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Bankruptcy FAQ

Documents you will need to file for bankruptcy

On Behalf of | May 1, 2018 | Bankruptcy, Personal Bankruptcy

There are a number of reasons why people need to file for bankruptcy. People may need to file because they lost their jobs or a family member experienced a medical emergency. According to the court website, approximately 115 people in central Louisiana file for Chapter 7 pr Chapter 13 bankruptcy every month. 

Before the process of filing for bankruptcy can truly begin, you need to track down the right paperwork. You should have the following documents with you when you schedule your first appointment with a bankruptcy attorney. 

Proof of income

In the event you have a job, you need to show how much money you earn. This can include your most recent W-2 in addition to several of your last pay stubs. For individuals who acquire income through government programs, such as Social Security, they will need to provide proof of those income sources, too. 

Tax returns

Ideally, you will have at least two years’ worth of tax returns to provide. Some people may not have needed to file tax returns. For example, a person whose only source of income is through disability benefits would not have any tax returns to provide. However, that individual will still need to write a letter explaining the situation. 


You will need documentation stating the value of any property you own, including your home and car. You need these documents even if you took out loans on the items you still pay for. In many instances, you can print out a document stating the value of your vehicle on or  Your attorney may have access to information about valuations of property.

Additional documents

When it comes to bankruptcy, it is better to be overly prepared than not prepared enough. Bring anything that even remotely relates to your finances. For instance, if you pay alimony every month, then provide proof of this cost. Anyone who has divorced recently should bring a copy of the property distribution agreement. Also, bring a list of your debts with an estimate of the amount owed.