If you’re reading this post it means that you are either a current or prospective client of mine. It also probably means that we have spoken on the phone and I have sent you the access password to this post. There is nothing in this post or the information in the linked documents that is secret or confidential, but it is not information that I generally make available to people who are not current or prospective clients.
The purpose of this post is to provide you with my “Welcome to Bankruptcy Information.” You may return to it as often as required, as the password won’t expire. You may also periodically want to return here to see if I have added information.
1. Basic Bankruptcy Information: The basic information on what you need to do next, including links to websites for inputting your financial information, creditor classes, etc., can be found in my Bankruptcy Basics Handout. This document is for your information only. Some of this information may be a repeat of other information we have already discussed. If so, you can also find the logins for the credit counseling and Online Bankruptcy Interview process in items 6 and 7 below.
2. Notices and Disclosures to Assisted Persons: In addition, the Bankruptcy Court requires that I provide you with other basic information about the bankruptcy process, alternatives to filing, alternatives within the bankruptcy process, etc., current filing fees, etc. It is dubbed with the winning name “Notices and Disclosures to Assisted Persons.” I will need you to sign where indicated on the first page, initial each page at the bottom right, and return to me, so that I have a paper trail in my file indicating that you have received this information. Please sign this and return by email (email@example.com) or fax (415)-358-4122 when you are ready to proceed.
3. Client Acknowledgment: I have my own Client Acknowledgment Form that I also request my clients to sign and return to me. The purpose of this is to provide a checklist for both me and you, so that I know we have discussed certain issues, and you have acknowledged that we have discussed these issues. You can find this Client Acknowledgement here. Please sign this and return by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or fax (415)-358-4122 when you are ready to proceed.
4. Authorization to Obtain Credit Report: I may have asked you to provide authorization for me to obtain a credit report to assist me in preparing your case. If so, the Authorization Form can be downloaded here. Please sign this and return by email (email@example.com) or fax (415)-358-4122 when you are ready to proceed.
5. United States Trustee Audit Program: If you are wondering what the United States Trustee Audit program is all about, then check this link. I provide this so that you may see what a request by the United States Trustee to audit your bankruptcy file and supporting data and documentation looks like. Not surprisingly, it is intended to intimidate the reader.
6. Stop My Bills! (Or the Online Bankruptcy Interview) While you will find this in the Bankruptcy Basics Handout above, the website for the Online Bankruptcy Interview inputting financial data is called www.stopmybills.com, and can be found at that link. It will take you to a front page that requires that you input my Attorney ID and your social security number to start the process. My Attorney ID is “wintoncases” without the quotes.
7. Online Credit Counseling and Debtor Education Classes: A service for the online debtor education and Financial Management Course that I frequently refer my clients to is Start Fresh Today. The Credit Counseling class must be taken before filing, and within 180 days of filing. The Financial Management Court must be taken after filing, but before the discharge can be entered. You may use any approved provider that you like, but I like these folks because they send your certificate of completion directly to me if you give them my attorney id. My attorney ID for this provider is “winton3222,” again without the quotes. If you would like to find another provider, then you may want to wander over to the website for the United States Department of Justice List of Credit Counseling Agencies Approved Pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 111.