New Academy to Educate Public on
Benefits of Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
As bankruptcy filings rise, National Association of Chapter Thirteen Trustees launches new organization to raise awareness of Chapter 13 and provide resources for legal professionals, financial advisors and consumers
COLUMBIA, S.C. – The National Association of Chapter Thirteen Trustees (NACTT) today announced the launch of the NACTT Academy for Consumer Bankruptcy Education, Inc., a 501c3 created to provide resources and information on the benefits of Chapter 13. The organization’s website – ConsiderChapter13.org – is scheduled to go live Tuesday, July 1.
The Academy is an outgrowth of NACTT, a member organization founded in 1965 for legal and financial professionals involved in Chapter 13 bankruptcy. NACTT established the Academy to increase awareness among lawyers, debtors and creditors, accountants, credit counselors, debt collection agencies, and the public about Chapter 13 and how it differs from Chapter 7, the better known of the personal bankruptcy options. The Academy will play an integral role in providing educational content and materials for the NACTT 43rd Annual Conference, the nation’s premier meeting on Chapter 13 issues from July 9-12 in San Francisco.
“Bankruptcy is unfortunately a very timely topic in America right now, as more people struggle with serious financial pressures and face the real possibility of losing their homes and savings,” said Henry Hildebrand, bankruptcy expert and member of the Academy board of directors. “Through Chapter 13, people can save their homes, their cars and their major investments by setting up reasonable repayment plans. The Academy feels an obligation to let people know that Chapter 13 is out there. There is an alternative to losing it all.”
Under Chapter 13, debtors have the opportunity to enter into repayment plans which allow them to maintain control over and save their major assets, including homes, cars and retirement savings. In contrast, in Chapter 7, debtors lose control of such decisions and a Chapter 7 Trustee is appointed to, among other duties, liquidate the debtors’ non-exempt assets.
The Academy’s website, ConsiderChapter13.org, will provide critical information about Chapter 13, including bankruptcy forms, model repayment plans, statistics, and filing information. ConsiderChapter13.org also will offer links to additional helpful websites including those of individual Chapter 13 trustees, U.S. Bankruptcy Courts, the National Association of Chapter Thirteen Trustees, the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, the American Bankruptcy Institute, the American Board of Certification, the American College of Bankruptcy, the Internal Revenue Service, as well as selected articles and blogs.
The website also will include a premium, members-only area containing audio and video webcasts, webinars, forums and user response/commentary, as well as articles on current cases, bankruptcy ethics, the mortgage crisis, trustee, debtor, creditor and court perspectives on current issues, pending litigation, and other areas of interest. Memberships will be available for purchase on July 1, 2008.
“Bankruptcy can be a very tricky landscape to navigate,” Hildebrand said. “We’ve seen a 30% increase in bankruptcy filings this past year, and there’s no telling how many of those filers incurred unnecessary losses. The Academy’s goal is to educate and provide resources to the interested public, but specifically to individuals who are contemplating filing bankruptcy and bankruptcy professionals, in order to encourage careful consideration of Chapter 13 as an appropriate choice in addressing financial problems.”
About The National Association of Chapter Thirteen Trustees Academy for Consumer Bankruptcy Education, Inc. – The Academy, a 501c3 organization, is an outgrowth of The National Association of Chapter Thirteen Trustees, which was founded in 1965 and is represented by more than 1,000 members serving in all 50 states in the U.S. and in Puerto Rico. The Academy seeks to educate the general public as well as legal and financial professionals about the benefits of Chapter 13 in order to maximize the effectiveness of filings. The Academy’s website serves as a resource for anyone involved in consumer bankruptcy issues, specifically Chapter 13.
(Originally published: 1/6/2009)