Every bankruptcy case requires you to list all of your debts. If you fail to do so, a creditor could come back to you after the bankruptcy case and demand payment because the discharge didn’t cover them. In some cases, failing to disclose a debt can also lead the courts to conclude you’re attempting to prioritize that creditor fraudulently.
Yet, if you’ve been in financial chaos for some time, you might not know what you owe. Many borrowers stop checking their mail, and they stop answering their phones.
Here is how to find everything you owe to prepare for your bankruptcy case.
List Your Monthly Bills
Most borrowers have monthly debt accounts they’re still paying on, such as car or house payments.
Start there. List these debts.
Open All Your Mail
It’s time to pick up that pile of unopened mail and sort through it. Grab a big binder and place all copies of the bills you find together. Place the most recent one on top.
You may also have emails or texts from creditors. Check those as well.
Make a list so you can see at a glance what’s there. This will be an important reference document as you take your next steps.
Pull a Free Credit Report
Use Annual Credit Report to pull a free credit report. You should be able to see any debts reported to collection agencies, including very old ones that are no longer sending you any mail.
Compare the credit report debts against your existing list, and record anything you find.
Call Medical Providers
Many medical bills don’t appear on credit reports, and some will stop contacting you quickly. If there’s a possibility you’ve thrown away some medical bills, contact the providers you’ve used recently and ask if you have an open balance.
Don’t share your contact information with them if you can avoid it, but do try to get balances.
Get it All Organized and Schedule a Consultation
The process of collecting your debt information can be overwhelming. It’s not fun to see how much you might owe.
Don’t let the numbers paralyze you. You’ve done the hard part. Now, call us for a free consultation.
We’ll review your full financial picture together and develop a plan of action.