KLESNER, BURBIDGE &
ATTORNEYS AT LAW
1927 Keokuk Street
Iowa City, Iowa 52244-3400
Joseph C. Johnston | Connie Peschang Stannard | Steven G. Klesner
David Burbidge | Shawn M. Fitzgerald
Common Bankruptcy Questions1
A decision to file for bankruptcy should be made only after determining that bankruptcy
is the best way to deal with your financial problems. This brochure cannot explain every
aspect of the bankruptcy process. If you still have questions after reading it, you should
speak with an attorney familiar with bankruptcy or a paralegal working for an attorney.
What Is Bankruptcy?
Bankruptcy is a legal proceeding in which a person who cannot pay his or her bills can
get a fresh financial start. The right to file for bankruptcy is provided by federal law, and all
bankruptcy cases are handled in federal court. Filing bankruptcy immediately stops all of
your creditors from seeking to collect debts from you, at least until your debts are sorted out
according to the law.
What Can Bankruptcy Do for Me?
Bankruptcy may make it possible for you to:
* Eliminate the legal obligation to pay most or all of your debts. This is called a
"discharge" of debts. It is designed to give you a fresh financial start.
1 This brochure, provided by Johnston, Stannard, Klesner, Burbidge & Fitzgerald, P.L.C., 1927 Keokuk Street, PO Box 3400,
Iowa City, IA, 52244, phone (319)354-1712, is adapted from materials published by the National Consumer Law Center,
which are adapted from a pamphlet prepared by Legal Services, Inc., under a grant from the Pennsylvania Law Coordination
Center, and from National Consumer Law Center, Surviving Debt (2002). Those seeking more detailed and technical
information should consult