Letter to “Ask Leon”
Hello, Thanks in advance for your time. My husband and I are going to be filing chapter 7 Bk pro se real soon. I know that we have to have copies of our tax returns but was wondering if the copies we received from Jackson Hewitt were sufficient or if we will have to get the actual transcripts from IRS? I really wanted to file everything at the same time. If we have to have the actual transcripts, can we get the ones that are free or do we have to get the ones you pay for? And do you have any idea how long it takes to receive those? I am trying to decide if I should wait to file until I have received them. Thanks so much.
After you file, mail a complete copy of your most recent state and Federal returns to the trustee, and you won’t need the transcripts. The court clerks hate having you file those with your original petition, as all that paper has to be scanned and stored. But, I’m curious… I don’t know who Jackson Hewitt is, I assume your tax accountant? But why don’t you do the taxes yourself?
I assume you go to them because you are not a tax expert. I also assume you are not an experienced bankruptcy lawyer. Don’t you have more to lose if the BK case is mishandled than you would stand to lose if you prepared your own taxes but made a mistake on your returns? Did you know that you can make certain common mistakes on your bankruptcy papers and have the whole bankruptcy denied? I see it happen a lot. It really does happen. Yet, you have your taxes done for you but you will do your own BK? Please go to a lawyer. Find a good one, it’s worth the money. Most people can ask a few good questions, (as you did), but fail to realize all of the other good questions that they should be asking. That’s why you go to a lawyer. A good lawyer digs into the case looking for things that could be a problem, before it bites you in the rump. Believe it or not, they earn their money by saving you far money more than it will cost you.
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