Filing for bankruptcy is not a very long process; it's just a tedious one. When you first meet with a bankruptcy lawyer, you will find that the lawyer does a lot of the filing work and helps you dodge calls from bill collectors, but the rest of the work is on you. The following information outlines everything you will need to do and everything you will need to collect for your bankruptcy case to get the best results.
Itemized List of Everything You Own and Its Rummage Sale Value
The longest and most tedious of the bankruptcy tasks is the list of everything you own and its rummage sale value. Some things can be grouped and priced together, such as books or DVDs, while everything else has to be listed as a separate item. The inventory of your life is required to show your creditors that you have nothing of substantial value that you can sell at a rummage sale and use proceeds to pay your bills. If you do not know what a fair rummage sale value is on everything, just list items or number of grouped items, and your lawyer can list the values.
Itemized List of Debts and Credit Cards
Most people filing for bankruptcy have around ten thousand dollars or more of credit card debt that they cannot manage. Your lawyer will request a complete list of all of your credit cards, your loan debts, school debts, car debts, and mortgages, if applicable. Only some of your debt can be discharged in bankruptcy proceedings, but the rest of your debts have to be listed so that your creditors can see what a burden your debts are to you.
Itemized List of Assets
Most people do not have any assets to list, beyond a home and a car. If you have more than one car, you have to list the other cars in your possession. Likewise, if you have a vacation home or timeshare property, you have to list these as well. Any financial investments or assets and any recreational vehicles (such as ATVs, RVs, snowmobiles, boats, etc.) all have to be listed as assets as well. Be aware that these assets may be liquidated to pay debts and that a judge can order you to do so if a creditor is refusing to accept your bankruptcy claim. If you have no assets at all, you have nothing to worry about.