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Filing a Chapter 13 Case

Because there are many complicated issues that may come up in a bankruptcy case, individuals may wish to hire an attorney who is allowed to practice in this bankruptcy court. If you do choose to represent yourself as a pro se filer and go through the bankruptcy case without a lawyer, you must follow all federal and local court laws and requirements and use the federal and local required forms that are available from the clerk’s office or the court’s web site for filing documents. DO NOT use any other forms; they may be from a different court or may be old forms that cannot be used in this court since they have been replaced by updated versions.

The judges, judges’ staff, clerk, or clerk’s staff are not permitted to provide legal advice or speak with you in an ex parte communication (which means without the other side present).

Prior to Filing a Bankruptcy Petition

Individual debtors MUST complete a credit counseling course from an approved credit counseling agency, prior to filing bankruptcy. This requirement, along with any exceptions that may apply, are explained in this clerk’s notice: “STOP & READ BEFORE FILING” (Spanish) (Creole). A list of approved Credit Counseling Agencies can be located on the U.S. Trustee’s website.

The filing fee for a Chapter 13 petition is $310.   Filing fee for a petition that is electronically transmitted to the Clerk, must be remitted to the Clerk within 14 days by mailing a certified check or money order (no cash will be accepted by mail), in the exact amount, payable to Clerk, U.S. Court.  Case number must be included on the certified check or money order. Filer should include a self-addressed stamped envelope if a receipt is requested.  Alternatively, the debtor may:

Pay Filing Fee in Installments. Only individual debtors (including joint petitions filed) may apply to pay the filing fee in installments. You must use the Local Form “Application for Individuals to Pay the Filing Fee in Installments”. Both debtors, if joint petition, must sign the application. A minimum installment payment of one half the filing fee at the time of filing of the petition is required.  The clerk will not accept a voluntary petition presented for filing by a debtor seeking to pay filing fee in installments if filing fees remain due from any previous case filed by that debtor unless the application is accompanied by payment of all previously due fees. [See Local Rules 1002-1(B)(1)(b) and 1006-1(A)].

Documents Due at Time of Filing of Bankruptcy Petition

Documents Due Within 14 Days

Other Documents that May be Required at the Time of Filing:

Discharge Eligibility: