Can I Move Out-of-State While My Bankruptcy Is Going On?

by Wendell Sherk, Missouri Bankruptcy Attorney

October 19, 2009

Moving CartAmericans tend to move a lot.  When the economy is in distress, folks often move out of state in search of work or lower cost of living.  If you filed bankruptcy, do you have to stay put while the case is going on?  Does your case have to move to another court?

The answer is pretty simple, usually.  Bankruptcy doesn’t bar you from moving.  And your case can continue as it was originally set up.  There is usually no need for the case to change from one court to a new one where you are moving.

Remember — even if you are in a long-term case like a Chapter 11 or Chapter 13, the case is normally filed and continues where you live at the time of filing.  The federal bankruptcy law applies across the country and it specifically continues to control your relationship with your creditors even if you move to another state.  Or even another country.

There may be reasons why the “venue” of your case should be transferred to a new court. But it is not required simply because you moved.

You should make sure to talk to your lawyer about the relocation before you do it, though.  There may be unique reasons for your case why it is a bad idea, or should be delayed.  And she will definitely want to be able to keep in touch with you and be sure the court and trustee can send you any important notices about your case.

And if you are in a case right now and changed your address or phone number without telling your lawyer, make sure to get in touch with her right away. Bad things can happen if your lawyer can’t find you quickly.

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I have been a bankruptcy attorney since 1989. Our firm represents consumers filing bankruptcy almost exclusively. My partner and I have each represented bankruptcy trustees as well as creditors. If you live in Eastern Missouri, visit our website, send an e-mail or give us a call (314) 781-3400. Our website: STLBankruptcy.com

Last modified: May 21, 2013