The Bankruptcy Process in New Jersey
Step 1: Initial Consultation
During your initial consultation we will go over your concerns, short and long term financial goals, and pressing financial and legal issues. I then explain in detail how the bankruptcy process works from start to finish, answer all of your questions, and go over costs, fees, and affordable payment options.
Step 2: Retainer Appointment
At your Retainer Appointment, you officially become my client. At this time, I ask for a down payment and we work out an installment plan for your legal fees, or, the fee is paid in full at the time of the Retainer Appointment.
Step 3: Creditor Noticing
With your consent, I pull your credit reports and prepare Notices of Representation to your creditors. The notice states that your creditors must cease contacting you and must direct all creditor calls, correspondence, and attempts to collect debts to my office.
Step 4: Petition Preparation
I immediately get to work on completing your draft bankruptcy petition. The petition is the document filed in the bankruptcy court requesting financial relief
Step 5: Payment in Full
Once you are paid in full, I will reach out for time sensitive information for your bankruptcy petition such as: your past six (6) months of pay statements through the estimated case filing date and a professional appraisal for any real estate you own.
Step 6: Petition Review
During your petition review appointment, we will review your petition line-by-line and make any corrections or changes as necessary.
Step 7: Draft Petition Review
You review your draft petition and make any additional changes to it.
Step 8: Final Petition
You sign your final petition. Once your petition is signed, it can be filed with the bankruptcy court.
Step 9. Case Filing
Your bankruptcy case is filed with the court and you are assigned a Case Number. A date for your 341 Meeting/Meeting of Creditors (your court appearance) is assigned about 28 days from when your case was filed.
Step 10: 341 Letter
I prepare a letter to you regarding the 341 Meeting date and time and any information needed by the Bankruptcy Trustee who is assigned to your case.
Step 11: 341 Meeting Preparation
The day before your 341 Meeting, we get together to do a simulated 341 Meeting so that you are comfortable with the questions that you will be asked at your hearing.
Step 12: 341 Meeting Appearance
We appear together at your 341 Meeting. If it is a Chapter 13 341, the meeting is held via Zoom. Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 341s are held via telephone conference.
Step 13: Discharge of Bankruptcy
After a statutory waiting period, your Discharge of Bankruptcy is entered by the court and you officially exit bankruptcy.