Chapter 7 Bankruptcy


Chapter 7 bankruptcies are the most basic and most common form of bankruptcy cases.

In Chapter 7, the debtor may protect their assets by listing them as exempt property to allow them to be kept when proceedings conclude and the debts are discharged. There is a limit to the amount of assets that can be exempt based on preexisting values.

Any assets not exempt are sold by a court appointed trustee to then distribute the net proceeds to creditors. In exchange, the debtor's debts become discharged, removing personal liability and making the debts unenforceable.

The Bankruptcy Process


After retaining Leslie Smith for her services, you will be given a Bankruptcy Packet to fill out, and a brochure detailing two courses you will need to complete.

The packet is for you to provide the most information required to file your bankruptcy, this includes information on all your creditors, your assets, and your income and monthly expenses. Please fill out the packet in full so we may better prepare and file your bankruptcy more efficiently. We will need to prove your income to the court and require the  last six-months of paystubs to input into the bankruptcy case software.

The brochure will explain the process to completing the two courses: 

  1. The Pre-Filing Credit Counseling Course, which must be completed and before your bankruptcy can be filed.
  2. The Post-Filing Debtor Education Course, which must be completed after the case is filed, preferably before the Meeting of Creditors.   

The meeting of creditors is a scheduled hearing at a date and time determined when your bankruptcy is filed, we will inform you of when that is. 

When attending your Meeting of Creditors, it is good to arrive at least 15 minutes early to ensure you find parking and can get through any security. It is common practice to require that you present your social security card, valid ID such as your driver's license, and the last two months of paystubs that includes the date your bankruptcy was filed. 

Free Initial Consultation

Attorney Leslie Smith conducts Bankruptcy and debt consolidation in Richland, WA and the surrounding Tri-Cities area. She provides an free initial consultation for the first 1/2 hour.