Bankruptcy Forms: Filing Bankruptcy Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Software Chapter 13

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TITLE 11–BANKRUPTCY

CHAPTER 1–GENERAL PROVISIONS

Sec. 110. Penalty for persons who negligently or
fraudulently prepare bankruptcy petitions

  (a) In this section--
        (1) ``bankruptcy petition preparer'' means a person, other than 
    an attorney or an employee of an attorney, who prepares for 
    compensation a document for filing; and
        (2) ``document for filing'' means a petition or any other 
    document prepared for filing by a debtor in a United States 
    bankruptcy court or a United States district court in connection 
    with a case under this title.

    (b)(1) A bankruptcy petition preparer who prepares a document for 
filing shall sign the document and print on the document the preparer's 
name and address.
    (2) A bankruptcy petition preparer who fails to comply with 
paragraph (1) may be fined not more than $500 for each such failure 
unless the failure is due to reasonable cause.
    (c)(1) A bankruptcy petition preparer who prepares a document for 
filing shall place on the document, after the preparer's signature, an 
identifying number that identifies individuals who prepared the 
document.
    (2) For purposes of this section, the identifying number of a 
bankruptcy petition preparer shall be the Social Security account number 
of each individual who prepared the document or assisted in its 
preparation.
    (3) A bankruptcy petition preparer who fails to comply with 
paragraph (1) may be fined not more than $500 for each such failure 
unless the failure is due to reasonable cause.
    (d)(1) A bankruptcy petition preparer shall, not later than the time 
at which a document for filing is presented for the debtor's signature, 
furnish to the debtor a copy of the document.
    (2) A bankruptcy petition preparer who fails to comply with 
paragraph (1) may be fined not more than $500 for each such failure 
unless the failure is due to reasonable cause.
    (e)(1) A bankruptcy petition preparer shall not execute any document 
on behalf of a debtor.
    (2) A bankruptcy petition preparer may be fined not more than $500 
for each document executed in violation of paragraph (1).
    (f)(1) A bankruptcy petition preparer shall not use the word 
``legal'' or any similar term in any advertisements, or advertise under 
any category that includes the word ``legal'' or any similar term.
    (2) A bankruptcy petition preparer shall be fined not more than $500 
for each violation of paragraph (1).
    (g)(1) A bankruptcy petition preparer shall not collect or receive 
any payment from the debtor or on behalf of the debtor for the court 
fees in connection with filing the petition.
    (2) A bankruptcy petition preparer shall be fined not more than $500 
for each violation of paragraph (1).
    (h)(1) Within 10 days after the date of the filing of a petition, a 
bankruptcy petition preparer shall file a declaration under penalty of 
perjury disclosing any fee received from or on behalf of the debtor 
within 12 months immediately prior to the filing of the case, and any 
unpaid fee charged to the debtor.
    (2) The court shall disallow and order the immediate turnover to the 
bankruptcy trustee of any fee referred to in paragraph (1) found to be 
in excess of the value of services rendered for the documents prepared. 
An individual debtor may exempt any funds so recovered under section 
522(b).
    (3) The debtor, the trustee, a creditor, or the United States 
trustee may file a motion for an order under paragraph (2).
    (4) A bankruptcy petition preparer shall be fined not more than $500 
for each failure to comply with a court order to turn over funds within 
30 days of service of such order.
    (i)(1) If a bankruptcy case or related proceeding is dismissed 
because of the failure to file bankruptcy papers, including papers 
specified in section 521(1) of this title, the negligence or intentional 
disregard of this title or the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure by 
a bankruptcy petition preparer, or if a bankruptcy petition preparer 
violates this section or commits any fraudulent, unfair, or deceptive 
act, the bankruptcy court shall certify that fact to the district court, 
and the district court, on motion of the debtor, the trustee, or a 
creditor and after a hearing, shall order the bankruptcy petition 
preparer to pay to the debtor--
        (A) the debtor's actual damages;
        (B) the greater of--
            (i) $2,000; or
            (ii) twice the amount paid by the debtor to the bankruptcy 
        petition preparer for the preparer's services; and

        (C) reasonable attorneys' fees and costs in moving for damages 
    under this subsection.

    (2) If the trustee or creditor moves for damages on behalf of the 
debtor under this subsection, the bankruptcy petition preparer shall be 
ordered to pay the movant the additional amount of $1,000 plus 
reasonable attorneys' fees and costs incurred.
    (j)(1) A debtor for whom a bankruptcy petition preparer has prepared 
a document for filing, the trustee, a creditor, or the United States 
trustee in the district in which the bankruptcy petition preparer 
resides, has conducted business, or the United States trustee in any 
other district in which the debtor resides may bring a civil action to 
enjoin a bankruptcy petition preparer from engaging in any conduct in 
violation of this section or from further acting as a bankruptcy 
petition preparer.
    (2)(A) In an action under paragraph (1), if the court finds that--
        (i) a bankruptcy petition preparer has--
            (I) engaged in conduct in violation of this section or of 
        any provision of this title a violation of which subjects a 
        person to criminal penalty;
            (II) misrepresented the preparer's experience or education 
        as a bankruptcy petition preparer; or
            (III) engaged in any other fraudulent, unfair, or deceptive 
        conduct; and

        (ii) injunctive relief is appropriate to prevent the recurrence 
    of such conduct,

the court may enjoin the bankruptcy petition preparer from engaging in 
such conduct.
    (B) If the court finds that a bankruptcy petition preparer has 
continually engaged in conduct described in subclause (I), (II), or 
(III) of clause (i) and that an injunction prohibiting such conduct 
would not be sufficient to prevent such person's interference with the 
proper administration of this title, or has not paid a penalty imposed 

under this section, the court may enjoin the person from acting as a 
bankruptcy petition preparer.
    (3) The court shall award to a debtor, trustee, or creditor that 
brings a successful action under this subsection reasonable attorney's 
\1\ fees and costs of the action, to be paid by the bankruptcy petition 
preparer.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\ So in original. Probably should be ``attorneys' ''.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    (k) Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit activities 
that are otherwise prohibited by law, including rules and laws that 
prohibit the unauthorized practice of law.

(Added Pub. L. 103-394, title III, Sec. 308(a), Oct. 22, 1994, 108 Stat. 
4135.)

                       References in Text

    The Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure, referred to in subsec. 
(i)(1), are set out in the Appendix to this title.


                             Effective Date

    Section effective Oct. 22, 1994, and not applicable with respect to 
cases commenced under this title before Oct. 22, 1994, see section 702 
of Pub. L. 103-394, set out as an Effective Date of 1994 Amendment note 
under section 101 of this title.

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Note: For affordable legal assistance The Center For Debt Management highly recommends Standard Legal's Do-It-Yourself Bankruptcy Forms Software Kits. For credit repair services,
the most trusted law firm in America with over 15 years of experience is Lexington Law Firm.

For more bankruptcy help and bankruptcy alternatives, go to Bankruptcy Resources

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Legal Resource Center: United States Code TITLE 11 Filing Bankruptcy Forms Software