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My son is in prison and needs to file BK and his creditors are hounding me. Can he file from prison or does he need to wait?

Maple Valley, WA |

He will be in prison for two years if everything goes well. He has over $12,000 in revolving debt. I know if he is able to file, he needs to attend a hearing and he needs to do a couple of credit counseling courses--how is it possible for him to attend or complete the courses?

Attorney Answers 3


It is most likely possible that he could complete the courses from prison (they are done by phone or internet), however, he would still have a problem because he needs to go to the first meeting of creditors. This is dependent on whether the trustee is willing to work with you, and consulting with a local bankruptcy attorney will get you a better answer about whether this is possible. I'd personally say he should wait because he isn't in any danger right now of anything being garnished, however, that does not mean it is not possible to file sooner while he is in prison)

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It depends on the practices in your district. In some places, you (or rather, his bankruptcy lawyer) can make all the arrangements, get him to sign the necessary documents, work with the prison officials to allow him to do credit counseling, etc.

I have been able to do that successfully in my district, but the judges in some other districts apparently do not allow it. You will have to ask lawyers in your area what the local practice is (or you could try calling the Bankruptcy Court Clerk's office and asking them; another possibility would be to call the U.S. Trustee's office to see if that office has a problem with what you propose.)

Use the link to the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorney to get a list of qualified bankruptcy lawyers in your area.

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I agree with Mr. Davis' answer. In my experience, the Trustee can arrange a telephonic appearance for the debtor from jail.

Mr. Larkin is licensed to practice law in CA and is located in San Diego. His response here does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney/ client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter in question. Many times the questioner may leave out details which would make the reply unsuitable. Mr. Larkin strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their own state to acquire more information about the specifics of their case.

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