Losing a job and being out of work for a few weeks is bad enough – money is tight until you get that first paycheck, but many people make it through with little to no consequences. However, with the pandemic in play, people lost jobs and could not go back to work because of lockdowns. Even if businesses opened after a couple of months and you received unemployment, you probably got pretty far behind in paying bills.

A bankruptcy attorney at Clark & Washington, P.C., can help you get back on your feet and become debt-free.

Virtual Free Consultations

One of the changes to the bankruptcy process is that you do not have to meet with us in person to file bankruptcy. We can hold the consultation by video chat or by phone. We use email to forward the documents you need to complete. When you need help completing the documents, our office is a phone call away.

341 Meetingsbankruptcy attorneys

Once the bankruptcy attorney files the debtor’s bankruptcy case, the clerk assigns a bankruptcy judge and a trustee. The trustee manages the bankruptcy case, including collecting amounts due on Chapter 13 plans and collecting and selling assets in Chapter 7 bankruptcies.

The trustee also holds the 341 Meeting of Creditors. During the pandemic, the trustee conducts the 341 Meetings by video call on Zoom or via telephone. The bankruptcy trustee will ask you several questions about your finances. Creditors might attend the 341 Meeting, and they can also ask questions about your finances.

Original Signatures

Prior to the pandemic, a debtor had to sign certain documents with pen and ink. During the pandemic, attorneys conduct consultations by phone, which makes it impossible to obtain an in-person “wet” signature.

The bankruptcy court issued General Order 38-2020 on or about July 1, 2020, defining an “original signature.” For the duration of the pandemic, an original signature is a wet signature wherein the debtor signs the document with pen and ink. The order also allows two additional types of original signatures:

  • Through an e-signing digital management software application that provides for an audit trail (DocuSign, AdobeSign, PandaDoc).
  • Via an image format through email.

Continuing Changes

While the pandemic is winding down, researchers have determined that several mutations of Covid-19 have been found. Because researchers and doctors cannot yet determine whether the Covid-19 vaccine works on any of the mutations, our office will continue to offer virtual consultations and will work with debtors to obtain:

  • The necessary documents to complete the bankruptcy schedules. Debtors can mail or email their documents.
  • Original signatures on documents. If the debtor does not have a computer or internet access, we will work with the debtor to obtain an original signature on the necessary documents. Maintaining a six-foot distance from debtors and keeping the office sanitized significantly reduces the spread of Covid from one person to another.
  • Telephonic or video hearings and 341 Meetings.

Any in-person meetings we would normally request for review of bankruptcy documents and for other reasons will be held via video call or telephonically. However, we prefer at least one video call so that we can get to know you as closely as possible under the circumstances

Contact a Georgia Bankruptcy Attorney

If you are having a hard time paying your bills because you lost work due to the pandemic or for any other reason, contact a Georgia bankruptcy attorney at Clark & Washington, P.C., to schedule a free consultation and to learn more about becoming debt-free.