Bankruptcy Credit Counseling | Counseling Before Filing

How to File for Bankruptcy? When should you seek credit counseling?

Credit counseling is an essential requirement if you are considering declaring bankruptcy. It may not be something that comes to mind immediately when you think about bankruptcy, but it is an essential step in the process. We’ll be discussing the criteria and how to met them in this article.


You must go through “pre-bankruptcy counseling” before you can file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The government maintains a list that allows pre-bankruptcy counseling firms. 

This is available to filers in North Carolina and Alabama. Most ConsolidationNow-certified organizations provide this service, and when you fill out this form, ConsolidationNow may connect you with an authorized bankruptcy counselor.

After you complete the counseling, you will receive a certificate proving your compliance with the criteria. You have 180 days to file bankruptcy petitions. The certificate is valid for this period. You will need to retake the pre-filing counseling if you delay.

In addition to pre-bankruptcy counseling, there is another “counseling” requirement. After you file bankruptcy, pre-discharge debtor education will be required by law before your debts are discharged. 

Most credit counseling firms also offer debtor education. While this article focuses on credit counseling before filing, it is essential to know two counseling/education requirements.

What is involved in the Process?

Pre-filing credit counseling is required to ensure that customers file bankruptcy only if necessary. There might be other options. There are two options to file for bankruptcy: making substantial changes to your family budget or enrolling in debt management plans to repay credit card debt

Although bankruptcy is a good option in some cases, it also has its disadvantages. Bankruptcy has many disadvantages, including damage to your credit score and a bankruptcy notice on your credit report for ten years. This whitepaper compares bankruptcy with other debt-relief options.

What happens during therapy sessions? Your counselor will help you create a budget based on your earnings. Counselors will help you determine whether a repayment plan other than bankruptcy is feasible and if so, will suggest one. 

This session is not mandatory, but it can be very beneficial. You may decide to pursue an alternative to bankruptcy if you learn from the session. Counselors should explain all options to bankruptcy and the benefits and drawbacks of each. Counselors might also be able to refer you to local services that could provide additional assistance.

How to choose a Guidance Counselor

There are many options available to you, including the possibility of choosing your bankruptcy credit counselor firm (links at the top of the post). On the other hand, many people seek advice from a bankruptcy lawyer and then use the counseling services that the attorney recommends. 

This strategy is fine, but there are some things you should keep in mind.

It is essential to assess how committed you are to filing bankruptcy rather than looking for another option. You may be considering bankruptcy because of your debts. 

Many people have heard of bankruptcy and know that it can be used to eliminate certain debts. You may not be aware of other repayment options. You may be convinced that bankruptcy is the best choice for you.

Pre-filing counseling is not something you should do if you have already decided to file for bankruptcy. You’ll be more concerned about the quality of the pre-filing counseling session if you are trying to resolve a specific debt problem. 

You should take the time to find a counseling agency that will provide a tailored approach and help you decide whether or not you want to file for bankruptcy. ConsolidationNow is a good choice.

Important Points to Keep in Mind

Individuals filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy need to attend credit counseling before they file. Your bankruptcy attorney may recommend a recommended agency, or you can choose your agency. 

We recommend that you contact a ConsolidationNow member agency to discuss your options and consider alternatives to bankruptcy. Talk to your counselor about these options. Remember that therapy certificates are only valid for 180-days. You must submit your certificate within the time frame.



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