How to check a bankruptcy status online

courthouse image by Michael Shake from

After filing for bankruptcy, petitioners want to keep track of the status of the filing. This is often done by contacting the bankruptcy attorney or the court appointed trustee managing the case. This can be time consuming since attorneys and trustees have many cases to manage. Checking the status of a bankruptcy case online is one way to get bankruptcy information quickly.

Visit the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) website to register for a login ID. The PACER system provides access to the records of bankruptcy courts throughout the United States to anyone who has a valid login and password. To register for a new login a user will need to enter his name, date of birth, home address, telephone number and the name of the user's nearest living relative.

Authenticate the registration using a valid credit card. A credit card will be needed to complete registration and to be assigned a password. The password will be sent to the email provided during the PACER registration or mailed to individuals who do not provide an e-mail address. As of May 2010, PACER does not charge a registration fee for requesting a login ID. The site, however, charges a fee of 8 cents a page for viewing but limits the fee to the fee for 30 pages. However, transcripts of federal court proceedings are not subject to the 30-page fee limit. Attorneys and parties in a case receive one free electronic copy of all electronically filed documents.

The PACER site specifies a 10 cents per page fee for printing copies of any record or document accessed electronically.

Login to the PACER website and search the list of U.S. bankruptcy courts to find the court in which your bankruptcy case was filed. The lists are separated by states to help people locate the correct court. Alternatively, the websites for most federal district bankruptcy courts have a direct link to the PACER system that allows users with a PACER login to sign directly into the district court's PACER database.

Search for your bankruptcy case using your name, Social Security number and date of birth. Once your case has been located all information associated with the bankruptcy case will be available for review. This information includes the petitioner's name, the name of the attorney (if one is available), the name and contact information for the trustee managing the case, and the current status of the petition.

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