How To File Bankruptcy for Free in Connecticut – Upsolve

Filing bankruptcy can be expensive, but it doesn ’ t have to be. You can eliminate the biggest bankruptcy cost — lawyer fees — by preparing your documents and filing your bankruptcy yourself. This guide covers what you ’ ll want to file bankruptcy in the Old Line department of state and what to expect from each step of the process .

Collect Your Connecticut Bankruptcy Documents

Whether you ’ re plan to hire a lawyer, use Upsolve ’ s release file tool, or prepare your bankruptcy on your own, your first step is to gather the documents you ’ ll need. Your bankruptcy forms are how you explain your fiscal position to the bankruptcy court. In these forms, you must list all your debts, including the balance and the creditor ’ randomness name and contact information. You must besides provide data about your income and living expenses. The pursuit documents contain a lot of the necessary information :

  • report statements, bills, collection letters, or documents from debt collection lawsuits .
  • A holocene credit report from one or more of the major credit agency ( Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion ). If you ’ re using Upsolve ’ s dislodge cock, Upsolve will get a credit reputation for you.
  • Bank statements for all your determine and savings accounts for the past six months or more .
  • Paycheck stubs or a printout from your employer showing your crude pay and anything deducted from your check ( like taxes or indemnity ). If possible, try to gather pay information for the past six months .
  • Tax returns for the past two years .

You may not be able to locate all these documents. At a minimal, though, you must have your two most recent tax returns, pay stubs for the past 60 days, and your most late bank statement. These documents are required by law .

Take a Credit Counseling Course

Before you can file bankruptcy in Connecticut, you must take a credit counseling course. This course is required for everyone who files bankruptcy, even if you ’ re charge with a lawyer. This course is designed to inform debtors about the unlike chapters of bankruptcy ampere well as the alternative types of debt relief available. You must take the path from a state-approved supplier. Most providers offer the path over the telephone, on-line, or both. normally, Money Management International besides provides an in-person class at its East Berlin location, but the in-person option is temporarily suspended due to COVID-19. Providers charge a range of fees for the credit counseling course, with most fees falling between $ 10 and $ 50. many providers will waive this fee if you qualify based on your income. You ’ ll get a security from your provider for completing the recognition counseling path. You must file this certificate with the bankruptcy court at the same time you file your early paperwork. The certificate is valid for 180 days after it ’ south issued. If you don ’ thyroxine file bankruptcy within 180 days after the date on your security, you ’ ll have to take ( and pay for ) the naturally again .

Complete the Bankruptcy Forms

Filling out your bankruptcy forms is the most challenging part of filing your bankruptcy, but it will be much easier now that you have all the necessary documents on pass. Most of the forms you ’ ll need are union forms. These forms are rid to download and are the same in every submit. You don ’ t need to download every union form available, though. The Connecticut bankruptcy motor hotel ’ second guide has a list of the forms you need. The federal forms are available as fillable PDFs, so you can complete them on any computer. Don ’ t forget to download the federal instruction guide, which will help you fill out the forms correctly. If you ’ re file using Upsolve ’ s release tool, you don ’ t need to find and download the right forms. rather, you ’ ll answer a series of on-line questions, and Upsolve will use your answers to prepare your forms for you. If you ’ re file with an lawyer, you ’ ll typically bring in your documents and complete a questionnaire. Your lawyer ’ randomness office will use the information you entered and your documents to complete your bankruptcy forms .

Get Your Filing Fee

The Connecticut bankruptcy court charges a $ 338 filing fee to file a chapter 7 bankruptcy case. This fee is the lapp for all U.S. bankruptcy courts. You ’ ll pay the file fee at the lapp time you file your bankruptcy forms with the court clerk. You may need to wait to file your shell until you have the full fee measure. In some cases, you must file in a rush, and you don ’ t have meter to save up the whole file tip. For example, if a creditor is garnishing your wages, you need to file right away, so the Bankruptcy Code ’ s automatic rifle stay planning will take effect and stop the garnishment. In these situations, you can ask the motor hotel to let you pay the file fee in installments. To do this, complete the application phase and charge it along with your other bankruptcy paperwork. installation payments should lone be used in emergencies, though. If you miss a requital, the motor hotel can dismiss your event. Wait to pay the whole filing fee at once if you can. If your family income is less than 150 % of the Connecticut poverty guidelines, you may be eligible for a fee release. To request a release, complete the release application mannequin and submit it to the court with your other forms. Check the Connecticut Fee Waiver Eligibility table below to see if you qualify .

If you ’ re using Upsolve ’ s filing tool, Upsolve will send you all your completed forms as a single document, complete with dividers showing you which pages you need to sign. If you ’ ra file on your own, you ’ ll indigence to print each completed bankruptcy form individually and put them in the compensate ordering. Use this checklist to make sure you print every shape you need. Your forms must be printed in black ink on even white, letter-size ( 8.5 ten 11 inches ) newspaper. Don ’ t print double-sided. even though you ’ ll be using a lot of paper, printing double-sided interferes with the motor hotel staff ’ mho ability to scan your bankruptcy forms into the court ’ south electronic charge system. Check each page carefully and sign in each place there is a touch box, using black or aristocratic ink .

