Getting a fresh start through bankruptcy is an opportunity for debtors to discharge their debts and start anew. However, bankruptcy also requires that debtors are honest and responsible in how their traverse the system. How does a debtor know they are behaving in a responsible way? Below are seven signs that a bankruptcy debtor is responsible:
- Responsible debtors are always honest with their bankruptcy attorney. They inform the bankruptcy attorney of all their outstanding debts and obligations even money they owe to family and friends.
- Responsible debtors take the time to accurately assess their assets and income so that their bankruptcy attorney can place them in the proper type of bankruptcy and report accurate information about the debtor's income and assets to the bankruptcy court.
- Responsible debtors do not attempt to transfer assets to friends and family for "safe keeping" before filing bankruptcy. Transferring assets to family and friends before filing bankruptcy can create legal troubles for the debtor and their loved ones.
- Responsible debtors work closely with their bankruptcy attorney to strategize about how they will handle their bankruptcy case, including deciding on which debts they may reaffirm, which exemptions they will use and whether or not they will surrender property during bankruptcy.
- Responsible debtors appear at all required meetings during their bankruptcy case and notify their bankruptcy attorney immediately if there is a conflict that will prevent them from attending a court mandated meeting.
- Responsible debtors surrender all property and documents that are the property of the bankruptcy estate to the bankruptcy trustee in a timely fashion.
- Responsible debtors make timely payments as agreed if they are filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy.