2020 Best Invention
Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad

Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad

Attorney

Kristin is a recipient of Harvard Law School’s Public Welfare Foundation A2J Tech Fellowship. At Harvard Law, she served as a member of the Harvard Defenders, the Women’s Law Association, and the Harvard Law Negotiation Review. She was the 2016 – 2017 president of the Harvard Black Law Students Association and a semifinalist in Harvard Business School’s New Venture Competition 2016. She holds a B.A. in political science from the University of Southern California and served on the executive committee for the Harvard Law School Association. Before Upsolve, Kristin spent time at White & Case LLP in Palo Alto, Public Defender Service in Washington DC, and the Department of Justice, specializing in Human Rights. Kristin was an invited speaker at the Legal Service Corporations’s 2019 Innovations in Technology Conference.


All ArticlesAfter BankruptcyBankruptcy BasicsBefore FilingCarsChapter 13Chapter 7Consumer RightsCourtCreditors MeetingDebtsDeciding To FileDuring Bankruptcy CaseHow To FileLeasesMeans TestNon BankruptcyNondischargeable DebtsProperty ExemptionsStudent LoansTaxesUpsolveWage Garnishment

Articles written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad

What Is Community Debt?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated June 29, 2022

Community debt is any debt that you or your spouse incur while married or any debt for which you and your spouse are co-signers. There are 10 community property states where spouses or legal partners may have community debt. This article outlines the 10 community property states and how having community debt may affect your bankruptcy filing.

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Chapter 7 Means Test Calculator

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated June 29, 2022

The Chapter 7 means test is the analysis that determines whether a person can file Chapter 7 bankruptcy. It’s called the bankruptcy means test because, at its most basic level, it looks at whether someone has the means to pay their debts.

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How Does Bankruptcy Affect My Retirement?

Written by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated June 17, 2022

Because retirement accounts are protected by exemptions, most people who file bankruptcy keep all their existing retirement savings. Many types of retirement accounts have an unlimited exemption amount, but some — like IRAs — are limited. Social Security benefits are also exempt, but the funds can't be commingled. You must keep them in a separate account.

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What Happens to Your Tax Refund in Bankruptcy

Written by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated June 10, 2022

Refunds for taxes you paid on income you earned before you filed your bankruptcy case, will be part of your bankruptcy estate. If you receive your refund and spend it on necessary expenses before you file bankruptcy, it doesn’t become a part of your bankruptcy estate. But if you hold on to the money, the trustee may be able to access the funds if they aren't protected by an exemption. In Chapter 7, refunds for taxes you paid after you filed bankruptcy aren’t part of your estate. But in Chapter 13, your estate includes all the tax refunds you receive during your 3-5 year payment plan. You can avoid turning future refunds over to your trustee by adjusting your tax withholding so you don’t overpay your income taxes.

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If a Creditor Was Charged Off, Do I Still Need To List Them?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated April 19, 2022

Just because a creditor has charged off a debt doesn't mean that you don’t owe it anymore. That's why you'll still need to list the creditor on your bankruptcy forms. Having a debt charged off only means that the creditor has decided the debt is uncollectible for accounting purposes.

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If I Have a Debt That's Not Dischargeable, Should I Still List It?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated April 19, 2022

Yes. You must list every debt you have on your forms. The court needs to know about all of them. 

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I Don’t Have the Names of My Doctors. Is That Okay?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated April 19, 2022

Yes, that's fine. Just do your best when you write down the names, addresses, and amounts owed to your creditors. If possible, please Google around to find info you don't know off the top of your head.  

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Should I Choose Federal or State Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated April 19, 2022

The exemptions you choose will play a big role in determining how much of your stuff the trustee can sell to repay your creditors. Most Upsolve users select the federal exemptions, but the choice that's right for you will depend on your answers to two questions.

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Can I Buy a House After Bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated April 19, 2022

There are multiple financing options available to buyers post-bankruptcy. The most important step is to make the most of your waiting period before you apply for a loan.

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Debt Relief Programs and Financial Resources for Veterans

Written by Attorney Jenni Klock Morel
Updated April 13, 2022

There are many debt-relief programs and resources for veterans and active-duty service members alike. Some focus on helping military personnel with homeownership while others focus on managing your finances and debts. It’s especially important for active-duty military members to keep their finances in order. This will help you get or maintain security clearances. This article covers the most common debt relief programs and financial resources for veterans and active-duty service members.

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How do I find out if I'm required to file taxes?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated April 12, 2022

Federal Taxes: All taxpayers are eligible to claim a standard deduction from their taxable income. This amount is based on your filing status and household size. State Taxes: If you are required a Federal Tax return, you usually need to file a state tax return as well.

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How can I surrender my car in Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 12, 2022

"Surrendering" your car means that you give it back to the lender that gave you the loan to purchase it. If you surrender your car as part of your Chapter 7 bankruptcy, any debt that you owe on it will be eliminated when you receive your bankruptcy discharge.

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How can I surrender my car in Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 12, 2022

"Surrendering" your car means that you give it back to the lender that gave you the loan to purchase it. If you surrender your car as part of your Chapter 7 bankruptcy, any debt that you owe on it will be eliminated when you receive your bankruptcy discharge.

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Can Filing Bankruptcy Help With a Repossession?

Written by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated April 6, 2022

So long as your car hasn’t already been auctioned or sold, filing bankruptcy can help stop repossession. If you file Chapter 7, the automatic stay gives you time to negotiate new, more affordable loan terms with your car lender. It can also get rid of a deficiency judgment if your car is repossessed and sold. Filling Chapter 13 can help you reorganize your auto loan debt to get a more affordable monthly payment and spread out past-due payments over several years.

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What if I Can’t Afford to Pay a Judgment Against Me?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 5, 2022

If you’ve fallen behind with your bills, you might be worried about getting sued or having a court judgment entered against you. This article covers what happens if you default on a debt, how you can make sure you don’t forfeit your chance to prevent a judgment, and what collection actions to expect from a judgment creditor.

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What Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy & Should I File?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad, Rohan PavuluriLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated April 1, 2022

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a common legal process to clear your debt, but it’s not right for everyone. Let’s take a look at some bankruptcy basics to help you learn about it and decide whether it's right for you.

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Federal Bankruptcy Exemptions Explained

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 31, 2022

The laws that protect your property from creditors are called exemptions. The exemptions listed in the Bankruptcy Code are called federal bankruptcy exemptions.

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What is an Emergency Bankruptcy Filing?

Written by Attorney Paige Hooper
Updated March 10, 2022

An emergency bankruptcy filing is when you file only the minimum required forms to get a bankruptcy case going. It helps you file your case quickly. Emergency filings are helpful if you need to stop serious collection measures like repossession, foreclosure, or wage garnishment. Once you file an emergency bankruptcy case, you need to complete the remaining paperwork within 14 days or you risk having your case dismissed.

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Should I File Bankruptcy Before Getting Married?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 9, 2022

If you’re planning to get married and you also need to deal with debt, you’re probably wondering when to file bankruptcy and how it will affect your spouse. There are pros and cons to filing for bankruptcy before marriage as well as filing after marriage. If you want to start your marriage with a clean financial slate and you qualify for Chapter 7, that’s a relatively quick way to achieve that goal. If you already have joint debts with your spouse-to-be, you may want to file after you get married to take advantage of more generous exemptions.

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Does Bankruptcy Affect My Social Security Income?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated February 22, 2022

Social security income does not count on the means test. Any social security funds you have will be protected by an exemption as long as they're not commingled.

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What Are Bankruptcy-Friendly Credit Cards?

Written by Attorney John Coble
Updated January 27, 2022

It’s important to rebuild your credit after a bankruptcy. The good news is that you’ll get plenty of offers for credit after your bankruptcy discharge. The bad news is that some of those offers won’t be great, with high interest rates or hidden fees. If you want to rebuild your credit, you need to find the right card to work for you. Read on to learn about some of your options.

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Where Can I Get Taxes Done for Free?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated January 26, 2022

If you need help filing your taxes, the IRS has free tax help centers available.

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Will My Bankruptcy Affect My Child's 529 College Saving Plan?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated January 26, 2022

If you've deposited funds into a 529 College Savings Plan for your child, you probably want to know how filing bankrtupcy will affect them. Whether the funds are protected will depend on how long ago you deposited them.

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Can I Keep the Money if I Win a Lawsuit After Filing?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated January 26, 2022

If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your state's exemption law will determine whether you can keep the money from a lawsuit. Be prepared to give it up unless your state exemption law specifically says that you can keep the award.

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Should I List My PayPal Account?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated January 26, 2022

If you have a PayPal Credit account, you should list it as a creditor on your bankruptcy forms. If it's a standard PayPal account without any lines of credit, list it as a checking account in the financial accounts section. 

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How Much Money Is Considered a Gift?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated January 26, 2022

The bankruptcy forms ask whether you gave gifts with a total value of more than $600 per person in the two years before you filed for bankruptcy.

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How Do I Value My Pet?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated January 25, 2022

If you're filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, you're required to include your pets in the schedules. While your pets are priceless, your bankruptcy trustee needs to know if they can be sold for more than the allowable exemption amount. Unless you have a rare, purebred, champion show animal with breeding rights that can generate income, it's not likely your pets will be worth more than what you can exempt.

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Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: What Can You Keep?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated January 25, 2022

Chapter 7 bankruptcy exemptions allow you to protect property during your bankruptcy. Usually these exemptions allow you to keep most of your day-to-day property.

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What Are the Pros and Cons of Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 12, 2021

Filing for bankruptcy offers a powerful way to eliminate debt and get a fresh start. But, as with everything there are downsides to filing bankruptcy, too. Use this article to explore the advantages and drawbacks of Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

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How Can I Get Debt Collectors To Stop Calling Me?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated December 11, 2021

If you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you can tell bill collectors that your filed, and they must stop calling you under the law.

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6 Steps To Stop Wage Garnishment After Filing Bankruptcy

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 8, 2021

Wage garnishments have to stop immediately once your case is filed but you should allow time for the creditor to provide your employer with the necessary paperwork to actually cause the stop. If your case is filed the day before your next payday, chances are you're paycheck will still be garnished, as the payroll has already been processed. However, you'll get that money back.

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What Are The Different Types Of Bankruptcies?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 29, 2021

Bankruptcy has helped millions of Americans relieve their debt burden and get a fresh start. There are different types of bankruptcies, so it's important to know the differences and similarities.

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How to Answer a Summons When You Are Sued

Written by Attorney John Coble
Updated November 29, 2021

If you have yet to begin filing bankruptcy you may choose to answer the complaint. A summons can certainly lead to more drastic legal actions when not handled properly. You have a certain amount of time to answer the summons and if you fail to answer it could result in a default judgment.  

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What is Legal Aid and Why Does it Exist

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 29, 2021

Legal aid and pro bono attorneys can help you get through your bankruptcy filing. Find out how they work and why they exist.

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What Is a Bankruptcy Trustee?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 13, 2021

The bankruptcy trustee doesn’t represent the filer and they don’t represent any specific creditor. They review the filer's forms and conduct the creditors' meeting.

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What are the Florida Bankruptcy Exemptions?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 6, 2021

If you're a debtor filing for bankruptcy and you live in Florida, you'll be using the Florida bankruptcy exemptions to protect your property.

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If I file for bankruptcy, will it hurt my co-signer’s credit score?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 30, 2021

No. A co-signer’s social security number will not be involved, and the bankruptcy does not go on their credit.

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If I file for bankruptcy, will it hurt my co-signer’s credit score?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 30, 2021

No. A co-signer’s social security number will not be involved, and the bankruptcy does not go on their credit.

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How Much Does Bankruptcy Cost?

Written by Attorney Jenni Klock MorelLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 29, 2021

Bankruptcy costs include court filing fees, credit counseling course fees, and if you hire a bankruptcy lawyer, attorney fees. The total cost will largely depend on your financial situation, the complexity of your case, and whether you file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

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How Can I Stop My Wages From Being Garnished?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 29, 2021

Wage garnishment is a common problem for millions of Americans. It can be deflating to have your wages garnished. But you do have options to protect yourself.

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How To Stop Wage Garnishment With Bankruptcy in New York?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 19, 2021

If you live in New York and your wages are being garnished, bankruptcy may be able to help you keep your paychecks and stop wage garnishment.

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How To Stop Wage Garnishment With Bankruptcy in New York?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 19, 2021

If you live in New York and your wages are being garnished, bankruptcy may be able to help you keep your paychecks and stop wage garnishment.

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What is the difference between an EIN, TIN, and ITIN?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated October 18, 2021

The acronyms that the IRS uses to identify the different types of taxpayer identification numbers can be confusing, and we get a lot of questions about these three in particular.

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What Happens After Filing for Bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Jenni Klock Morel
Updated October 2, 2021

Knowing what happens after you file bankruptcy can make it seem less intimidating. Read on to learn about filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the meeting of creditors, keeping your car, and why creditors must stop contacting you after filing.

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Is a bankruptcy discharge public record?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated October 2, 2021

There are a few, limited ways that your bankruptcy becomes public record.This alone shouldn't stop you from choosing to file for bankruptcy.

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How Bankruptcy Affects Credit Score

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated September 22, 2021

There are a lot of misconceptions about the ways bankruptcy affects credit score. In this article, we'll dispel some of these myths and provide information on how to improve your credit score after bankruptcy.

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Will My Landlord Be Notified That I Filed for Bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 15, 2021

Your landlord will be notified when you file for bankruptcy if you're on a lease. If you are on a month-to-month rental agreement, then the landlord won't be notified that you filed. 

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Will My Landlord Be Notified That I Filed for Bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 15, 2021

Your landlord will be notified when you file for bankruptcy if you're on a lease. If you are on a month-to-month rental agreement, then the landlord won't be notified that you filed. 

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Should I List My Student Loans Even if They Can't Be Erased?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated September 15, 2021

Yes. You should include all your debts on your bankruptcy forms, even if some cannot be erased. 

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What Goes Into a Credit Score?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated August 27, 2021

Your credit score is determined by several factors, including payment history, how much of your credit you're using, what types of credit you have, how long your credit history is, and how much new credit you've applied for recently. Your score helps lenders understand how well you manage credit as a borrower. You can proactively work to improve your credit score and build a strong financial future.

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A Creditor Is Suing Me. What Should I Do?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated August 27, 2021

When you file your bankruptcy paperwork, you will need to mention any lawsuits creditors have brought against you.

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Can You File Bankruptcy if You Haven't Filed Tax Returns?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated August 20, 2021

To file bankruptcy, you'll need to have filed your last two years of tax returns if you were employed and required to do so. If you weren't employed or required to file taxes, you don't need to worry about filing tax returns before filing bankruptcy.

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Discharging student loans in bankruptcy: The Brunner Test

Written by Amy CarstLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated March 1, 2021

Under the current Bankruptcy Code, an individual cannot discharge student loans in bankruptcy unless retaining this type of student debt would cause undue hardship. To determine whether such a hardship exists, the bankruptcy courts conduct an analysis known as the Brunner test.

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Bankruptcy Credit Counseling & Financial Management Courses

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated January 5, 2021

If you’re filing bankruptcy to wipe away your debt you’ll need to take two educational courses. A credit counseling course before filing your case and a financial management course after filing.

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My case was dismissed. When can I refile a new case or reopen my case?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated December 30, 2020

As soon as a bankruptcy case is dismissed, the automatic stay ends and collections can resume. You can either reinstate your case or file a new bankruptcy one.

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Five Essential Tips to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated December 29, 2020

Chapter 7 bankruptcy does not have to be complicated. Follow these 5 essential tips to make sure you have a successful case.

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What is a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 14, 2020

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a type of bankruptcy that provides relief for folks who make too much money to qualify for Chapter 7. At its core, it’s a reorganization that allows the filer to pay as much as their budget can handle instead of trying to keep up with each creditors’ minimum monthly payments.

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Where Can I Find Free Bankruptcy Chapter 7 Forms?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated December 1, 2020

Filing for bankruptcy can seem confusing, and the paperwork itself can be daunting. Find the bankrutpcy forms for free.

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How to Get a Free Bankruptcy Consultation in New York?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated December 1, 2020

How to find a free Chapter 7 bankruptcy consultation in New York City. A bankruptcy attorney will help you decide between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.

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How to Stop Wage Garnishment in California with Bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated December 1, 2020

Wage garnishment is a way for debt collectors to take money directly from your paycheck. In California, your income level and amount of debt you have can determine how much of your wages can be garnished.

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What is the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Timeline?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 1, 2020

Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can be an intimidating and daunting process. Especially if it's not something you've ever dealt with before, you may not know where to begin or how it ends. Here is an overview of what to expect as you prepare for your Chapter 7 bankruptcy and what happens after your case has been filed with the bankruptcy court. 

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What is the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Timeline?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated December 1, 2020

Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can be an intimidating and daunting process. Especially if it's not something you've ever dealt with before, you may not know where to begin or how it ends. Here is an overview of what to expect as you prepare for your Chapter 7 bankruptcy and what happens after your case has been filed with the bankruptcy court. 

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Should I be Embarrassed About Filing for Bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 30, 2020

Should I be embarrassed by a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing? We'll let you know how you should think about your discharge of your debts.

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Should I be Embarrassed About Filing for Bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated November 30, 2020

Should I be embarrassed by a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing? We'll let you know how you should think about your discharge of your debts.

