Pre-Petition Claims For Consumer Law Violations Must Be Disclosed In Bankruptcy

28 Sep Pre-Petition Claims For Consumer Law Violations Must Be Disclosed In Bankruptcy

Let’s say you file for bankruptcy and realize only after the fact that you have a possible claim for a violation of a consumer law – Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, Truth-In-Lending Act . . . well, you get the picture.

If you fail to amend your bankruptcy papers to disclose that cause of action you will lose the right to bring a lawsuit later on. Forfeiting that right can mean a significant loss of recovery for you – from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars or more.

The fact is this – you are required to disclose ALL interests in property, including all rights of recovery, on your bankruptcy papers. If you fail to do so not only will you lose the right to bring the cause of action, but you may also subject yourself to civil and criminal penalties for failing to make full disclosures on your bankruptcy papers.

This is a major reason why consumer bankruptcy lawyers need to be aware of consumer law claims, and how to spot them. A failure to appropriately disclose may cause a client to lose significant recoveries.

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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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