How to file bankruptcy – #13 in a series – Cure Amounts

22 Mar How to file bankruptcy – #13 in a series – Cure Amounts

So you thought we were done with the Means Test? Ha! If you’re planning to file a bankruptcy case, it might be that you are behind in your payments under your mortgage. In that case, you can and should deduct the amount of money you’d have to pay to “cure” the default in your mortgage. This is true whether or not you are actually planning to keep your house.

Here’s an example where the Means Test seems to be a bit of a warp of reality.

Congress wants you to figure out how much you’d have to pay every month for 5 years to catch up in your mortgage if you were planning to file a chapter 13 case whether or not you (a) are going to file a chapter 13 case or (b) planning to even keep your house. And what Congress wants, Congress gets when it comes to bankruptcy.

So, before you file a bankruptcy case, you need to figure out exactly what you’d have to pay to bring y0ur mortgage current if you are behind. Don’t forget to include all the little extras that mortgage companies are so eager to charge you such as:

  • late fees
  • appraisals
  • drive by inspections
  • forced placed insurance
  • attorneys fees
  • title charges
  • service charges for foreclosure cases which have been commenced

If you don’t know how much you owe your mortgage company, you can write a letter to your lender and ask. And they have to answer. Make a Qualified Written Request. If you don’t know what that is, check out our post on Qualified Written Requests at

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Jay S. Fleischman is a bankruptcy lawyer with offices in Los Angeles and New York. He can often be found on Google+ and Twitter, where he shares information about consumer protection issues and personal finance.
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