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Creditors Responsibilities When Someone Is Filing Bankruptcy

February 08, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 129

With the economy in the tank many Americans are struggling just to put food on the table. Filing bankruptcy has become common among many families nationwide looking for relief from overwhelming debt. While many people don't want to file bankruptcy sometimes circumstances beyond their control make filing bankruptcy the only viable option.

Once an individual has made the decision to file bankruptcy, they have certain duties and responsibilities that they must complete during the process. For example, among other things, the debtor must take the required credit counseling and financial management courses and submit the completion certificates to the court. So with all that is involved in a bankruptcy filing, do the creditors have any responsibilities that they need to follow? The answer is yes. Creditors obviously are prohibited from calling or attempting to collect on a debt when they receive notice from the bankruptcy court that a bankruptcy petition has been filed. That is known as the automatic stay. If a creditor knowingly violates the automatic stay they can charged with violating the law and face hefty fines from the bankruptcy court. But what if the creditor finds out about the bankruptcy filing over the phone from the debtor or the debtor's attorney? The creditor still must abide by the automatic stay. Many courts have ruled that oral notice of a debtor filing bankruptcy, whether from the debtor themselves or their bankruptcy attorney, creates the duty on the creditors part to immediately stop all collection efforts.

Also, under the new bankruptcy laws, creditors can now designate certain addresses to specifically receive bankruptcy notices. Debtors can use this address or the last known address that they received correspondence from the creditor during the 90 days prior to filing bankruptcy. Failing to use these addresses on the debtor's part, or neglecting to list ALL of their creditors, can cause a lot of problems. The new bankruptcy law is very clear about properly giving notice to creditors in a bankruptcy filing. This can be accomplished quite easily through credit reports that should contain a complete list of the creditors as well as official bankruptcy notice addresses. An individual can usually obtain a free copy of their credit report from the three main reporting agencies once a year. Most credit reports contain the actual address of each creditor, and some will include the "bankruptcy notice" address that the creditor has specified to use. This is not an issue for the debtor to worry much about. An experienced bankruptcy attorney will have their legal team run a credit report for the debtor and personally take care of listing all of the pertinent information regarding the creditors on the bankruptcy petition. Once the petition is filed with the bankruptcy court, the court will then send out the official notices to all of the creditors listed in the petition. If the debtor forgets a creditor or needs to add a new one after the petition has been filed, they simply contact their bankruptcy attorney who can then file an amendment with the court to add the new creditor.

The bottom line is, when filing bankruptcy, the debtor as well as the creditors have certain responsibilities that must be followed in order to have a smooth filing process. In the end, the debtor will come out on top, gaining a fresh financial start.

The author started DebtFreeBankruptcyAttorney.Com which is a website that helps individuals with debt problems by putting them in touch with a local bankruptcy attorney that specializes in filing bankruptcy under Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Check our website for more answers to bankruptcy questions and ideas on how to have a debt free future.

Source: EzineArticles
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