Your conduct and behavior before and during bankruptcy can damage or even be fatal to your case. On the other hand, understanding your rights and responsibilities can minimize your risks. Consult with a bankruptcy lawyer Arcadia CA to help you navigate the pitfalls commonly encountered by those seeking bankruptcy protection.
DO take bankruptcy seriously. It is a privilege and courts take a very dim view of abuse.
DO be honest. It is against the law to lie in bankruptcy proceedings and your filing is under penalty of perjury. You are sacrificing a small portion of your privacy to get a discharge of your debts. If you lie on your petition, or if you conceal assets, you could get in very serious trouble.
DO be honest and forthcoming with your attorney. Even if it is embarrassing, even if it makes you look like an silly or incompetent, it is better if your attorney knows.
DO give your attorney EVERYTHING in your relevant financial files, again even if it is embarrassing or incriminating. If you have the document, the odds are someone else does too.
DO inform your bankruptcy attorney of ALL your creditor, this includes family members and friends.
DO continue making payments on vehicles which you intend to keep. Secured debts like car loans do not discharge in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, so if you want to keep the vehicle you must continue to make the payments.
DO adjust the amount withheld from your pay for taxes to get to as close as possible to getting no refund or owing. You want to be as close to zero as possible. A tax refund is an asset in Chapter 7 and can be used to pay creditors. Also, a Chapter 13 Tax refund may be withheld to pay creditors in your Chapter 13.
DO close or keep minimal amount in your checking and saving accounts at any banks where you also have a credit card or line of credit. If you stop paying on your credit card or line of credit, the bank may go into your checking and savings account and pay your credit card/line of credit. You may want to consider canceling automatic withdraw privileges or closing the corresponding checking or savings accounts.