Top 7 TO DO’s before Bankruptcy: Item 6 – Be Open and Honest with Your Attorney

By David J. Kelly, Minnesota Bankruptcy Attorney

Please Just Tell me the Truth

Sorry, but there is no substitute for being forthcoming with your lawyer, even if it’s embarrassing or awkward to disclose certain information. Spending time at a casino ? I really need to know that. Living off relatives? Tell me all about it. Fired from your job? Better give me the whole unpleasant story. Been taken financial advantage of by a significant other? You don’t have to be shy with me. And there isn’t much I haven’t heard over the years. Many of the reviews say I’m not judgmental. I believe you can expect to find that this is true.

Let’s You and Me Stay Out of Jail

All your debts have to be disclosed. So do all your assets. Concealing a debt, an asset or some of your income is considered bankruptcy fraud. So is not being entirely truthful about what debts you have been paying and any relationship you might have with any particular creditor. It might seem innocent to you, and maybe it really is, but the law considers it a crime. No client of mine has ever gone to jail for bankruptcy fraud, and I would like to keep it that way. These days under current law, if my client is going to jail there’s a good chance I would be going with them. Let’s both of us stay out of jail.

Just tell me all about it. Very unlikely that it’s something I’ve never heard before.

Not the Time for Creativity

Don’t try to be creative. Because every dishonest scheme you can think of has already been thought of. No, you can’t sell your boat to your brother for a dollar. And you can’t have a friend hold some money for you. The bankruptcy trustees have the resources of the FBI available if they get suspicious. As a result, there isn’t anything they can’t find out.

Once the bankruptcy is filed, your right of privacy is pretty much gone with respect to any of the information required for the case – and that’s most everything there is to know about you. Even if there are not criminal charges, there are plenty of other sanctions. Your case could be dismissed without a discharge. The discharge could be denied for all or some of your debt. If you get a discharge, it could be revoked. And that asset you were trying to hide, whatever it is you probably are going to lose it.

Give Me a Chance to Solve the Problem

Your attorney is on your side. The information which I ask for is necessary to successfully file your bankruptcy case. If you would just be truthful with me, I can probably figure out a legal way to fix whatever you are thinking the problem might be. Most of the things people have lied to me about could have been dealt with successfully IF ONLY my client would have told me about it BEFORE the case was filed.


I am a debt relief agency. I help people file for bankruptcy relief under the federal bankruptcy code. This post is for general information purposes only and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is not legal advice. Seek the advice of the attorney of your choice concerning the details of your case.

Call Dave at 952-544-6356

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