File Your Forms With the Connecticut Bankruptcy Court

merely accredited attorneys can use the Connecticut bankruptcy court ’ randomness electronic filing system. You ’ ll indigence to file your forms by taking them or mailing them to the correct court clerk ’ randomness position. The woo encourages in-person file whenever possible, but you may mail your petition and filing tip if necessity. The District of Connecticut Bankruptcy Court has three locations throughout the state. If you live in Litchfield or Fairfield counties, you should use the Bridgeport location. If you live in Hartford, New London, Tolland, or Windham counties, you should use the Hartford localization. If you live in New Haven or Middlesex counties, you should use the New Haven localization. You ’ ll need to bring either your full filing fee or an application for a release or episode payments. The salesclerk ’ randomness office is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9:00 ante meridiem to 12:30 post meridiem and from 1:30 post meridiem to 4:00 p.m. During the COVID-19 pandemic, you may file your forms, together with your filing tip or application for release or installment payments, in a safe-deposit located outside the salesclerk ’ mho office. Put your requital in an envelope in concert with your other paperwork. Don ’ t leave loosen checks or documents in the safe-deposit. Forms submitted in the safe-deposit may not be processed until the future day. The court may continue to take early irregular measures as necessary due to COVID-19.

Mail Documents to Your Trustee

Every bankruptcy that ’ mho filed in Connecticut is assigned to a bankruptcy regent. The woo clerk will give you a notice with your regent ’ second name and contact information when you file your case. If you filed by chain mail or safe-deposit, the woo will mail the notice to you. The trustee ’ sulfur job is to look over your bankruptcy forms and make sure nothing is missing or incomplete. They ’ re besides required to verify that the information listed on your forms is accurate, specially information about your income and expenses. The Bankruptcy Code and the District of Connecticut ’ s Local Rules require you to send copies of certain documents to your regent at least seven days before your scheduled 341 meet ( more about that late ). These documents allow the regent to verify your information. They include :

  • Your two most recently filed federal income tax returns .
  • A bank instruction that includes the go steady you filed your bankruptcy encase. For case, if you filed your case on August 16, use the statement for August 1-31. If you have more than one deposit account, you need a statement for each history .
  • Pay information or pay up stubs ( sometimes called “ pay advices ” ) for the 60 days before the date you filed your case .

Depending on your lawsuit and your trustee, the regent may request early documents in summation to the ones listed above. normally, your trustee will send you a letter shortly after your shell is filed telling you precisely what documents they need and where you should send them .

Take a Debtor Education Course

Everyone who files personal bankruptcy, including people who file with a lawyer, must complete a debtor education run to be eligible for a dispatch. This class is besides sometimes called a fiscal management run, and it covers :

  • Basic money management skills ,
  • smart fiscal strategies, and
  • coarse money mistakes to avoid .

The naturally was designed to help Chapter 7 debtors make the most of their fresh start after bankruptcy. You must take this course from a state-approved provider. Most providers offer the course on-line, by telephone, or both. You ’ ll receive a certificate for completing the course. Your course supplier may file this certificate with the court for you. If not, download Form 423 and fill it out based on the data on your certificate. then sign the form and file it with the woo. You don ’ t have to complete the debtor education run before your 341 meet, but it ’ s normally easier to get it over with early so you don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate forget about it. If you don ’ thyroxine file your form 423 within 60 days after your 341 meet, the court may close your case without a discharge. Without a discharge, you ’ ll still owe all your debts .

Attend Your 341 Meeting

After you file your bankruptcy, you ’ ll get a notice letting you know when your 341 meet will be held. This meeting is your casual to meet with your trustee, confirm your identity, and answer any questions the regent might have. The meet normally happens 21-45 days after you file your case. It ’ mho called the 341 meet because it ’ south required by department 341 ( a ) of the Bankruptcy Code. It ’ sulfur besides sometimes called the meet of creditors. The court will notify your creditors about the meet, but they normally don ’ triiodothyronine serve. Your 341 meet will be held at the courthouse where you filed your case. It ’ s not a court hear, though, and there won ’ triiodothyronine be a judge present. You must attend this meet. You need to bring a valid, government-issued photograph ID and proof of your Social Security number. Most chapter 7 meetings take 10 minutes or less. After your 341 touch, the court will normally grant your discharge within 60-90 days .

Dealing with Your Car

Your options for dealing with your car in a chapter 7 lawsuit are different depending on whether you lease or own your car and whether you owe any money on it. If you ‘re still paying on a car loanword, you can choose to keep your car and continue making your payments as if you hadn ’ metric ton filed bankruptcy. You must be current on the payments to choose this choice. The lender may ask you to sign a reassertion agreement.

If you owe more than your car is worth, or if you ’ ra stick with an car loanword you can ’ metric ton yield, you can besides choose to surrender the car to the lender. You won ’ thymine owe anything else on the lend. After bankruptcy, you can look for a vehicle that fits within your budget. If you own your car absolve and clear, whether you can keep it depends on the car ’ s current market value. If your car ’ south prize is higher than the available exemption limits, the regent may decide to sell your vehicle to pay some of your debt. Your available exemption amount could be different depending on whether you choose the express or federal exemptions, but the utmost sum of exemptions you could claim for your car is $ 17,900 ( using the union personal property exemptions ). If you ’ ra leasing your car, you can choose to keep the vehicle and cover with the lease as common. This is called assuming the lease. You must be stream on your lease payments to assume your lease. You can besides use bankruptcy to escape an unaffordable rent agreement. This is called rejecting the lease. You return the car to the lessor and don ’ t owe any extra payments or fees .

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