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Ellen, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 36714
Experience:  Bankruptcy Lawyer. Experienced.
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I am 1/2 way through a 60 month, 100% payback chapter 13 plan.

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I am 1/2 way through a 60 month, 100% payback chapter 13 plan. In my original filing I did not include my house. However, 1/2 way through I could no longer afford the house due to loss of job. I received a job opportunity in the next state over. So I moved (There was no way to even afford my house at this point). I can still afford my Chapter 13 payments though it is difficult at times. I filed in PA but now live in OH.

1. Does my chapter 13 need to be transferred to where I am if I want to now surrender my house? Or since I'm just going to keep making my chapter 13 payments, do I just notify the mortgage companies that I am surrendering my house and mail them the keys?
2. My original lawyer - who no longer can work with me due to his personal life - said I should transfer my case. However, there is not a single lawyer where I now live who says I can "transfer" my case. They said I would need to request the court to dismiss my current case. After it is dismissed I would need to file a new chapter 13 in my new jurisdiction - which could include surrendering my house if I need to do that through a lawyer.

With my original lawyer unable to assist me, and receiving conflicting information from lawyers where I now reside I feel so lost.
I want to surrender my house. What do I need to do? I owe much more on it than it's current value.

Thank you
*This chat is not intended as legal advice. It is general information that may or may not apply to your situation and should not be relied upon.*


My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will do whatever I can to answer your questions!

Typically the procedure would be to petition the court in which you originally filed the 13 for a modification to indicate the surrender of the property. The modified plan would treat any deficiency on the mortgage as additional unsecured debt so that the deficiency would be discharged at the successful completion of the 60 month plan. There would not be a transfer to a new court.

I would be glad to respond to any related follow-up questions that you may have.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Thank you for your answer, though it did not take into consideration my new location, or the fact that my original lawyer with whom I worked with is no longer able to "be my lawyer" for my case.
I would have to assume that to "petition the court", I would be able to do that myself via a letter. Is that correct?

I have to notify the court anyhow of my change of address.

Thank you

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Other.
The answer did not take into consideration points from my question: such as I no longer have legal representation and I live in a new jurisdiction.

Thank you for your follow-up question. I find that follow-up questions are essential for clarity given the format of our discussion

Bankruptcy cases are not typically transferred when jurisdiction was met at the time of filing. Therefore the fact that you have relocated would not be reason to transfer your bankruptcy

Once an attorney is the attorney of record in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, that attorney remains the attorney of record until or unless the court relieves him from responsibility. Therefore regardless of your prior attorneys personal problems, he is still your attorney of record and is obligated to modify your case unless he is removed as attorney of record by the court

If your attorney has been removed as attorney of record, I suggest that you retain new bankruptcy counsel to file your modification. Bankruptcy law is very complex and a modification should be handled by local counsel

I would be glad to respond to any related follow-up questions that you may have.

Ellen and 2 other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you