Explaining the Bankruptcy Paper Trail

Explaining the Bankruptcy Paper Trail

When a bankruptcy case is filed, a substantial amount of paperwork is generated by all parties and entities involved. These include the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, the U.S. Trustee, the debtor, creditors, and the debtor’s attorney. It is sometimes difficult to keep track of all this information and documentation. One of the Morrison Law Group’s seasoned attorneys can help any bankruptcy debtor easily navigate this paper trail.

The Debtor

Every debtor must collect all documentation containing any information regarding income for the six-month period preceding the date that the bankruptcy case is scheduled or expected to be filed. If a debtor is a regular wage-earner employed by another party and paid regularly, this includes regular pay stubs and similar records. Over the course of the case, all debtors must provide copies of their tax returns to the trustee assigned to the case.

Perhaps most importantly, Debtors must organize evidence of all their debts as part of their due diligence in ensuring that they have listed all debts on their bankruptcy schedules. Speaking of bankruptcy schedules, debtors must provide schedules and statements that comprehensively give the trustee and creditors an accurate snapshot of their financial situation.

The Court & Trustee

Once a bankruptcy petition is filed, debtors receive a notice of the commencement of their case. And so, here begins the paper trail that leads from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court and trustee to the debtor. While a case is pending, debtors may expect to receive correspondence from the court on a weekly basis.

Some of this correspondence may contain a pleading, which is a document filed in bankruptcy court. Other correspondence may be a notice of some action (such as the filing of a pleading) or a simple letter. Depending on the case, this contact may occur multiple times over the course of a week. Most trustees also send debtors questionnaires to collect other information pertinent to their case.


Most of the paper trail generated by creditors consists of proofs of claim and motions to lift (for relief from) the automatic stay. A proof of claim is evidence of a debtor’s obligation to a creditor. A motion that lifts the automatic stay removes the stay as to that creditor, thus allowing the creditor to restart collection efforts against the debtor.

Qualified, competent bankruptcy attorneys emphasize the necessity for truth and accuracy during the bankruptcy process. Debtors file each document under penalty of perjury. As a means to this end, debtors may be expected to comply with any request by their attorney for information and underlying documentation.

If you just need to discuss your Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy options, the Morrison Law Group is here to answer all your questions completely, patiently, and effectively. Call 801.456.9933 today to schedule a FREE consultation. We have locations in Ogden, Logan, Sandy, and St. George to serve the residents of the counties of Weber, Cache, Salt Lake, Utah, Morgan, Davis, Washington, and surrounding areas.

Explaining the Bankruptcy Paper Trail

Theron Morrison

Theron Morrison

Utah’s top bankruptcy and consumer protection attorney.