You might be surprised to learn that attorneys are using social media to gather evidence for lawsuits. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and numerous other websites provide a wealth of information about people. It is important to remember that what you post on social forums can be used against you by creditors and/or the trustee in your bankruptcy case. Consider the following:
- When you file a personal bankruptcy, you must make full financial disclosures. This means you must list all of your assets, debts, income and expenses. Thus, if you post a picture of a new motorcycle you just bought and it is not listed in your bankruptcy filings, it can raise issues in your case.
- When you disclosed your income, did you remember to include your side-job selling crafts on Etsy? Failure to disclose a source of income can negatively affect your bankruptcy case.
- A Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 debtor must follow strict guidelines regarding their budget while their case is pending. In other words, you cannot make unnecessary or frivolous purchases while not paying all of your creditors in full. Any posts you make regarding vacations, expensive purchases or other questionable expenditures can cause trouble for you.
Bankruptcy trustees typically do not actively search social media websites trying to catch you in a lie, but a disgruntled creditor might. Thus, the wisest thing you can do to ensure your bankruptcy filing is a success, is to be honest and make full financial disclosure in your pleadings. Additionally, you should think before posting and refrain from putting anything out there that you would not want the trustee or your creditors to see!
If you are considering filing for bankruptcy protection, contact the skilled attorneys at Faro & Crowder to schedule a free consultation. We are located in Melbourne and proudly serve all of Central Florida.