In Bankruptcy Information, Filing pro se

Official Form B107 is commonly called the Statement of Financial Affairs, or SOFA. It provides a recent history of the debtor’s financial situation. Whereas the schedules, A-J, are a snapshot of the debtor’s current (as of the date of filing) situation, SOFA provides a background.

Most of the questions on SOFA are self explanatory. Questions 4 and 5 involve income for the current year to date of filing and the preceding two calendar years. Question 4 addresses income from employment or operation of a business. This would be W-2 income or self-employment income. Question 5 addresses income from any other sources. This includes governmental assistance, such as unemployment compensation, food stamps, Social Security or other payments, family gifts used to pay bills and the like.

Question 6 requires the debtor to disclose payments made on consumer debts of more than $600 total to any one creditor in the last 90 days. The reason for this is to tell the Trustee whether he might have an avoidance action against the recipient of the payments. An avoidance action means the Trustee can get the total of all payments made in the 90 days prior to filing back from the individual creditors and use that to make a distribution to all creditors.

Question 7 is similar to Question 6, except in the case of insiders (family members, close friends, business associates, businesses owned by the debtor, etc.) the trustee can avoid transfers made within one year of filing.

Question 8 is identical to Question 7 except it addresses payments made to third parties for the benefit of insiders.

Question 11 asks about setoffs. A setoff is where two parties have debts to each other and one of the parties offsets the debt owed to it by the other against the debt owed by it to the other. For example, suppose you have a car loan at a bank and you also have an account there. If you don’t make the car payment the bank can go to your account and take money from it to pay the car loan. This is a setoff.

Question 12 asks about assignments for the benefit of creditors. If you don’t know what that means, you didn’t do it. An assignment for the benefit of creditors is a voluntary state court proceeding where a debtor turns over all his or her property to a person for the benefit of the creditors. In 35 years of doing bankruptcy, I have never seen anyone answer “yes” to this question.

All the rest of the SOFA questions should be self-explanatory. If you find you need help with completing the SOFA or any other of the bankruptcy forms, please contact us.

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