How Long Does it Take to File a Bankruptcy? Can I Speed Up the Process?
Filing for bankruptcy is different in each circumstance and the length of time it takes to file can be affected by many factors.
When you contact a Trustee in bankruptcy to schedule a consultation appointment, most Trustees can arrange to meet with you within a short time frame. It is sometimes easier to get an appointment with a Trustee that has an office directly in the town where you live, rather than choosing a firm that only maintains a satellite location as this may mean there is a full time staff member devoted to meeting the needs of your community. Either way, once you make the call, getting an appointment is a simple process.
The initial consultation usually takes no more than one hour. At this meeting your advisor will talk with you about your financial situation and will explain the options available. It is now your turn to make the decision about whether filing for bankruptcy is the best option for you. For some people, they have already made their decision and when they attend their consultation appointment they have everything available to prepare the bankruptcy paperwork. If it fits within the Trustee’s schedule, you may be able to file for bankruptcy that same day.
Most people take some time to think it over, and also need time to gather the required paperwork in order to prepare the bankruptcy documents. At this time, the length of time it takes to file for bankruptcy depends a lot on the individual. If you have a need to file very quickly, it helps to bring as much information as possible about the following:
- Any statements from your creditors that have the account number and balance owing
- Any statements of account, appraisals and proof of ownership for any assets you may have
- Government issued identification
- The income tax return and assessment for the last tax return filed
- A pay stub, or proof of current income for all members of your household
- Any other information that you think may be relevant to your financial situation.
Once you are ready to proceed and have provided all the necessary documents to your Trustee, you then attend their office to sign the bankruptcy documents. After signing the documents, they are electronically filed with the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy. This process takes seconds, and when completed you are then officially in bankruptcy.
As you can see, the length of time it takes to file for bankruptcy depends a lot on you. Your Trustee will help you through the process and should always be available to answer any questions that help you make your final decision.