While most debtors need only attend a single 341 hearing, Middle District Courts are now requiring that Pro Se debtors attend a hearing appraising them of their rights in respect to reaffirmation agreements if they are to be enforceable.
A reaffirmation agreement is a proposal to re-enter into a contract once a bankruptcy has ended, often with the same terms as the original agreement. Most often it functions to allow people to keep a financed car through a bankruptcy.
When people file for bankruptcy and have an attorney, their attorney appraises them of their rights and obligations when it comes to a reaffirmation. However, there are rare occasions when people attempt to file bankruptcy on their own or with a petition preparer (a non-lawyer who helps fill out forms but cannot give advice). When this happens, the Court has now ruled in In re Pitts, that an official hearing must occur at which time the Court will inform the debtor of their rights and obligations under the reaffirmed agreement. If this hearing does not occur, then the reaffirmation agreement will be deemed unenforceable.
If you want to file a bankruptcy and wish to reaffirm a debt, contact a Jacksonville Bankruptcy Attorney or call us at (904) 685-1200 for a free consultation.