LASC assists clients with filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcies and dealing with bankruptcy-related issues. For general information on filing bankruptcy and what the different options are, see below:


What is bankruptcy?

What can bankruptcy do for me?

What can’t bankruptcy do for me?

What is chapter 7?

What is chapter 13?

What do both chapters have in common?

What does it cost?

What are the time limits?

Can I keep my tax refund?

Can I own anything after?

What will happen to my home and car?

What else should I know?

Will bankruptcy affect my credit?

File Preparation

Before meeting with an attorney or filing a bankruptcy petition on your own, you will need to gather information about your belongings and debts. In order to adequately fill in the bankruptcy petition, you will need to collect the following documents:

1. Driver’s license or state identification card; picture identification/proof of social security number

2. List of all creditors, including name, address, account number and balance due. Do not use bills themselves as substitute for list, but bring bills to verify information. Use the correspondence address. Include obligations to family, friends, taxing authorities and utilities. Include any collection notices you have received or any letters from attorneys collecting for any debts (see 11 U.S.C. § 342(c)(2)(A) for requirements).

  • A list of your creditors can be found on a credit report, and you can access a free credit report at
  • Collect copies of your bills as well, as not all creditors will be on the credit report (especially medical bills).
  • If you know you owe someone money but you do not have a bill and that person or company is not listed on the credit report, write down the creditor’s name and address and the approximate amount you owe and bring it in.

3. The amount due for each secured loan. Please bring the original contracts for each secured loan.

  • Examples of secured loans are mortgages, car loans or certain installment payment accounts where a bank, finance company or car dealership loaned you the money in exchange for a lien on the item purchased, such as a house, car, television set or appliance.
  • You will need the original paperwork you signed when you purchased the item, and the most recent statement or coupon book.

4. List of all cosigners (family or friends who have signed a contract taking on responsibility for the debt with you), including name and address and copy of the underlying document.

5. Paycheck stubs (or printout from employer) for last 6 months AND evidence of income from all sources (rental income, child support, etc.) over the 12 prior months. This includes a printout from the child support enforcement agency of child support received.

6. Certificates of title to all titled assets, including but not limited to vehicles, motors, mobile homes, trailers, motorcycles, etc.

  • If you do not have the title, you can obtain a replacement title or memorandum of title from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Here is a link to a directory of BMV branch offices: There is a fee for the title.

7. Copies of all leases, including apartment or house leases and personal property (automobile) leases, rent-to-own contracts, etc.

8. Copies of any and all deeds to real estate, including cemetery plots.

9. Copies of last three years tax returns – federal (including all schedules), state, and local; and W-2 and 1099 forms. If you have not filed your tax returns and are required to file, you must do so prior to filing of any bankruptcy.

10. Copies of any and all lawsuits, foreclosure suits, judgments or liens, including tax liens, and copies of any and all garnishments served on within the 12 months.

11. Copies of divorce decrees and/or domestic relations court orders relative to debt and/or support obligations. (include copies of any documents you have received from any support agency that would show payment history and/or balance due on any support arrearages.)

12. All bank account information, including your most recent bank statement and information on closed accounts.

13. Copies of insurance policies for all insured assets, including but not limited to homeowners or renters and vehicle policies. Include copies of any riders setting out specific items of personal property insured with values. The easiest way to get this information is to call your insurance agent and have them send you the current “declarations page” for your policy.

14. Copies of all life insurance and disability insurance policies. The easiest way to get this information is to call your insurance agent and have him or her send you the following information: policy owner, policy insured, policy beneficiary, face amount, current cash value and type of policy (usually term or whole life)

15. Copies of any prior bankruptcy cases, including the petition, schedules and statement of financial affairs.

16. Copies of last statement(s) received for any educational IRA and/or Tuition Trust Account.

17. Copies of last/most recent statement(s) for any retirement account(s).

18. Prior addresses. A list of your addresses over the last 3 years with move-in and move-out dates. If you have lived outside of Ohio in the last 10 years, please provide the address (or at least the state you lived in) with approximate move-in and move-out dates.

19. Copies of any/all estate planning documents, including but not limited to self-settled trusts.

20. Most recent utility bills;

21. Certification from an approved credit counseling organization. Here is a link to the list of approved Credit Counseling Agencies: Be sure to scroll down to the agencies for the SOUTHERN District of Ohio.

22. Settlement statements from personal injury or other claims within last 2 years. You can contact the attorney or insurance agent who handled your case to get a copy of the settlement statement showing the amount of money recovered, disbursements to other parties (attorney fees, attorney expenses, outstanding medical bills) and net amount paid to you.

Additional Information

Informational Handouts:

Bankruptcy for Individuals and Married Couples


Bankruptcy Court Information

The Southern District of Ohio Bankruptcy Court-

Columbus Divisional Office
170 North High St.
Columbus, OH 43215
(614) 469-6638

Cincinnati Divisional Office
221 E. Fourth St.
Atrium Two Suite 800
Cincinnati, OH 45202
(513) 684-2572

Dayton Divisional Office
120 West third St.
Dayton, OH 45402


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