Forum Rules (Everyone Must Read!!!) (updated: 04/28/2015)

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About to file Chapter 7 Pro Se

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  • About to file Chapter 7 Pro Se

    Ive been browsing this forum for a bit now it has been a godsend. . I can honestly say that his forum has given me the courage I needed to commit myself to getting out from underneath. The collective expertise here is astounding and the personal accounts have been compelling.

    I'm hoping that one or two of you will be able to read my story and throw out a bit of bespoke wisdom to help me along my way.


    I am currently unemployed. I lost my job 5 months ago. I have no assets. My unemployment insurance just covers my living expenses . I have about $1200 in credit card debt . I have a $55K in student loan debt that Ive been repaying but is now in deferment. The biggie: I have $220K in old (pre 2010 tax year) tax debt. Until recently I was content to defer the student loan, pay minimum on cards and place my tax debt into "currently not collectible status" until I found another job. Then I would continue paying the $3 K a month to the IRS

    However two months ago a paternity test confirmed that I have a 3 year old son I had never known about. After finding out about my son I chose to go in a different direction financially . So I decided to go full speed ahead with Chapter 7 . Fresh start.

    After a lot of research (and since I'm broke) I decided to file Pro Se. I paid for a bankruptcy software package that seems pretty solid. The process was time consuming but with the help of the software Ive finished filling out all the necessary paperwork and am ready to print and file. Belts and braces time.

    I have a couple of niggling concerns that Ive been researching and would appreciate some help on if anyone is inclined.

    ( deep breath )


    Installment agreement for filing fee

    I intend to file my paperwork and request an installment agreement for the fee ; paying over 4 weeks with a bit of my unemployment insurance each week. Will this installment agreement delay the process in any way ?

    6 month average income

    I had a pretty decent job before I became unemployed. So even now 5 months into unemployment, my 6 month average salary is above the NY median. I know that since most of my debts are non-consumer the means test doesn't apply. But is this a red flag to the trustee ? Should I wait the extra month to have my six month rolling average income fall below the NY median ? Or am I worrying about too much ?

    2013 Tax Returns instead of 2014

    I haven't filed my 2014 taxes yet since I haven't received W2's from my last employer yet. Since I want to file in the next few days can I submit my completed 2013 returns when filing instead of waiting to file 2014 returns to submit ? Or is this another red flag when the 341 comes around.

    My Boy

    I'm not paying any child support . My son's mother is aware that I'm out of work isn't looking for anything until I get back on my feet. Do I even mention my son as a dependent ? Will it help ? Or will this only be a something that sticks out as an obstacle to a successful 341 and discharge. Any red flags I should look out for ? I think that my case is really simple since I have no assets to speak of and no cash on hand at all.

    Thanks very much for the help
    Last edited by jgeddes; 02-04-2015, 09:40 PM.

  • #2
    Installment agreement for filing fee - Will this installment agreement delay the process in any way ?

    6 month average income - my 6 month average salary is above the NY median. I know that since most of my debts are non-consumer the means test doesn't apply. But is this a red flag to the trustee ?
    If you are a “non-consumer” filer the 6 month average has no impact. Schedule I and J are the guiding factors.

    2013 Tax Returns instead of 2014
    The Trustee may want to see both. He/she will absolutely want a copy of 2014 when they are done. If you are entitled to a 2014 refund the trustee gets the $$ unless there is some exemption that covers it. However, my guess is that any tax refund for 2014 will be kept by the taxing agency as a setoff.

    My Boy
    Your son has no impact on the case other than to disclose whether or not you owe support. If you are required to pay support you may need to supply the Trustee with a copy of the support order and the contact information for the mother. If you are behind in support payments that obligation is listed on Schedule E. If you have a monthly order to pay support the amount should be listed on Schedule J.

    And. . . welcome to the forum.



    • #3
      Yes, welcome to BKForum. You are in good hands with Des!
      Chapter 7 (No Asset/Non-Consumer) Filed (Pro Se) 7/08 (converted from Chapter 13 - 2/10)
      Status: (Auto) Discharged and Closed! 5/10
      Visit My BKForum Blog: justbroke's Blog

      I am not an attorney. Any advice provided is not legal advice.


      • #4
        Thanks very much for the responses. I'm filing on Monday. Fingers crossed.


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