Watch Out for Social Media Accounts in Bankruptcy

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When someone files for bankruptcy there is a trustee assigned to the case.  The trustee is essentially an independent contractor for the United States Trustee, which is the arm of the government that oversees all bankruptcies in the United States. You will have a meeting with the trustee about thirty (30) days after the case is filed.  The trustee will ask you several questions and then, based on the information, might refer your case to the United States Trustee’s office.

The United States Trustee’s office monitors all bankruptcy cases to determine if a Chapter 7 case, for example, should actually be a Chapter 13 (repayment plan), or whether a Chapter 13 plan is paying enough to creditors, or if there is some kind of fraud going on, such as not listing all your income or assets.

Social Media Accounts in Bankruptcy: Expect Your Social Media Accounts to be Monitored

Given the tendency for many people to be on social media (e.g. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, etc.) it is not very hard to find out information online about someone who has filed for bankruptcy.

As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, so if you post pictures or videos online you should expect that a trustee might find those.  If, for example, you posted pictures of your recent vacation to Cancun, you can get the trustee will see that and might question you filing for bankruptcy right after you were just living in up in Mexico. It’s a bad look.

Or perhaps you posted something on Craigslist or other Facebook Marketplace for selling something and then failed to disclose the stuff sold in your bankruptcy paperwork. That’s a bad look too.

In general, just keep in mind that the obligation in bankruptcy is to disclose everything that you’re required to disclose. Your expectation should be that if you’ve posted something online then that information will be seen by your bankruptcy trustee. When in doubt, over-disclose everything to your bankruptcy attorney.

Contact W M Law

If you’re not sure about something on your social media account and you plan to file bankruptcy, give one of our experienced attorneys a call to help walk you through everything.  You can contact us at 913-422-0909. Or go to our website: WM Law is here to help.

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Jeffrey L. Wagoner


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