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How to Find a Bankruptcy Attorney Near Me

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 25, 2020

Tips for finding a bankruptcy attorney.

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How Can I Find a Free Bankruptcy Lawyer in New York City?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 10, 2020

If you're looking for an affordable bankruptcy lawyer, look no further. Upsolve is a nonprofit that helps low-income Americans get the fresh start they need through Chapter 7 bankruptcy. We'll also help you look at other resources for affordable bankruptcy lawyers.

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Do I Qualify for Bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 10, 2020

Do you qualify for bankruptcy? There are a lot of things to consider, and we try to break it down for you. At Upsolve, we provide free Chapter 7 bankruptcy services for those in need of a fresh start.

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10 Tips for DIY Bankruptcy Chapter 7

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 10, 2020

Looking for a way to do a DIY Chapter 7 Bankruptcy? Here’s 10 tips to make sure you DIY Chapter 7 bankruptcy goes off without a hitch.

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Best Do It Yourself Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Software

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 10, 2020

Bankruptcy doesn't have to be expensive or confusing. You can use do-it-yourself Chapter 7 bankruptcy software online. Check out Upsolve to get started with our free bankruptcy process.

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How to Stop Debt Collection Companies?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated November 9, 2020

Do you want to stop debt collection companies? You may need to do more than to request that they stop contacting you.

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Is Upsolve real? Is this a legitimate service?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 20, 2020

Yes! Upsolve is 100% a legitimate service! We are a small mission-driven team of dedicated individuals, focused on a single goal: Helping low-income Americans struggling with too much debt get a fresh start by filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

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Can Upsolve help me get my student loans discharged?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated October 16, 2020

Unfortunately, no. Upsolve's free tool helps you file bankruptcy on your own but it can't help you discharge a student loan.

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What is an asset in bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated October 16, 2020

Everything you own is an asset. Whether your property is valuable enough to turn your case into an asset bankruptcy depends on what bankruptcy exemptions you can use to protect your property.

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Low Income Bankruptcy: Find the Option for You

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated October 14, 2020

There are special options available to low-income people filing for bankruptcy. Find out if one is right for you.

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Can I mention the Upsolve website to my trustee?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated September 17, 2020

Yes. You should always be truthful. Make sure to mention that Upsolve is a legal aid nonprofit that charges nothing. 

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What does it mean to surrender your car in bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 8, 2020

If you surrender your car as part of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your car debt is erased by the bankruptcy discharge.

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Should I Update My Forms If I Get a New Job Before Filing?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 8, 2020

Congratulations on your new job! If you haven't filed yet, and you really don't know what your monthly income will be until your first paycheck comes in, you have one of two options for how to handle this.

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3 Things You Should Know About Bankruptcy Course 2

Written by Amy CarstLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated September 3, 2020

Every individual seeking bankruptcy relief must complete two educational courses: The credit counseling course is completed before the bankruptcy petition is filed with the court. The second course, on the other hand, can’t be completed until after the case has been filed. Without completing both courses, a bankruptcy filer cannot get their bankruptcy discharge. Here are 3 things you should know about the personal financial management course, including how it's different from credit counseling.

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Where can I take the first credit counseling course?

Written by the Upsolve Team
Updated August 17, 2020

You can take the course from any provider that has been approved to offer the course by the United States Trustee.

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How Do I Reaffirm My Car Loan?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 11, 2020

The 6-step process of reaffirming a car loan.

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How Do I Reaffirm My Car Loan?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 11, 2020

The 6-step process of reaffirming a car loan.

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4 things you should know about the bankruptcy court system

Written by Attorney Jamie Lee Ruiz
Updated August 9, 2020

The bankruptcy court oversees bankruptcy cases filed in the United States. The court maintains the records for all bankruptcy cases.

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What are the alternatives to Chapter 7 bankruptcy?

Written by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated August 7, 2020

Bankruptcy is not right for everyone or every situation. If you're not sure whether bankruptcy is right for you, knowing what alternatives are available to give you some relief from your debts is a critical part of making the right decision for you and your family. Let's take a look at some of the most common bankruptcy alternatives.

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What is an "Official Form 309A -- No Proof of Claim?"

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated August 7, 2020

The court sends this document to the creditors you listed on your bankruptcy paperwork when you file. It gives each creditor important information about your case and tells them what they need to do if they have a reasonable objection to your bankruptcy.

