The answer for where to file bankruptcy is governed by the rules for venue. Generally, venue refers to a place or location in which something takes place. In regard to where to file bankruptcy, venue refers to the place where the bankruptcy petition should be filed. Venue is governed by federal bankruptcy law 28 USC 1408. Venue in bankruptcy cases is a pretty straightforward concept; however, completing the petitions and navigating a case through the court system can be very difficult and tedious. If you are contemplating filing for bankruptcy you should seek the aid of a Tampa bankruptcy attorney before taking any legal action. A bankruptcy lawyer in Tampa can help draft the necessary bankruptcy forms, navigate your petition through the court system, advocate on your behalf against creditors, and help you get the most relief possible from bankruptcy.
Where to File Bankruptcy: District Where you Reside
The first place to start in where to file bankruptcy should be the county in which you live. The proper venue for filing a bankruptcy petition will be the district where 180 days immediately preceding the filing of petition the debtor has:
- domicile; or
- residence; or
- principle place of business; or
- principle place where the assets are located
If the debtor moved within the 180 days preceding the bankruptcy filing, venue will be where the debtor was located for the greatest amount of time within the 180 days.
Where to File Bankruptcy if Filing for a Business
Once again, the first place to start for where to file bankruptcy will be the location of the business. A corporation’s domicile will be the district where the business is incorporated. A domicile will not change unless a new one is acquired. See In Re Frame. On the other hand, the principal place of business will depend on the facts and circumstances of each case. For instance, many companies conduct business in multiple states and have locations throughout the country. In these types of situations, the principal place of business is the “nerve center “ of the business. See In Re Peachtree Lane Associates.
The “nerve center” will be the place where the corporation’s major business decisions were made within the 180 days immediately preceding the bankruptcy filing. The principal assets of a business are the assets primarily used in the operation of the business. The assets must be related to the business, investments may not be sufficient. See In Re Newport Creamery
In cases involving business partnerships, where to file bankruptcy will be based on either the principal place of business or location of the principal assets. Residence or domicile are not a proper basis for venue in bankruptcy cases filed by partnerships. See In re Willow Ltd. Partnership.
Bankruptcy Law Firm in Tampa
At Florida Law Advisers, P.A., we understand that filing for bankruptcy can be a very confusing and intimidating process. That is why we work so hard to make the process as easy as possible for our clients. When you hire Florida Law Advisers, P.A., you have an experienced bankruptcy attorney by your side throughout every phase of the bankruptcy process. We will help ensure your rights are protected, keep you well-informed, and help you receive the utmost relief bankruptcy can offer. To schedule a free consultation with a Tampa bankruptcy lawyer at our firm call, email, or fill out an online inquiry on our website today.