How Quickly Can I File and Get Relief?

Creditors calling, night and day. Collectors threatening to garnish your paycheck or clean out our bank account. A tow-truck comes to your house at night when you did not need a tow. A process-server just served a summons and complaint telling you that you are now in a lawsuit. These are real situations, faced by many people suffering from too much debt. One of the most (if not the most) commonly asked questions is “How fast can I be protected and how quickly can all types of bankruptcy be filed?”

The short answer is, if you are ready to file (see below for what it takes to get ready) and if you see one of our Utah bankruptcy lawyers in the morning, we can probably file your case TODAY. This means you are protected TODAY. You can have peace of mind, TODAY. If your appointment is in the afternoon, we can generally file your case the NEXT DAY.

Now for the long answer. What does it take to get your case ready to file? Generally, Utah bankruptcy law requires:

  • a list of all of your debts and assets,
  • some background information about you,
  • all of your pay-stubs for the past 7 months, and
  • tax returns for the past 4 years.

The critical issue in preparing to file your bankruptcy case is providing accurate and complete information. Who do you owe, and what is their address and account number? What do you own (yes, you must disclose everything or you could be denied bankruptcy relief)? Our bankruptcy worksheet packet will help you transform the mountain of paperwork required by Utah bankruptcy law into a more manageable mole hill. It will help you get organized, which is a big part of the process.

If you don’t have copies of your pay stubs, contact your employer. If you don’t have copies of your tax returns, contact the IRS at 1-800-908-9946. You can request a transcript (at no charge), or a copy of your return (cost is $26.00 per year requested). The transcript is perfectly acceptable for bankruptcy purposes. For Utah tax information, call 801-297-6227 (cost is $6.00 per year, no transcript is available). If you have filed all of your taxes, but only have copies of the most recent year, don’t let that stop you from making an appointment with with one of our Utah bankruptcy lawyers.

Speaking of taxes, you should know that some tax preparers DO NOT file your state return. They only file your federal return and give you the state return for you to file. You may think that you have filed your state return when it has not actually been filed. Also, if you use tax filing software on your computer, make sure that you receive a confirmation that your return has actually been received by the taxing authority. Many of our clients think that they have filed their returns when they have not.
Once you have done all you are able to in gathering the required information, come in to meet with us. We can help you figure out how to get the remaining information so that you can file your case.

The most important thing to remember is that filing bankruptcy is not just a casual thing and that there is a lot of information that must be gathered BEFORE you can file. We know you need fast relief, but that relief cannot be obtained until we have the required information. If you have any questions, talk to one of our bankruptcy attorneys today. Every one of them is an expert in Utah bankruptcy law, and can guide you through the process.

Bankruptcy Types & Topics