When you’re getting ready to file bankruptcy, remember that the courts actually assume the best of people. They know that the majority of people who do file are sincere and forthright and are using bankruptcy as a last resort after exhausting all other options. They also know that most people would never intentionally commit fraud of any kind. Still, there are people out there who will make poor decisions in an attempt to keep more of their assets or lessen the effect of their financial situation. Because of these “few bad apples”, some strict consequences have been put in place. Bankruptcy fraud is a crime that is punishable by up to 5 years in prison, fines up to $250,000, or both. By simply being honest with the court, and me, you’ll have nothing to worry about.
Be Careful Not To:
- Make mistakes on your forms – I’ll be filling out all your paperwork for you using the information you provide. I’ll give you some worksheets to use to ensure that nothing is left out and together we’ll check for accuracy. Making small changes by increasing debt or decreasing income to try to qualify for Chapter 7 is fraud and is not something you’ll need to be concerned with.
- Hide assets – Of course filing bankruptcy can be scary, especially with worries about losing your property. The truth is, most people are able to keep most or all of their property. Some people mistakenly believe that if they give away their valuable property, it will not be part of their bankruptcy. This is actually considered “intent to defraud” and is a crime. Filing paperwork without including all your property is called “criminal fraud.” It is best to just disclose everything and to not have the worry of getting caught in a lie.
- Bribe a court-appointed trustee – This is clearly premeditated fraud and is easy to avoid. This crime is especially deceptive because it involves the trustee, who is trusted by the court, and also the person who is filing.
- File more than once in more than one state – One of the first questions that I’ll ask you is if you have filed bankruptcy before at any time. Even if it’s been many years, please let me know. It is no problem if you filed Chapter 7 more than 8 years ago or Chapter 13 more than 2 years ago. I know that debt can come up unexpectedly, even after you have filed bankruptcy, but trying to file under an alias or multiple times in multiple states is no way to deal with financial struggles.
Don’t let this information about fraud and crimes alarm you. As long as you’re honest and provide all the required information, you’ll have nothing to concern you. Together, we’ll prepare your paperwork and get your case taken care of so that you can get back to the hard work of taking care of yourself and your family.
Let Us Help
We are here to help as you strive toward financial freedom. We’re experienced and have up-to-date knowledge about all the aspects of bankruptcy law. Don’t feel like you have to navigate the system alone. We’re here to take your call! Contact us today to get started. Click here if you need a Eugene bankruptcy attorney , or check here for our other Oregon and Washington locations.