Featured News 2015 Required Courses for Bankruptcy Debtors

Required Courses for Bankruptcy Debtors

If you are struggling with crushing debt, bankruptcy may allow you to erase debt or make a plan to repay your debts. A bankruptcy case can be filed by an individual, by spouses, or by a corporation or other business entity. Regardless of the type of bankruptcy, they are all handled in the federal courts and governed by the rules in the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

If you are considering filing for bankruptcy protection, you may have heard about the credit counseling and debtor education courses. These do exist and if you file an individual bankruptcy, you will be required to complete them.

In a nutshell, all individual bankruptcy filers are required to complete the following: 1) pre-bankruptcy credit counseling and 2) pre-discharge debtor education. These courses are not provided at the same time. You take credit counseling before you file for bankruptcy, and you take the debtor education course after the bankruptcy is filed.

You Must Obtain Certificates of Completion

Before a bankruptcy is discharged, the debtor must obtain a certificate of completion for the credit counseling and the debtor education course. The only way to obtain these certificates is through credit counseling organizations and debtor education course providers who have been approved by the U.S. Trustee Program.

Laws are Different in Alabama and North Carolina

If you live in Alabama or North Carolina, the rules are different. Under the current law, the U.S. Trustee Program does not operate in either state. Instead, the bankruptcy administrators approve the pre-bankruptcy credit counseling organizations and the pre-discharge debtor education course providers.

Currently, the United States Bankruptcy Administration Program, established by the federal judiciary serves the six federal judicial districts in Alabama and North Carolina. This program is separate from the U.S. trustee program in the Department of Justice.

To obtain information on the credit counseling agencies and debtor education course providers in your state, contact a qualified bankruptcy lawyer.

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