Once you begin learning the terms and issues surrounding bankruptcy, you’ll find that as you focus on your particular filing, it’s not as complicated as it may all have seemed at first, and especially if you have consulted with a law firm well versed in bankruptcy such as Fitzgerald & Campbell, APLC. There are, however, some things to consider months—and even a year—ahead of time. Surprisingly, fraud on the side of the debtor can come up in quite often in terms of charges and payments made, so it is very important to make sure you’ve considered when your last charges were incurred as well as payments, presenting your finances in the best order possible to the bankruptcy court.
It may seem like a good idea to start shifting money around and maybe even to transfer property out of your name and into that of your kids or a relative or even a friend as you begin the journey into bankruptcy. Be aware that this is absolutely not a good idea, and doing something like that could seriously botch up your bankruptcy, as well as bringing up the issue of fraudulent conveyance. One, this can all be fairly easily tracked and may definitely derail your plans for achieving a bankruptcy discharge. Two, it’s illegal! The best answer to any thoughts of moving money and property around ‘creatively’ is no, resoundingly, no.
While debtors have been known to come up with many different and complex scenarios, a fraudulent conveyance is quite simply the transferring of an asset for much less than its actual value to another party, in an effort to have that converted into cash for paying creditors. And while that could seem clever in the beginning, when things go too far, as we’ve covered in other blogs, things can get messy for the recipient. The person or entity who may have received the transfer of assets can be sued by the trustee. If you have transferred property or assets prior to filing for bankruptcy, and are wondering about how they will be viewed by the trustee, this is a good time to seek counsel.
As you navigate some of the finer areas of bankruptcy and the specifics of your own finances, think about consulting with an attorney who has been dedicated to helping clients in the field of bankruptcy for decades. At Fitzgerald & Campbell, APLC we are dedicated to helping you explore all your options as you think about filing for bankruptcy. We are here to help you!