2013
The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC
The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC | Darren Aronow
Go to your local district website and look for "pro se" filers. That will give you forms and information on filing.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 2/21/2013
Law Office of Susan G. Taylor
Law Office of Susan G. Taylor | Susan G. Taylor
It's too complicated to explain. But you can get the forms from the court's website.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 2/21/2013
Troutman & Napier
Troutman & Napier | Gregory A. Napier
You can get all the forms needed from the bankruptcy court clerk and you can also find them online at official bankruptcy court sites. You do NOT need to ever pay for these forms. Just be aware, that even attorneys are often daunted by the complexity of the bankruptcy code and the traps that can await the unwary. So, even though you do not need an attorney to file a bankruptcy, you may want to consult with one anyway.
Answer Applies to: Kentucky
Replied: 2/20/2013
    Reger Rizzo & Darnall LLP | Kathleen DeLacy
    You can get all the information you need from the Bankrutpcy clerks office in Wilmington.
    Answer Applies to: Delaware
    Replied: 2/20/2013
    Law Office of Norman Moore
    Law Office of Norman Moore | Norman P Moore Jr
    The bankruptcy court website for your district will probably have the forms on-line. I do not recommend filing on your own, but if you do, I would start there. Once the forms are complete, take them to the court (along with your checkbook) and file them. Good luck to you.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 2/20/2013
    Law Office of Christian F. Paul
    Law Office of Christian F. Paul | Christian F. Paul
    You can find the papers at the Bankruptcy Court house, and may be able to get them online, along with filing instructions. However, most bankruptcy lawyers really don't charge that much to handle the case for you, and you will be relieved of the stress of doing it yourself. Hope this helps. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/20/2013
    Ferguson & Ferguson
    Ferguson & Ferguson | Randy W. Ferguson
    Almost impossible to do. Save money and hire an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 2/20/2013
    Law Office of D.L. Drain, P.A.
    Law Office of D.L. Drain, P.A. | Diane L. Drain
    Bankruptcy is a very complicated process. It is wise to talk to an experienced bankruptcy attorney before deciding to take this important step.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 2/20/2013
    Eranthe Law Firm
    Eranthe Law Firm | Cate Eranthe
    You can start with the Bankruptcy Court website. There is a lot of information for debtors filing on their own. I do not recommend it because most of the problems with cases and cases that are dismissed are because something was not done correctly by a debtor filing on their own. You have to follow the Federal Law, apply the State Law, and where applicable use the appropriate local procedures, guidelines and forms. Here is the court link - http://www.canb.uscourts.gov/court-information/filing-bankruptcy-case-without-attorney. Nolo Press also has some good books.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/20/2013
    Charles Schneider, P.C.
    Charles Schneider, P.C. | Charles J. Schneider
    You are foolish to do it on your own and I would be foolish to advise you on how to do it.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Ken Love Law | Kenneth Love
    You need an attorney. No offense, but if those are your starting questions, this will be too complicated for you to navigate alone. Bankruptcy can be devastating if handled incorrectly.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Stittleburg Law Office
    Stittleburg Law Office | Bernd Stittleburg
    I would not advise filing bankruptcy on your own.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
    Look on your court web site. they should be there.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    A Fresh Start
    A Fresh Start | Dorothy G Bunce
    Filing bankruptcy on your own is not a good idea for many reasons, but the papers are available on the local bankruptcy court's website.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Law Office of Lynnmarie A. Johnson
    Law Office of Lynnmarie A. Johnson | Lynnmarie Johnson
    You can get both the info and the forms you need on the US Bankruptcy Trustee's website. But I would not recommend it. Despite what many people think, bankruptcy is very complicated and the penalties are very harsh if you don't do it right. Just yesterday I read an article from one of the national newspapers that said 95% of people who try and file a Ch 7 without an attorney fail, and almost 100% of those who try a Ch 13 fail. If you truly can't afford an attorney, and most work with people on payments, try Legal Services and see if you qualify for them to help you out.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Guardian Law Group PLLC
    Guardian Law Group PLLC | C. David Hester
    Go to the website for your local federal district and search for forms. I would recommend getting an attorney as a large number of self-filers end up having their case dismissed because they don't provide everything that is required.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C.
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C. | Stuart M. Nachbar
    You can go online to the bankruptcy court in your district and find all the forms you would need. A word of caution, please note, that you need to have done your credit counseling with receipt of the certificate prior to filing.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Moore Taylor & Thomas PA
    Moore Taylor & Thomas PA | Jane Downey
    Contact a lawyer who is a certified specialist in bankruptcy.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 2/19/2013
    Thomas Vogele & Associates, APC | Thomas A. Vogele
    Filing without an attorney is a time consuming and risky proposition. You can speak to the self-help center at most bankruptcy courts or call the local bar association for a referral to a pro bono clinic.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/19/2013
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