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If I received a discharge, when can I refile?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 30, 2020

If your bankruptcy was fully discharged, you can refile bankruptcy after a certain amount of time has passed. If you file before the time limit is up, you will not be entitled to have your debts discharged.

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I am planning to get married soon after I file. Will my bankruptcy affect my spouse?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

Usually your individual bankruptcy will not affect your new spouse. If you are filing for a Chapter 7, is can be helpful to wait until after you receive your discharge to get married just in case.

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I receive money from social security. Can I file for bankruptcy?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

Definitely. Getting money from social security does not disqualify you from filing for bankruptcy with Upsolve. You should take our online screener to see if you meet our either criteria. 

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What do I list as my address if I lived overseas 3 years ago?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

Questions about your addresses on your bankruptcy forms are used to determine one of two things: 1. Which state you are eligible to file bankruptcy in and 2. Which state's exemptions you can use to protect your assets.

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Should I use a law firm or file for myself?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

This is up to you to decide. If you can afford $1000+ for an attorney, they are often a good investment. If you cannot, our team at Upsolve would love to guide you through your filing at every step of the way. 

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How many steps are there from start to finish before I file?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

There are six pre-filing steps, and we will guide you every step of the way.

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How can I schedule a meeting with Upsolve?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

Unfortunately, we do not schedule meetings with our users. We wish we could. We love our users. But sadly, we don't do calls or live chats. We get 100+ inquiries a day, so we don't have the resources as a cash-strapped nonprofit.

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Why doesn't my car appear on my exemptions list?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

There are a few reasons that your car(s) might not be listed on your exemptions list.

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I want to redeem my car. When do I do it?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

"Redeeming" your car means that you buy it from the lender that you financed it with for the fair market value of the car, paid to the lender in one lump sum. The rest of your loan is discharged.

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Which states allow me to use the federal bankruptcy exemptions?

Written by the Upsolve TeamLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated July 22, 2020

Find out which states allow filers to choose between their state's exemptions and the federal bankruptcy exemptions.

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Will someone show up in court against me?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

In virtually all Chapter 7 cases that do not involve expensive property, no creditors show up to court against you. It's very, very, very unlikely that anybody will show up in court against you. 

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How do I find out who my trustee is?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

You find out who your trustee is after you file your bankruptcy paperwork. You'll either learn right away from the court who your trustee is, or you'll get mail a few days later with your trustee's information.  

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I received a letter for a Meeting of Creditors. What is this?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

Your meeting of creditors is the meeting that takes place at the court between you and your trustee. This is also known as a 341 meeting. 

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I received a letter for a 341 meeting. What is this?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

A 341 meeting is the same as the meeting of the creditors. This is the meeting between you and the trustee who oversees your case. It usually takes place at your local court. 

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Filing for Bankruptcy with Electronic Self-Representation (ESR)

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

This article provides an overview of Electronic Self-Representation and how you can use it to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy by yourself without the help of an attorney. If you can't afford an attorney, but don't want to go through the process on your own, Upsolve may be able to help!

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If I tell the trustee I forgot to list a creditor will she reschedule my 341?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

In most cases, no.  Although you can mention it during the 341 meeting. Trustees are usually concerned with assets that can be distributed to creditors, more than debts.

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I missed my 341 Meeting! What should I do now?

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad
Updated July 22, 2020

If you miss your scheduled 341 Meeting it is imperative that you speak with your assigned trustee ASAP and reschedule!

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La bancarrota del Capítulo 7: ¿Qué es? ¿Debo declararme en bancarrota? ¿Cómo lo hago?

Written by Rohan Pavuluri, Kristin Turner, Harvard Law GradLegally reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated May 25, 2021

La bancarrota (conocida también como quiebra) del Capítulo 7 es un proceso legal común que puede eliminar tus deudas, pero no es necesariamente la mejor opción para todo el mundo. Vamos a revisar un poco de información básica sobre la bancarrota para ayudarte a aprender sobre ella y decidir si es lo mejor para ti.

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Upsolve is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that started in 2016. Our mission is to help low-income families who cannot afford lawyers file bankruptcy for free, using an online web app. Spun out of Harvard Law School, our team includes lawyers, engineers, and judges. We have world-class funders that include the U.S. government, former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, and leading foundations. It's one of the greatest civil rights injustices of our time that low-income families can’t access their basic rights when they can’t afford to pay for help. Combining direct services and advocacy, we’re fighting this injustice.

To learn more, read why we started Upsolve in 2016, our reviews from past users, and our press coverage from places like the New York Times and Wall Street Journal.