How to File for Bankruptcy in Indiana
Anyone who is about to file for bankruptcy in Indiana should first take steps to become familiar with the local and national guidelines they must follow. Every person who is considering bankruptcy must decide which form of bankruptcy is appropriate. The factors that determine eligibility include things like income, assets, the amount of debt owed and the type of debt owed. A filer will need to submit a means test to the court early on in the process of filing. It is this test that ultimately determines the form of bankruptcy that a person is eligible to file under. It is important to be entirely honest and accurate when completing paperwork as part of a court's means test. Any attempts to hide assets or misrepresent finances could result in serious penalties.
Most people seek protection under Chapter 7 bankruptcy. This form of bankruptcy offers a discharge of all debts that are unable to be paid. Chapter 13 bankruptcy is another popular form of bankruptcy. Those who file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy will be required to set up a structured payment plan for paying back creditors over a specific period. Fishermen and farmers have the option to file for Chapter 12 bankruptcy. Debtors with large amounts of debt or business debts may qualify to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. In addition, there are other forms of bankruptcy available for a wide variety of circumstances regarding both personal and business debt. An automatic stay will be granted as soon as a petition is filed. This prevents creditors from contacting debtors or attempting to collect any debts.
The Steps to Filing for Bankruptcy in Indiana
It will be necessary for anyone seeking to obtain bankruptcy protection in the state of Indiana to submit a petition the court. A means test will then need to be submitted. Any person wishing to file for bankruptcy in Indiana must complete a credit counseling course during the six months leading up to filing a petition. The list of approved agencies that offer qualifying courses in the state of Indiana can be found here. In addition, it will be necessary to complete a debtor education course once the bankruptcy process has started. The list of approved agencies that offer qualifying courses in the state of Indiana can be found here. Another requirement for debtors during the bankruptcy process is attendance at a meeting of creditors. This meeting provides creditors with a chance to try to obtain any nonexempt assets that a debtor may possess or object to the terms of a payment plan that has been set up.
Filling for Bankruptcy in Indiana
Indiana’s bankruptcy court is divided between the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Indiana and the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana. The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Indiana has locations in Fort Wayne, Hammond, Lafayette and South Bend. The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana has locations in Evansville, Indianapolis, New Albany and Terre Haute. The cost to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Indiana is $335. The cost to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Indiana is $310. It may be possible to have this fee waived for debtors facing serious financial hardship. More information can be found here.
It is advised that all people filing for bankruptcy in Indiana seek the advice of an attorney before and during the process. The complex nature of filing for bankruptcy makes it necessary to work with a competent legal professional in most cases. Failure to complete paperwork properly or abide by the rules of the court could result in penalties, delays or a case being thrown out of court.