Whether you’re filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, a summary of your financial history will be required from you. Information concerning your employment, expenses, and much more will determine whether you qualify for the type of bankruptcy you are filing. Along with pertinent documents, you will also be required to submit a Statement of Financial Affairs, which is also known as the Official Form 7. This form is available on the U.S. Court’s website.
Preparing Your Chapter 7 Filing’s Paperwork
As you file for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy with the help of your bankruptcy attorney, it will largely be your responsibility to provide the information that composes the Statement of Financial Affairs. Recent transactions, transfers of property, and payments must all be noted in this document. While the Statement of Financial Affairs is largely straight forward, it’s imperative to consult your bankruptcy attorney if you have any questions about the paperwork. Failing to provide thorough or accurate information could result in the dismissal of your Chapter 7 case or prosecution.
Two questions that you may find confusing in the Statement of Financial Affairs document:
· Question 3. Here, you must distinguish between payments to your creditors and payments to insiders. Insiders are generally defined as relatives or business associates while all other lenders are considered creditors. If you are unsure about whether a lender is a creditor or insider, be sure to discuss the situation thoroughly with your bankruptcy attorney.
· Question 10. If you’ve transferred property, money, or any other asset to a friend or family member two years prior to filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must list it here. Failing to do so can be considered fraud, as many people try to hide their assets. Combing through previous transactions with your bankruptcy attorney will ensure this is properly documented.
Upon completing the Statement of Financial Affairs for your Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must sign the form, agreeing that the information you provided is accurate and honest. Any false statements could result in 5 years of imprisonment, a $500,000 fine, and in some cases both. Having your Dayton bankruptcy attorney review your paperwork is an excellent way to protect yourself.