Debtors can move during an active bankruptcy case. Often, debtors move due to employment opportunities somewhere else or because they have decided to surrender their home. Being able to attend any mandatory court dates is important if the debtor wants to move while his case is ongoing. The debtor’s attorney and the bankruptcy court should be notified of the new address so the debtor can continue to receive updates regarding his case.
Communicate with Bankruptcy Attorney
Notify the bankruptcy attorney as soon as possible when planning to move to a new residence. Many bankruptcy attorneys regularly mail information regarding cases to their clients. The attorney can update his client’s contact information when he is notified of the move date and given the new address. Some debtors may not move very far from their old residence, but other debtors may move to a different state or country. It is possible to maintain effective communication with the attorney through email and over the phone if meeting with the attorney in person is no longer convenient.
Change of Address Notice
File a change of address notice with the bankruptcy court. If an attorney is handling the case, he will submit this notice to the court on the debtor’s behalf. Once the change of address is filed with the court, the court will notify the creditors of the debtor’s new address. The bankruptcy court and the creditors need to always be informed of the correct address for the debtor. Creditors send letters to the debtor and debtor’s attorney regarding information related to the creditor’s claim. The court sends notices to the debtor regarding court dates, the status of the case, and advises the debtor of any additional information or documents needed to process the case. Failure of the debtor to receive notices sent by the court or creditors may prevent the debtor from fulfilling his obligations and could negatively affect the case.
Court Hearing Dates
The location of the court presiding over the case is based on the debtor’s address when the case was filed. The debtor should take into consideration any court dates he will need to attend prior to moving. Debtors are required to attend a meeting of creditors after they file the bankruptcy case. During the meeting, the bankruptcy trustee handling the case will ask the debtor questions about his debts and income. If the debtor does not attend the meeting, the bankruptcy court may dismiss the case. The debtor should discuss any other hearing dates he may be required to attend with his bankruptcy attorney.
Fill out a change of address form at the post office or complete the form online. Even if the new address isn’t updated right away with the bankruptcy court, any notices the court or creditors send to the old address will be forwarded to the proper location. Remaining diligent about the status of the case and making sure all interested parties are informed about the new contact information will ultimately improve the chances of the case being completed and discharged.
- Cornell University Law School: §341 Meeting of Creditors
- Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure
- United States Courts. "Chapter 7 - Bankruptcy Basics." Accessed Feb. 16, 2020.
- National Consumer Law Center. "Increase of Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions, Other Dollar Amounts: April 1, 2019." Accessed Feb. 16, 2020.
- Debt.org. "Chapter 7 Bankruptcy." Accessed Feb. 16, 2020.
- United States Department of Justice. "Means Testing." Accessed Feb. 16, 2020.
Pamela Parker became a freelance writer in 2009. She has worked in bankruptcy law since 2007. She writes extensively on bankruptcy and financial topics, with her work appearing on various websites. Parker has a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Brown University and a Juris Doctor from the University of San Diego School of Law.