Effective December 1, 2013, Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 1007(b)(7) has been amended to permit an approved debtor education provider to notify the court directly that the debtor has completed a post-petition instructional course concerning personal financial management.* This rule change applies to debtor education certificates ONLY, which is a course you take after you file bankruptcy, not to credit counseling certificates, which are for a course that you must take before you file bankruptcy.
The Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida will permit approved personal financial management course providers to file the Certificate of Debtor Education under Rule 1007(b)(7), electronically using the financial management course certificate efiling program (eFinCert) instead of requiring course providers to register as a limited filer in the court’s CM/ECF case management system.
Pursuant to Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 1007(c), the debtor must file a statement that he/she completed the personal financial management course within 60 days after the first date set for the meeting of creditors under § 341 of the Code in a chapter 7 case. In a chapter 11 or 13 case, the statement must be filed no later than the date when the last payment was made by the debtor as required by the plan or the filing of a motion for discharge under § 1141(d)(5)(B) or § 1328(b) of the Code. Failure by the provider to timely file the certificate in accordance with Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 1007(c), will result in the debtor’s case being closed without a discharge. See Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 4004(c)(1)(H).
Use of this electronic filing program constitutes certification that the filer is a United States Trustee-approved provider of a personal financial management instructional course.
Penalty for filing fraudulent certification: Fine of up to $500,000 or imprisonment for up to 5 years, or both [18 U.S.C. § 152 and 3571].
[* Note: Official Form 423, Certification About a Financial Management Course, has been amended to instruct the debtor to complete and file the form ONLY if the course provider has not already notified the court of the debtor's completion of the course.]