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NOLO Book: How to file Ch 7 now available!

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  • #46
    No, they do not use SSNs in passports. I have both a blue and brown passport (civilian and gov't) and neither uses SSN.

    As for the apartment issue, I have read that you have to list the lease as an expense however if you are not behind on payments (which you should not be...housing should come before CCs) they should not find out about your BK at all. I renewed my lease and don't think they bothered with credit checks since they did one when I moved in and my checks don't bounce.
    First consult: You go now, no CH 7 for you. You spent entire buffet. 13 has a 95 percent payback. (Owwwch) On to next consult....

    Comment


    • #47
      I purchased the 14th edition of this book, published in 2007. I am filing chapter 7 (pro se) now, does anyone know if there are any significant changes in the BK law or the interpretation of the law that warrants the purchase of a 2009 edition of the same book?

      From the comparison of the first free sample chapter of the 2009 edition on NOLO site with the 2007 edition, I can not find any notable changes, but that of course does not guarantee that there won't be any significant changes in the other chapters of the book. Thanks so much in advance!

      Comment


      • #48
        I filed in march using this book, worried sick

        I went to paralegal school for a year and half but never got real world experience. Im a full time student who is on government assitance (single mom). i am getting ready to graduate, and I had to take care of this so i can find a job and get off assitance (without worrying about garnishment). I have about 45k in unsecured credit card debt. I have no real property or anything like that.

        I took over 40 hours altogether filling out the initial paperwork , etc.. idk who siad it only takes 10 dollars of copies, but it wound up being more like 60 for me. I kept on maknig mistakes and having to re do everything. The book didn't specify how to list food stamps, student loans, etc.. as income. I wound up including everything on my schedule I form (income) including my day care assitance, food stamps, and housing (counting all as "income"). I didn't however put my student loans. I did put all my grants though and a continuation sheet explaining that i didnt use my loans, and i dont have a lawyer.

        There was also a discrepancy between the exemptions in the book and the ones i found on the Statutes. i hope i found the right webpage for teh statutes because i updated everything myself.

        I wound up paying the $299 filing fee. The fee waiver didn't work out for me. The amount listed in income that included the government assitance I'm recieving put me at too high a number, and I guess they didnt' consider the source of the income.

        I've called the court several times and get a lot of " go ask your lawyer" or rudeness when i say i filed pro se. They keep refering me to the local bankruptcy rules which are hard to understand. I got rude one point and yelled at the lady saying "look i cant help it cant afford a lawyer. this isnt' fun for me either, you dont have to be so rude" (she was sympathetic after that)

        I also had to file an amendemnt. this added 5 more hours of paperwork, not to mention more copies and printing at the library (10 cents a page). i had to mail a bunch of documents to each creditor added. it costed me an additional $26 filing fee.

        I couldn't get a straight answer as to wether i can do my pre discharge credit counseling BEFORE the 341 meeting, so i wound up getting that out of the way and sending it (my 341 meeting is not for three more weeks).

        since doing this im a nervous wreck. I also am fullt ime student depending on student loans to support me and my child. Well, now I'm getting mixed answers as to wether i will be able to barrow for summer, while my bankruptcy is still pending (hence what brought me to the forum - google searches).

        If i could re do everything, I would have just waited until i could afford a cheap lawyer. HOWEVER I will try to let you guys know how it turns out and if this worked for me or not. if it gets discharged, then i will be saying "yay i did it without a laweyr and saved all that money!"

        sidenote: I used the edition of the book that came out directly after the law changed in 2007.

        Comment


        • #49
          Best to use current editions

          I am using the Nolo book to file chapter 7 pro se. I recommend anyone doing so use the most current edition. They update yearly for a reason.

          I ordered it through my local library system using inter-library loan. The librarian said they ordered 3 2010 editions because it is a frequently sought book all of a sudden! They have a wait list for it now.

          Most public libraries can order books from other libraries, even from ones outside their system, if they do not stock them at that branch. Talk to the librarian.

