Bankruptcy (Court)

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BANKRUPTCY (COURT) go back


There are 94 federal judicial districts that handle bankruptcy matters, and in almost all districts, bankruptcy cases are filed in the bankruptcy court. Bankruptcy cases cannot be filed in state court. Bankruptcy laws help people who can no longer pay their creditors, get a fresh start by liquidating their assets to pay their debts, or by creating a repayment plan.

Bankruptcy laws also protect troubled businesses and provide for orderly distributions to businesses and provide for orderly distributions to business creditors through reorganization or liquidation. These procedures are covered under Title 11 of the United States Code (the Bankruptcy Code). The majority of cases are filed under the three main chapters of the Bankruptcy Code, which are Chapter 7 - Liquidation Under the Bankruptcy Code, Chapter 11 - Reorganization Under the Bankruptcy Code, and Chapter 13 - Individual Debt Adjustment.

Chapter 7 often called the liquidation chapter, is used by individuals, partnerships, or corporations who are unable to repair their financial situation. In chapter 7 asset cases, the debtor’s estate is liquidated under the rules of the bankruptcy code. Liquidation is the process through which the debtor’s non-exempt property is sold for cash by a trustee and the proceeds are distributed to the creditors.

Chapter 11 often called the reorganization chapter, chapter 11 allows corporations, partnerships, and some individuals to reorganize, without having to liquidate all assets. In filing a chapter 11, the debtor presents a plan to creditors which, if accepted by the creditors and approved by the court, will allow the debtor to reorganize personal, financial or business affairs and again become a financially productive individual or business.


Chapter 12 is designed for “family farmers” or “family fishermen” with “regular annual income”. It enables financially distressed family farmers and fishermen to propose and carry out a plan to repay all or part of their debts. Under chapter 12, debtors propose a repayment plan to make installments to creditors over three to five years. Generally, the plan must provide for payments over three years unless the court approves a longer period “for cause”.


Chapter 13 An individual with a regular income who is overcome by debts but believes such debt can be repaid within a reasonable period of time, may file under chapter 13 of the bankruptcy code. Chapter 13 permits the debtor to file a plan in which the debtor agrees to pay a certain percentage of future income to the bankruptcy court trustee for payment to creditors. If the court approves the plan, the debtor will be under the court’s protection while repaying such debts.

Some individuals prefer to file for bankruptcy without legal assistance; however, the process is very complicated, and individuals may need the advice of an attorney. There are many "how to" books and Internet Web sites available to consumers.

OFFICE OF THE US TRUSTEE

The Office of the US Trustee Program is a component of the Justice Department that works to ensure the integrity of the bankruptcy system across the nation. The duties of United States Trustees include: • Appointing and supervising the private trustees who collect and disburse funds to creditors in bankruptcy cases under Chapters 7, 12, and 13; • Assuring compliance with the Bankruptcy Code with respect to information disseminated in cases through reports, schedules, disclosure statements, reorganization plans, and other filings. • Reviewing fee applications of professionals, like attorneys and accountants, who serve in Chapter 11 business reorganization cases; and • Monitoring bankruptcy cases for fraud and abuse and referring criminal matters to U.S. Attorneys for prosecution in accordance with the USTP Mission Statement.

The Executive Office for U.S. Trustees, located in Washington, D.C., oversees the United States Trustee Program's substantive operations and handles the program's administrative functions.


To report suspected bankruptcy fraud, please prepare a written summary that contains the following information:


REQUESTED INFORMATION:

  • Name and address of the person or business you are reporting
  • The name of the bankruptcy case, case number and the location of where the case was filed
  • Any identifying information you may have regarding the individual or the business
  • A brief description of the alleged fraud, including how you became aware of the fraud and when the fraud took place. Please include all
  • Identify the type of asset that was concealed and its estimated dollar value, or the amount of any unreported income, undervalued asset, or other omitted asset or claim
  • Your name, address, telephone number and email address. You are not required to identify yourself, though it is often helpful to do so if questions arise


The likelihood of further investigation and possible criminal prosecution is increased for those matters where supporting documentation and specific factual information are provided. Any information by the United States Trustee Program is authorized by 28 U. S. C. section 586.

You can send this information via email to:

USTP.Bankruptcy.Fraud@usdoj.gov


or by mail to:

Office for U. S. Trustees

ATTN: Office of Criminal Enforcement

George C. Young Federal Building and Courthouse

400 W. Washington Street, Suite 1100

Orlando, FL 32801


Matters may also be referred directly to the local office of the United States Trustee.


US TRUSTEE PROGRAM – CALIFORNIA (REGION 15)

TIFFANY CARROLL, ACTING UNITED STATES TRUSTEE

880 FRONT STREET THIRD FLOOR, SUITE 3230

SAN DIEGO, CA 92101

619-557-5013

619-557-5339 Fax


PETER ANDERSON, UNITED STATES TRUSTEE (REGION 16)

915 WILSHIRE BLVD., SUITE 1850

LOS ANGELES, CA 90017

213-894-6811

213-894-2603 Fax


JILL STURTEVENT, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 16)

915 WILSHIRE BLVD., SUITE 1850

LOS ANGELES, CA 90017

213-894-6811

213-894-2603 Fax


FRANK CADIGAN, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 16)

411 W. FOURTH STREET, SUITE 7160

SANTA ANA, CA 92701-8000

714-338-3400

714-338-3421 Fax


ABRAM FEUERSTEIN, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 16)

3801 UNIVERSITY AVENUE, SUITE 720

RIVERSIDE, CALIFORNIA 92501

Phone: 951-276-6990 Fax: 951-276-6973


PETER ANDERSON, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 16)

915 WILSHIRE BLVD., SUITE 1850

LOS ANGELES, CA 90017

Phone: 213-894-6811 Fax: 213-894-2603


TRACY HOPE DAVIS, UNITED STATES TRUSTEE (REGION 17)

450 GOLDEN GATE AVENUE, 5TH FLOOR, SUITE #05-0153

SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94102

Phone: 415-705-3300 Fax: 415-705-3367


TIMOTHY S. LAFFREDI, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 17)

450 GOLDEN GATE AVENUE, 5TH FLOOR, SUITE #05-0153

SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94102

Phone: 415-705-3333 Fax: 415-705-3379


GREGORY S. POWELL, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 17)

UNITED STATES COURTHOUSE

2500 TULARE STREET, SUITE 1401

FRESNO, CA 93721

Phone: 559-487-5002 Fax: 559-487-5030


GREGORY S. POWELL, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 17)

501 "I" STREET, SUITE 7-500

SACRAMENTO, CA 95814-2322

Phone: 916-930-2100 Fax: 916-930-2099


TIMOTHY S. LAFFREDI, ASSISTANT U.S. TRUSTEE (REGION 17)

280 SOUTH FIRST STREET, ROOM 268

SAN JOSE, CA 95113

Phone: 408-535-5525 Fax: 408-535-5532


United States Federal Bankruptcy Courthouses by county:

Eastern District www.caeb.uscourts.gov

Northern District www.canb.uscourts.gov

Southern District www.casb.uscourts.gov


See Also: United States Code, Title 11, Sections 101 through 1331 Other Referrals: www.uscourts.gov www.supremecourtus.gov



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