Should I estimate my income if I haven't filed taxes yet?

3,730 families have filed bankruptcy using Upsolve

In a Nutshell

If you do not have official documents, it is OK to estimate your gross income. If you do not feel comfortable estimating you can look at your most recent pay statement and use it to find your gross (before taxes) income year to date.

Written by Attorney Jonathan Petts.  
Updated July 22, 2020


If you do not have official documents, it is OK to estimate your gross income. If you do not feel comfortable estimating you can:

  1. Look at your most recent pay statement and use it to find your gross (before taxes) income year to date. If you were only paid for part of the year, you can calculate your average monthly income for the year by diving the total amount you have been paid by 12.

  2. Call or contact your employer's HR department or payroll manager and ask for the total gross income for the year. It is fine if you get this information over the phone - you will not need to provide documentation.

If your job doesn't provide you with pay statements, or if you get paid in cash, you still need to state your estimated annual and monthly income on your bankruptcy forms. You can estimate these amounts using your bank statements, app ledgers (for jobs like Lyft, Uber, or MTurk), or from memory.



About the author
Attorney Jonathan Petts

Jonathan Petts has over 10 years of experience in bankruptcy and is co-founder and Board Chair of Upsolve. Attorney Petts has an LLM in Bankruptcy from St. John's University, clerked for two federal bankruptcy judges, and worked at two top New York City law firms specializing in... read more

It's easy to get help

Choose one of the options below to get assistance with your bankruptcy:

Free Web App

Take our bankruptcy screener to see if you're a fit for Upsolve's free web app!

Take Screener
3730 families have filed with Upsolve! ☆
OR

Private Attorney

Get a free bankruptcy evaluation from an independent law firm.

Find Attorney
3353 people found attorneys this month

Questions about bankruptcy?

Research and understand your options with our articles and guides.

Go to Learning Center →
Already an Upsolve user?

Read Support Articles →

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.

Close

Considering Bankruptcy?

Try our 100% free tool that thousands of low-income families across the country have used to file bankruptcy themselves. We are funded by Harvard University, will never ask you for a credit card, and you can stop at any time.

File Bankruptcy for Free