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What is bankruptcy debtor counseling?

After going through the process of determining whether you can benefit from the bankruptcy process, you will need to finish a post-bankruptcy credit counseling course. The timing of when you should take this course depends on whether you have filed for Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 proceedings. Also, it is important for debtors to remember that the only counseling courses that will qualify are those provided by a debt management company that the U.S. Trustee Program of the Department of Justice has approved.

If you have filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your credit counseling requirement must be finished within 45 days of your creditors' meeting to submit your bankruptcy certificate to the court. If you have filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, your certificate of completing the counseling requirement must be provided to the court by your last repayment plan payment date or by the date of the filing of the motion to discharge.

One provider of credit counseling is American Consumer Credit Counseling, which offers a lot of different kinds of financial education courses, including both pre- and post-bankruptcy education. Fortunately, a lot of the credit counseling agencies offer phone or online counseling, which can be completed within the privacy of the debtor's home. During the session, debtors will be shown how to create a budget, manage money and wisely use credit. After completion of the session, the bankruptcy filers will receive a certificate of completion.

Although credit counseling is a requirement and might seem like a "chore," most debtors find the counseling session very beneficial. In fact, the requirement was created in order to help debtors avoid another bankruptcy in the future. With the assistance of a bankruptcy attorney to guide you through the bankruptcy process, with debtor education and with credit counseling, Ohio bankruptcy filers will be well on their way to a financially stable future.

Source:, "Bankruptcy Debtor Education," accessed April 22, 2016

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