Filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy requires a Debtor to obtain a special certificate prior to filing and another prior to debt discharge

You can click the button below to see the complete list of approved credit counseling agencies. Of course, you can choose whomever you want to provide the certificate, but make sure to pick an agency which is listed under the Western District of Washington.

VIEW ALL APPROVED CREDIT COUNSELING AGENCIES

If you plan to file for consumer bankruptcy protection, you must obtain a pre-filing credit counseling certificate from a government-approved agency. This certificate must be filed with the court at the time your case is filed. View a list of approved agencies here.

Typically, a counseling session lasts 60-90 minutes. It can be completed online, by phone or in person. Online is by far the most popular and least expensive option. The fee is generally around $10-$30. If you can’t afford to pay the fee, feel free to ask the agency if you qualify for a fee waiver. During the session, the agency will go over your budget and general finances. It’s not a test. It is just information gathering and review.

When you complete the counseling, you will receive a certificate (typically by email). Keep this document safe, and provide a copy to our office. Often, the agency will provide a copy to our office if you ask them to do so. However, either way, it is critical that you confirm we actually receive it.

Pre-filing certificates are good for cases filed within six months of the certificate issuance date. 

NOTE: YOUR CONSUMER CASE CANNOT BE FILED WITHOUT THE CERTIFICATE.

To obtain a bankruptcy discharge of debt, Debtors must obtain a separate post-filing credit counseling certificate from a government-approved agency. The certificate must be filed with the court after the case is filed and before the Discharge Order is scheduled to be entered by the court. 

Typically, a counseling session lasts two hours. It can be completed online, by phone or in person. Online is by far the most popular and least expensive option. The fee is generally around $10-$30. If you qualified to have the pre-filing certificate waived, they may waive the fee for the post-filing certificate. During this “debtor education” session, the agency with share with the Debtor financial management tools, such as tips for creating a budget and rebuilding credit after bankruptcy.

When you complete the counseling, you will receive a certificate (typically by email). Keep this document safe, and provide a copy to our office. Often, the agency will provide a copy to our office if you ask them to do so. However, either way, it is critical that you confirm we actually receive it. If the certificate is not filed on time, the court will close your case without a discharge. You can still obtain a discharge. However, there will be a delay and additional costs. 

NOTE: YOU WILL NOT RECEIVE A DISCHARGE OF DEBT UNLESS THE POST-FILING CERTIFICATE IS FILED WITH THE COURT.

The United States Trustee issues a list of agencies approved to issue certificates. Approved agencies are broken down by State. For the list of Washington approved credit counseling agencies, you can click this link.

If you live in SW Washington or the “western” half of the Washington State, you want to select an agency approved for the “Western District of Washington” (on the bottom half of the list). 

If you want to speed up the process, here are few agencies our clients have recently used. Of course, you are free to choose whoever you desire:

  • Summit Financial Education Inc.
    Telephone & Online
    Toll Free: 1-800-780-5965
    www.summitfe.org

You and/or the agency can email your certificate to us at Frontdesk@RRLawGroup.com.  You can also deliver a printed copy to our office. 

It is critical that you confirm with our office that we have received a certificate. Sometimes the agency does not send the certificate when you thought they had. Sometimes certificates are sent to the wrong email address. Sometimes certificates are caught up as spam. That is why we require you to confirm with us that we have received a certificate. No one wants any surprises or delays. Failure to confirm with our office that we have acknowledged receipt of a certificate could delay your filing and/or debt discharge and lead to additional fees and/or a loss of assets.

Facing Debt or Financial Problems?

You can still regain control of your finances by reaching out to an experienced bankruptcy attorney in Washington. Let us help you resolve your financial issues skillfully, protect your assets with compassion, and utilize every means possible to achieve your desired results. Contact us for a free consultation today.

BREAK FREE FROM DEBT TODAY!