If you are planning to file for bankruptcy then you will indeed be making a trip to court. The U.S. Bankruptcy court is a federal court and deals with all aspects of bankruptcy law. Each of the 94 judicial districts handles bankruptcy matters.
Each bankruptcy court houses a bankruptcy judge who is appointed to 14 years by the U.S. court of appeals. Though rare on occasion, regular district courts can hear and try bankruptcy cases on the courts discression.
Your first visit to court will most likely be brief. You will not be seeing a judge on your first visit, but instead a trustee of the court who will ask you questions regarding you financial status and history.
Questions will fall along the lines of where you live, what property you own, list of assets and liabilities and if you have any pending lawsuits against another person.
You will also be asked if you expect to inherit cash from a relative or other source. No creditors will be in attendance during your chapter 7 hearing and your lawyer will be with you the whole time.
For Chapter 13 hearings it will be the same basically. You will endure the same questioning in addition to questions regarding your repayment plans.
After sixty to ninety days you will be returning to court to finish the discharge order. It is very important though that you show up and are on time.
The court may see you in contempt and discharge your bankruptcy case unless your attorney successfully files a continuance. Then you will most likely have to pay your attorney an extra filing fee on top of everything else.
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