          It is best to use the most up to date version available (true for ANY reference book) and if you go to Nolo's website they have updates posted for changes in the rules since the latest edition was printed.

          You can also look up recent changes to local rules on most court system websites. Here in eastern Washington (9th circuit) they post all form changes, rules, etc. on the website. Asking polite and intelligent "procedural" questions of the clerks gets you a long ways down the road, too.

          As far as I can tell BK law changes frequently (almost weekly!) and using the most up to date info and being hyper-meticulous in filling out the forms is the best way to assure a fairly smooth filing.

          Anyone should be able to get this book free from a library - free books is good! Just like the free debt counseling was good - Thank you Tides Foundation! Saved me 50 bucks I don't have.

          Comment


          • #50
            I have this book and I have to say it is worth the $45. It has been a great help!

            Comment


            • #51
              Filing On Your Own Is Generally A BAD Idea

              Hi All,

              I just wanted to say what no doubt has often been said:

              In in a "simple" Chapter 7, filing on your own is often a bad idea. The laws on income vs. expenses only look simple. Only a good attorney knows for sure what flies in your district.

              A big problem is that the difference between a Chapter 7 and a Chapter 13 can be as little (at least in 2009, not sure about now) as $110.00 in allowable monthly expenses. A good attorney who knows the courts in your district knows if your expenses are going to fly (and no, in the eyes of the trustree those are not always the same figures as the federal lists of reasonable expenses for stuff). The federal law has never been clear on the treatment of student loans as a monthly expense even though you cannot file on them, and that varies widely from district to district.

              There ARE hoops to jump through to make it look like you will have virtually no "disposable" income after a BK even if you are well within the income limits to file a 7 without the presumption of abuse arising. Even having the wrong attorney, let alone no attorney can get you in plenty of trouble under the current laws.

              Please, reconsider the do-it-yourself route, particularly if you have an income near the Chapter 7 limits for your area. YES people do it successfully all the time, but it would absolutely stink to get pushed into a 13 just because you did not have a good attorney. Mine cost 1800 in a simple case in MN, and I would spend every penny all over again. I delayed filing for a long year at least and dealt with all the wicked creditor calls, but it was well worth it!
              Filed: 9/9/2009
              341: 10/13, went well!
              Discharged 12/17/2009

              Comment


              • #52
                I once bought a car and an automotive manual because I thought it would fun and easy to do it yourself (diy). After spending 4 hours changing my own oil (and getting grease all over myself) I felt both a sense of pride and a feeling that I rather just drive the thing and have someone else take care of the maintenance of it. Same with bankruptcy. If you have a choice - hire an attorney. If you can't afford one (in that case perhaps your local county bar can help) then the Nolo book (or similar book) is second (though a distant) best. Just like changing your oil some folks are more inclined then others and depending on the car (here your cases, questions, specifics, flags, etc.) one person's experience may be good and for others it may be challenging. Just something to think about....

                Comment


                • #53
                  Bankruptcy

                  I feel for all you who are struggling. Unfortunately, this is where you must educate yourselves and not become victims to the sharks.

                  Loan modification by anyone other than a licensed attorney (and sometimes even then) is probably being performed by an idiot out to make a quick buck. Some will just take your money and not even send a fax. Be careful.

                  Credit repair companies are the biggest scam artists; they do nothing you cannot do yourself. Disputing valid debts/late payments by sending letter after letter,may temporarily remove the negative information, but the creditor always has a legal right to restore the negative information at any time in the future when they verify the accuracy.

                  Debt consolidation is the second biggest scam. You pay back more than you could if you just settled it yourself and interest continues to be charged until everything is paid in full. Those that fall victim to this are usually the trusting, or those to lazy to educate themselves (sorry if I insulted a few of you who used debt consolidation and are still in debt).

                  Bankruptcy was enacted to give good people in financial trouble a fresh start. It is usually the cheapest and quickest way to start over in life. Yet banks, credit card companies, and debt consolidation companies spend billions on advertising so that the general public thinks that bankruptcy is evil! It doesn't ruin your credit for life (or even 10 years), you can get credit cards again (almost immediately), and you will qualify to buy a home and new car again (car almost immediately and house in as little as 2 years).

