Social media websites have become one of the primary ways people communicate with each other. In fact, adults are using Facebook, Instagram and other similar websites just as much as teenagers. Whether it is posting pictures or writing details about your life, it is important to remember that what you put out for the world to see can impact your bankruptcy case. Remember, your creditors and the trustee assigned to your case also have social media website accounts and it is possible for them to see your pictures and posts.
Consider the following ways your pictures and posts can create issues in your bankruptcy case:
- When you file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 case, you are required to make a full financial disclosure. This means that you must list all of your property and assets in your filing. It also means that if you post a picture of a motorcycle or ski boat that was not listed in your bankruptcy case, the trustee will have questions.
- A debtor must also make full disclosure of all of his or her sources of income. Thus, if you post information or an advertisement for a side-job mowing lawns, but you failed to disclose this income in your bankruptcy pleadings, it could raise questions in your case.
- When you are in bankruptcy, it is necessary to live on a strict budget. You are not permitted to make unnecessary or frivolous purchases while not paying all of your creditors in full. In other words, posts about shopping sprees or vacations while your bankruptcy is pending is likely to cause you trouble.
It is important to understand that bankruptcy trustees are not spending hours online trying to catch debtors in lies. However, if you have creditors that are angry that you are discharging the debt you owe to them, they may actively look for a way to cause issues in your case. Thus, the best advice is that you make honest and full financial disclosures in your bankruptcy filing. Additionally, before you post anything on a social media account, think about who could potentially see it. You should not post anything that you would not want to be submitted as evidence in your bankruptcy case.
If you are considering filing a bankruptcy and you need help determining which type of filing would be best for you, contact Fitzgerald & Campbell to schedule an appointment. We do not offer just one debt relief option, we don’t push you in one direction. If bankruptcy right for you, we will tell you. If it’s not, we will tell you that. If bankruptcy is your get out of debt plan, it needs to be done right. It needs to be in the hands of experienced lawyers who have been there before. Contact us today!