All creditors you have listed in your Chapter 13 Petition and Schedules are provided with notice that you have filed bankruptcy and that there is in effect an “automatic stay,” preventing them from contacting you or your employer in any way during the time your Chapter 13 plan is pending. If you get notices from a creditor in the mail, send them to your attorney. You should not be greatly concerned if you receive delinquent notices, but if your receive a more personal or direct contact from a creditor, such as a telephone call, a personal letter, a summons or a personal visit, you should immediately inform the creditor that you are under the protection of Chapter 13. Give the creditor your case number, your Trustee’s name and address, and your attorney’s name, address and telephone number. Be sure you tell your attorney the name of the creditor who contacted you.

If you are not in your first bankruptcy case, especially if you have recently had a case dismissed, the automatic stay may be limited, or might not exist at all, unless the Bankruptcy Court extends or imposes the stay. Please contact your attorney if you have had a case dismissed prior to filing your current case.

While you are in a Chapter 13, you should not contact your creditors. Also, you may not pick and choose to pay some creditors “on the side.” All debts must be dealt with through your Chapter 13 plan. Any payment you make “on the side” is improper and could result in legal action against you. All creditors must be paid according to the Chapter 13 plan, not according to your wishes. If you do not comply with this procedure, you may lose the protection provided by the Bankruptcy Court.

This web site is for informational purposes only. The Office of the Chapter 13 Trustee does not render legal advice. If you have a legal question concerning a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, please contact your attorney.