                  Instead of struggling, go speak with a bankruptcy attorney. I set up payment plans for my clients that need them. There are options, you just need to take action.

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Originally posted by leena View Post
                    Hi All,

                    I just wanted to say what no doubt has often been said:

                    In in a "simple" Chapter 7, filing on your own is often a bad idea. The laws on income vs. expenses only look simple. Only a good attorney knows for sure what flies in your district.

                    A big problem is that the difference between a Chapter 7 and a Chapter 13 can be as little (at least in 2009, not sure about now) as $110.00 in allowable monthly expenses. A good attorney who knows the courts in your district knows if your expenses are going to fly (and no, in the eyes of the trustree those are not always the same figures as the federal lists of reasonable expenses for stuff). The federal law has never been clear on the treatment of student loans as a monthly expense even though you cannot file on them, and that varies widely from district to district.

                    There ARE hoops to jump through to make it look like you will have virtually no "disposable" income after a BK even if you are well within the income limits to file a 7 without the presumption of abuse arising. Even having the wrong attorney, let alone no attorney can get you in plenty of trouble under the current laws.

                    Please, reconsider the do-it-yourself route, particularly if you have an income near the Chapter 7 limits for your area. YES people do it successfully all the time, but it would absolutely stink to get pushed into a 13 just because you did not have a good attorney. Mine cost 1800 in a simple case in MN, and I would spend every penny all over again. I delayed filing for a long year at least and dealt with all the wicked creditor calls, but it was well worth it!

                    Oh, if I had an asset case I would definitely use an attorney. My boyfriend is preparing the paperwork for me (all right, so he graduated from medical school not law school!) and I am filing pro se.

                    There is no way I could ever have the money for an attorney in NJ. Where would I get the money?

                    I don't worry about having to file a Chapter 13 because my monthly income is almost $4,000 a month UNDER the average monthly income for my state!

                    I will soon be filing and I can't wait to get this over and move on with my life.
                    Filed BK 7 Pro Se: August 2010 341 Meeting: September 2010
                    November 2010
                    Closed: January 2011!!!

                    Comment


                    • #55
                      Coupon code T190 is worth $10 off on the NOLO site. I just purchased the digital version and it came to $14.99. Not a bad deal.

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        Just to add to the mix: I bought the book plus the ebook. Worth every penny. I filed pro se, and once I got into the swing of things, it became easier and easier. However, having the book available was a huge comfort. Well worth it.

                        In my county last year, pro se filings were over 4200, up 81% from the previous year. 50 bucks or so beats a couple of thousand to an attorney....

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Originally posted by leena View Post
                          Hi All,

                          I just wanted to say what no doubt has often been said:

                          In in a "simple" Chapter 7, filing on your own is often a bad idea. The laws on income vs. expenses only look simple. Only a good attorney knows for sure what flies in your district.

                          Please, reconsider the do-it-yourself route, particularly if you have an income near the Chapter 7 limits for your area. YES people do it successfully all the time, but it would absolutely stink to get pushed into a 13 just because you did not have a good attorney. Mine cost 1800 in a simple case in MN, and I would spend every penny all over again. I delayed filing for a long year at least and dealt with all the wicked creditor calls, but it was well worth it!
                          It's relative. I filed pro se with no difficulties. My 341 meeting could have set a record--under 90 seconds. I also know of three others who have filed pro se with little to no difficulties. Among the four of us, that's about 6, 7 or 8 thousand bucks saved.
                          In my own 341 meeting, there were at least 5 before me who were pro se. And in my county in South Florida, over 4200 pro see cases were filed last year, an 81% increase over the previous year.

                          A deep breath, one step at a time, and most people can, in my opinion, file a successful pro se BK7.... Again, it's relative.

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            I agree wityh to all of you... nice information sharing everyone..

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Chapter 7 is an easy way to get rid of your bankruptcy, but there are some rules for filing to the chapter 7.
                              [url removed by admin]

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