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Filing Without an Attorney

This web page is intended to be an informative and practical resource for understanding the basic procedures of this court. The statements on this page do not constitute legal advice and may not be cited as legal authority. This page does not take the place of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, any local rules, or the individual practices of the judges of this court. All parties using this page are responsible for complying with all applicable rules of procedure. If there is any conflict between the information on this page and the applicable rules, the rules govern.
 
Link to Filing for Bankruptcy Without an Attorney.
 
Form B 2000 contains a list of the documents, including schedules, that debtors must file.
 
Official Bankruptcy Forms  Official forms are approved by the Judicial Conference of the United States and are mandatory. They must be used to file a bankruptcy petition and take certain other actions in a bankruptcy case, such as filing a Proof of Claim or applying to pay a filing fee in installments.
If someone other than an attorney assists you with the preparation of the bankruptcy forms, you must disclose the name of the preparer on the petition.
 
Pro Se Packet Instructions
Pro Se Packet Forms
Video Overviews on Completing Forms for Consumer Debtors
 
 
Protecting Your Social Security Number
Individuals filing bankruptcy will place only the last four digits of their Social Security Number on the bankruptcy petition. Individuals are required to submit, with the bankruptcy petition, a separate Statement of Social Security Number(s), Official Form 21, in which their full Social Security Number is given. This Statement of Social Security Number(s) is not part of the public record and will not be available to the public.
Legal Advice & Resources
The Bankruptcy Clerk's Office is not permitted to assist you with preparing your petition, schedules, or other documents. Nor is the Clerk's Office permitted to provide you with legal advice.  Your local library has law books that may be of assistance to you. The Local Bankruptcy Rules for the Northern District of West Virginia and information on the various chapters in bankruptcy are available in the Clerk's Office or on our web site.
 
Appropriate Courtroom Attire & Conduct
All persons present in a courtroom where a trial, hearing, or other proceeding is in progress must dress and conduct themselves in a manner demonstrating respect for the court.
 
Retaining Your Records
You should keep copies of your petition, schedules, Order of Discharge and, if applicable, your Order of Dismissal. You may wish to obtain copies of other pertinent documents.
 
Credit Rating & Reports
The Bankruptcy Clerk's Office is not responsible for credit reports. Bankruptcy records are public records and the information contained in them can be retrieved by anyone. Any disputes you have with a credit agency must be resolved by you and that agency.