Getting Started

Step 1: Free Initial Telephone Consultation

When you call, I will conduct a screening interview to determine if you qualify to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and if you do, I will quote you an attorney fee. We will also schedule an office appointment, usually within the next seven days.

Step 2: Gather and Organize Required Information

Please bring the following papers and information with you for the appointment:

  • Your most recent federal tax return, including all pages and W-2s
  • Proof of current income with your most current year-to-date paystub or monthly bank statement showing receipt of Social Security or unemployment comp.
  • The name and address of each creditor or collection agency, including ones that you plan to continue to pay such as mortgage companies or auto finance companies, and the amount owed. If you need to look at your credit report to get this information, you can get a free credit report at or
  • Copies of all lawsuits

In addition, please bring a list of your monthly expenses, broken down by category, including:

  • Rent or mortgage payment
  • Electric and gas
  • Water
  • Phone
  • Food
  • Clothing
  • Medical expenses
  • Gasoline and car maintenance
  • Car payments
  • Car insurance

Depending on your specific circumstances, I may also ask you to bring additional information such as a Realtor's letter on the value of your home.

Step 3: Complete Credit Counseling Course

Before I can file your Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition, you will need to complete a pre-bankruptcy credit counseling session. To do this, contact and give them my email address, which is  [email protected]. They will charge you $15. If you need to do a rush filing or to do the counseling on the phone, contact Access Counseling online or by calling (800) 205-9297. Give Access the attorney code: SteveBeck, and Access will e-mail me the completion certificate. Access will charge you $25 for this, the same price whether online or by phone.

Step 4: Our Meeting

During our office appointment, which usually lasts about 1½ to 2 hours, I will review the information and papers you bring in, prepare the bankruptcy petition and have you sign the papers, so that your case may be ready to file at the end of only one appointment.

At least half the payment (my legal fee plus court fees) is due at this meeting. I will file your petition within 30 days of its being ready to file. After the petition is filed, the law requires that all creditor collection activity must stop.

Rush handling of your case is also available.

Here is what you can expect to happen after our first meeting: See The Bankruptcy Process