Persels & Associates Outlines the Crucial Steps Before You File Personal Bankruptcy

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Consumer bankruptcy filings hit their highest monthly peak in March since Congress overhauled the system in 2005. What should consumers do BEFORE they file personal bankruptcy?

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At Persels & Associates we understand the needs and circumstances of those who are in debt. We are here to tell you that you are not alone and there are steps you can take to protect yourself.

The number of filings rose to 149,268, 34% higher than February’s filings, according to recent consumer data. Consumer bankruptcy filings hit their highest monthly peak in March since Congress overhauled the system in 2005. The March tally was also 23% higher than the same time a year ago.

The bankruptcy lawyers at Persels & Associates are committed to helping people file for bankruptcy, creating a new opportunity in life and a clean slate for the future, without the weight of preexisting debt.

With that in mind and with new laws in place what should consumers know before they file personal bankruptcy?

“Filing for bankruptcy no longer has a negative stigma,” said Joe Cosentini of Persels & Associates. “We understand the needs and circumstances of those who are unfortunately in debt. We are here to tell you that you are not alone- the recent and ongoing economic crisis has left many individuals in debt.”

The Federal Reserve reported that the revolving debt has reached a record high of $943.5 billion. For many Americans living during this economic recession, debt is an inevitable path. The underlying goal of the federal bankruptcy laws enacted by Congress is to give debtors a financial fresh start from burdensome debts.

Filing for Bankruptcy
If circumstances dictate that bankruptcy is your best option, the lawyers at Persels & Associates will help you file for bankruptcy. The United States bankruptcy laws are intended to help debtors achieve a fresh start by relieving most of their debts. For most consumers there are two types of bankruptcy available. Chapter 7 bankruptcies, sometimes called liquidation bankruptcy and Chapter 13 bankruptcy, sometimes called debt reorganization. The chapter you file under is determined by your unique circumstances. Not everyone will qualify to file Chapter 7 and not everyone can afford the sometimes-high payments required by a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. Currently Persels & Associates only represent debtors under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy code but if a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is advisable, we will help you find the right lawyer.

If and when bankruptcy becomes a consideration, you will be able to speak to one of Persels & Associates knowledgeable bankruptcy attorneys to learn how you will be affected.

Crucial Steps to Take Before Filing for Bankruptcy
Filing for Bankruptcy, even preparing to discuss your options in Bankruptcy is a complex procedure. The attorney you speak with will need to know great detail about your recent income, your debts, and the things you own or are buying, and who lives in your household, amongst other things. When contemplating Bankruptcy you should begin to gather certain paperwork that will assist the attorney in effectively analyzing your unique situation. The following list is something helpful to have with you when you speak to the attorney.

  •     All financial records. This includes copies of the following: £ Six months of bank statements for all bank accounts
  •     Six months of paystubs
  •     Latest statements/records of all assets, including 401(k)/retirement statements, etc.
  •     Most recent bills from every creditor
  •     Most recent payment coupons for vehicles (lease or purchase), real estate, and student loans
  •     Bills, invoices or receipts for purchases in the last year
  •     Files from previous litigation, including especially any judgments that have been entered against you
  •     Files from previous attorneys
  •     Any divorce decree or other court order that requires you to pay child support or maintenance
  •     Any other divorce or court decree entered in the last 24 months
  •     Canceled Checks for any expense you cannot otherwise document
  •     ALL your correspondence with or regarding creditors, especially threat letter
  •     ALL insurance policies
  •     Tax returns for the last four years
  •     Vehicle titles
  •     Your lease or mortgage
  •     Any promissory notes you have signed
  •     Other documents relating to debts you owe other people
  •     Any proof that anyone owes you money
  •     Any lawsuits with which you have been served
  •     A copy of your driver’s license

About Persels & Associates
Persels & Associates, LLC, and its entities are pioneers in the field of offering "unbundled" legal services to individuals who cannot afford traditional legal services. As Americans credit debt rose, Persels & Associates bridged the "gap" between consumers and their debtors. Today, Persels & Associates employs 25 central office staff attorneys and over 150 additional attorneys in the 50 states while representing over 40,000 clients nationwide. For more information, please visit http://www.perselsandassociates.com.

Media contact:
Karen McGagh, KMC
443-632-4217

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Karen McGagh
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