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Although the economy is improving and foreclosures in many parts of the country are in decline due to rising home values, financially marginalized people still file bankruptcy in disproportionate numbers. Many debtors are unrepresented and bankruptcy clinics are still in great demand. There is a critical need for pro bono attorneys to assist low-income clients at all levels. The practice of bankruptcy law is ever changing (all of the forms changed effective April 1, 2016) and can be quite complicated with even the simplest form of bankruptcy, Chapter 7. This basic program was developed for brand new practitioners and those who are either not familiar with the practice or have not practiced bankruptcy law since the passage of BAPCPA. The program hopes to develop practitioners who will volunteer their time and skills to those who cannot afford representation. The program will focus on Chapter 7 bankruptcy, from the day a new client walks into your office, to the day you receive notice that they have successfully received a discharge and their case is closed.
What You Will Learn
- An overview of Chapter 7 bankruptcy
- Duties and due diligence of the attorney
- How the discharge works and the effectiveness of the automatic stay
- How to protect the debtor’s property through exemptions
- An overview of the means test for the low-income client
- Issues in bankruptcy to be aware of and understand
This program is designed for practitioners, paralegals and legal assistants who are new to bankruptcy or new to BAPCPA. It is a basic “How to File a Chapter 7” program.