Filing Claims

Proofs of Claim

A proof of claim is the written statement filed in a bankruptcy case, setting forth a
creditor's claim to money owed by the debtor. The proof of claim should include a copy
of the document showing the basis of the claim, as well as evidence of the secured
status of the debt (if the debt is secured).

Only the original claim needs to be filed. If you wish to have a conformed copy returned
to you, please enclose an extra copy and a self-addressed stamped envelope.
Requests for information regarding when a claim will be paid should be directed to the
trustee assigned to the case whose name and telephone number can be found on the
notice of the case.

Generally, claims in Chapter 12 and 13 cases must be filed within ninety (90) days after
the first date set for the meeting of creditors. Claims of governmental units must be filed
within one hundred eighty (180) days of the date the petition was filed.
Proofs of Claim - Chapter 7

Chapter 7 is referred to as the "liquidation" chapter. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, a
case trustee is assigned and becomes responsible for gathering and selling the debtor's
nonexempt property. The case trustee then uses the proceeds from the sale of these
assets to pay holders of claims (creditors) in accordance with the provisions of the
Bankruptcy Code.

In the Northern District of Iowa, all chapter 7 cases are opened as “no asset” cases. The
bankruptcy trustee, will determine if there are assets to be distributed. If so, the Clerk of
Court will give creditors notice of a deadline to file claims for debts owed to them by the
debtors. Creditors should not file a claim unless a claims deadline is set. Creditors will
have 90 days after the Clerk’s notice within which to file their claim with the bankruptcy
court.

Proofs of Claim - Chapter 13

Chapter 13 is also known as the "wage earners plan." In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy
case, the debtor has regular income and is permitted to develop a plan to repay all or
part of his/her debts. Depending upon the circumstances of the case, the repayment
plan may call for installment payments to creditors over three to five years. During this
time the law forbids creditors from starting or continuing collection efforts on debts that
existed before the petition was filed.

Creditors listed on the matrix will receive notice of the bankruptcy filing. A claims
deadline is always set in a chapter 13 case. Creditors will have 90 days to file their
claims with the bankruptcy court.