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Some people want tons of information, some want very little.  The post at Information for Registered Clients has a ton of information for you to review and digest.  But if you are the sort who doesn’t feel the need to understand the entire Bankruptcy Code and Court System, and just want the down and dirty answer to the question “Enough with the encyclopedia…Just tell me what I have to do next?” then this list is for you.

First, I must get the obligatory statutory disclosure out of the way.  Federal law requires me to disclose the following: The Law Offices of David C. Winton is debt relief agency.  As such, we provide advice and assistance to people considering seeking relief under the United States Bankruptcy Code.  By accessing this site, you acknowledge that you understand this.

Now let’s get to work.

Please do these things in the order suggested because I need things from you in a sequence so that I can get other things prepared for the filing.

1.   Step One:  Download, sign, initial and fax (or email) back to the Notices and Disclosures to Assisted Persons.  It is very important that I have this back ASAP, and before we speak or meet again as these disclosures are required to be made by federal law.

2.   Step Two:  We have to get all your financial information into shape.  This is the where the rubber meets the road in a bankruptcy filing, and we cannot progress any further in the process until this is done.

Log in to Stop My Bills and complete the Online Bankruptcy Interview.  It will ask you for my Attorney ID, which is “wintoncases” without the quotes. You must be complete in this information, because there is no returning to it after the database determines that it complete, you can’t log in to it again.  That doesn’t mean that responses can’t be changed–everything can be changed before we file the petition–just that you can’t interface with this particular database on your own without my participation. It’s a computer thing. Just try to be complete and thorough so that we don’t have to do things more than once.

3.   Step Three:  Go to Start Fresh Today and complete the Credit Counseling class.  Refer to me in this site by by account name, which is “winton3222,” again without the quotes.  You are not required to use this resource, as any approved provider on this linked list will work.  BUT YOU CANNOT FILE THE CASE WITHOUT THIS CERTIFICATE.

Sign up for your bankruptcy courses here.

4.   Step Four:  Sign and fax (or email) back to the Consumer Request and Agreement for Consumer Liability Report.  This is a three-dollar term for credit report authorization.  The reason we get this is so that we don’t miss anything.

5.   Step Five:  Fill in the blanks, sign and fax (or email) back to the Client Acknowledgement.  If there are things we haven’t discussed, please note that on the document to be sure we discuss the, when we meet.

6.   Step Six:  Scan and email to or fax to (415) 358-4122 your last two years of filed federal income tax returns.

7.   Step Seven:  Scan and email to or fax to (415) 358-4122 your last 60 days of paystubs.  If you do not get paystubs, or you are self-employed, or have been unemployed, then skip this step.

8.   Step Eight:  Call me at (415) 485-2111 to arrange a meeting to go over your information and finalize our attorney-client relationship.  The fees that I have quoted you in our telephone conversations will be fully payable at that time.

Other Stuff:

Here is the Trustee Questionnaire that you will, in all likelihood, be required to complete and return after we file. You might want to review it while you’re gathering your information as it may trigger questions or reminders.

If you’re starved for yet more reading material, you may want to review my Bankruptcy Basics handout.

Also, here is a list of Dos and Don’ts in the Last 90 Days Prior to Filing Chapter 7.  Yet more useful stuff.

Last, here is a little missive called Guidelines for Legal-Services to be Provided by Debtors Attorney in Chapter-7 Cases.  The Bankruptcy Court in the Northern District of California requires attorneys to provide this to Chapter 7 clients.  It describes what sorts of things you may expect to be included as legal services to be provided in a fixed fee Chapter 7 case.  Even if I don’t end up representing you, you should still look at this to ensure that you are getting the services you’re entitled to from another attorney.

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