What to Expect from the Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Process

We understand the stress you’ve been under and how anxious you must feel. So when you decide to book your no-obligation initial consultation, we aim to get you into our offices (or on the phone) as soon as possible--in as little as two to seven days. Filing for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a much more involved process than a Chapter 7 filing. Hiring an experienced Tucson bankruptcy attorney is essential for a successful outcome.

  • Complete a questionnaire: You’ll be asked to fill out a questionnaire before, or when you arrive to your initial consultation with Jeffrey Judge. It should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete.
  • Consult with Jeffrey Judge: Judge Law Firm provides the most comprehensive initial consultation in Tucson. For a fee of $100, you not only receive a credit report but a full hour with Jeffrey Judge. During this time, he will listen to your story, analyze your financial situation and explain your options under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. Should you wish to retain our bankruptcy services, we’ll guide you through our step-by-step bankruptcy process.
  • Ensure you do the following:
    1. Stop using credit and stop paying any debts immediately.
    2. Organize your finances. This involves gathering information including, but not limited to, bank and credit card statements, creditor correspondence, etc.
    3. Stop banking at an institution where you have debt.
  • Complete a mandatory 90-minute course from an approved credit-counseling agency within 180 days before your bankruptcy case is filed. The course can be completed in-person, by telephone, or over the Internet. Please note: Judge Law Firm will advise you on this process and provide a list of recommended agencies.
  • Submit paperwork: During this meeting with Jeffrey Judge, you’ll bring the documents we’ve requested. We’ll then schedule the official signing for your bankruptcy.
  • File for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Arizona: During this short meeting, we’ll file your bankruptcy petition, proposed repayment plan and required documents including proof that you’ve filed tax returns in the last four years. We’ll print a copy for your records.
  • The court will appoint a bankruptcy trustee to manage your case. The trustee reviews your plan, collects payments and distributes them to creditors. The trustee is also charged with monitoring your monthly income and expense reports, etc.
  • The automatic stay takes effect when you file your papers. Once the trustee notifies your creditors of the stay, they are prevented from continuing collection actions. Some creditors may be exempt from the stay and will ask the court to remove it.
  • You make your first payment one month after you file your papers.
  • Attend the meeting of creditors. The trustee moderates this meeting, asking a series of questions regarding your filing and allows any creditors who attend to ask questions. You’ll want an experienced Chapter 13 bankruptcy attorney like Jeffrey Judge to represent you at this meeting.
  • Attend the confirmation hearing. Jeffrey Judge will address any creditor or trustee objections to your repayment plan. If all goes well, the court will confirm your plan.
  • File or object to proofs of claim. Creditors file proof of claim forms in order to get paid. Objections can be made should you dispute a claim.
  • Make your payments and meet requirements in accordance with your plan.
  • Complete a 2nd two-hour mandatory course on personal finances. Please note: Judge Law Firm will advise you on this process and provide a list of recommended agencies.
  • When the repayment period ends, the court grants a discharge and your case is closed The discharge wipes out any remaining balance of qualifying debt. The court might hold a discharge hearing or choose to mail you the notice without holding a hearing.

Judge Law Firm will provide you with recommendations on how to move forward financially and encourage you to reach out with any questions or concerns.

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Are your debts a temporary setback or a roadblock to your family’s future? To learn more about how we can help, call 520-388-5665 right now, or fill out the form below.