How to File for Bankruptcy in Kentucky
The process of filing for bankruptcy in the state of Kentucky parallels the process of filing throughout the rest of the country. It is necessary for anyone planning to file for bankruptcy protection to become familiar with the federal requirements involved. In addition, it is important to become familiar with the specific rules and requirements that go along with filing for bankruptcy in the state of Kentucky. A debtor must make a decision about which form of bankruptcy is appropriate before they can officially file with the court. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the most common form of bankruptcy. This form of bankruptcy allows for debts to be discharged. Filers who are unable to qualify for Chapter 7 bankruptcy due to having the means to pay back creditors may qualify for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. This form of bankruptcy allows a debtor to create a structured payment plan for paying back creditors. Fishermen and farmers have the option to file for Chapter 12 bankruptcy. Debtors with business debts or unusually large debts may qualify to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
The actual form of bankruptcy that a debtor files under isn’t necessarily a matter of choice. A means test must be submitted to the court early in the process. This evaluation takes into account things like income, assets, liabilities and other factors to determine which form of bankruptcy is appropriate.
Starting the Bankruptcy Process in Kentucky
The bankruptcy process formally begins when a debtor files a petition with the court. This petition then triggers something called an automatic stay. An automatic stay serves to prevent creditors from attempting to contact debtors or collect debts. It is necessary to prepare for filing for bankruptcy months in advance. Debtors must complete a credit counseling course with an agency that is approved in the state of Kentucky during the six months leading up to filing. A list of approved course providers can be found here. It will also be necessary to complete a debtor education course after filing for bankruptcy. The list of approved course providers can be found here. All debtors will be required to attend what is known as a meeting of creditors toward the end of the bankruptcy process. This meeting is usually very short. However, there is a possibility that creditors may attempt to prove that a debtor has nonexempt assets that can be paid. In addition, creditors may object to the terms of a payment plan that has been drawn up by the court.
The Specifics of Bankruptcy in Kentucky
Kentucky’s bankruptcy court is divided between the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky and the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Kentucky. The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky has locations in Ashland, Covington, Lexington and London. The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Kentucky is located in Louisville. Local forms needed to file for bankruptcy in the state of Kentucky can be found here. The cost to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Kentucky is $335. The cost to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in Kentucky is $310. Kentucky does allow for payments to be made in installments. The complete list of fees associated with filing for bankruptcy in Kentucky can be found here.
Most filers will require the assistance of an attorney when filing for bankruptcy. Completing paperwork honestly and fully is important because a failure to comply with the rules of the court could cause a bankruptcy petition to be dismissed. In addition, any attempts to hide assets or misrepresent financial information could result in serious penalties in the state of Kentucky.