While the debtor education course is not required to file for bankruptcy, you must complete it before the court will discharge your debt. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you must be certified within 60 days of the initial date set for your meeting of creditors, and for Chapter 13, you must be certified before your payment plan is completed. If you fail to do so your case can be closed without discharge, and you’ll have to pay additional fees to reopen it. And, short of a cognitive disability that prevents you from understanding the course or a deployment to an active military zone, it’s unlikely you can be excused from this requirement.

Again, the course can be taken in person, over the phone or online, but this time centers on your life after bankruptcy. You’ll receive tips on money management, working with a budget and using credit properly so you can avoid getting into the same situation again. A list of approved debtor education providers can be found here, and the same payment guidelines apply to debtor education as to the credit counseling course.

If you need assistance with your bankruptcy, or just have questions, please contact our bankruptcy lawyers for a free consultation.