For most people, filing for bankruptcy is more than legal paperwork...it can require overcoming psychological
barriers as well. It may help to understand that the provisions of our bankruptcy laws were not intended to punish people.
The principle of our system is to provide citizens with the opportunity for a "Fresh Start".
Life happens. The people who govern our country and write our laws
understand that. Many industrious, hardworking people find themselves in financial straits where bankruptcy is the logical
option. Historically, these have included Thomas Jefferson, PT Barnum, Mark Twain, Henry Ford, Milton Hershey, Henry
Heinz and even Willie Nelson. The list seems endless. And while your case probably won't mirror Donald Trump's,
it deserves the same objective analysis of the situation and options. Credit counseling requires an intense focus on
the facts of your financial situation. Overcoming your emotions makes this process much less burdensome. If bankruptcy
turns out to be the logical solution, understand why it is the logical solution and move forward.
Credit counseling by an approved provider should be your first step. Even
if you've already attended counseling, bankruptcy courts require a specific program that must be completed prior to filing
your case. This is an established program that takes about an hour to complete either on-line or over the telephone.
It costs about $50 depending on the provider you use. You must gather all of your financial information and organize
it into property and debts prior to the course. Most providers supply forms that you can fill out to make the process
Links to the website of 3 approved counseling providers can
be found at the bottom of this page. The provider you choose must issue a certificate of counseling that
will be filed with the bankruptcy court.
second course is required after your bankruptcy case if filed. The second course focuses on Debt Management and
must be taken before your bankruptcy case can be completed. The Debt Management courses generally take about 2
hours and cost betweem $15 - $50.
The most important thing is to use approved counseling programs
that you feel comfortable with.
Pioneer; Offers a $35 rate for individual filers (can be completed on-line or over the phone)
DECAF; Offers both courses 24/7
Greenpath; Based in Farmington Hills, MI
YPSide also provides a link to the Consumer Bankruptcy Counseling site which offers a $5 online, prefiling certificate.
The $5 program is available on-line only.