You Can File Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy in Any "Proper Venue" Even if You Live Overseas
A bankruptcy can be filed in any of the Federal judicial districts in the United States which is deemed to be the proper "venue" for the case under Federal law, and, under Federal law, that venue, or location for filing, is any Federal jurisdiction "... in which the domicile, residence, principal place of business in the United States, or principal assets in the United States, of the person or entity that is the subject of the case have been located for the one hundred eighty days immediately preceding such commencement, or for a longer portion of such one-hundred-and-eighty-day period than in any other district." In other words, so long as you have either lived in or kept a permanent residence ("domicile") in that Federal judicial district for the majority of the six months prior to the filing of the case, or so long as your principle place of business is in that district if you are a corporation or business or other entity filing for bankruptcy, you may file your bankruptcy in that district. Therefore, if a resident of Detroit, Michigan, which is located in the Eastern District of Michigan Federal judicial district, were to join the military and be assigned a station overseas or were to take a job overseas, he or she could still file for bankruptcy in the Eastern District of Michigan so long as his or her permanent address and/or assets remained principally in the Eastern District of Michigan.
Can I File Bankruptcy if I Reside Overseas? You May Still Need to Appear
A person filing for bankruptcy outside of the United States may encounter some practical difficulties filing from abroad, such as the need to appear personally for at least one hearing, the 341 Meeting of Creditors. However, an experienced bankruptcy attorney can assist in overcoming such practical hurdles and work with the Trustee assigned to an overseas client's case to obtain court approval to conduct hearings telephonically, via Skype, via a personal representative with power of attorney and knowledge of the client's financial affairs, etc. If you are a Michigan resident and would like to explore your options for a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy with an experienced Michigan bankruptcy attorney, please contact us at (866) 674-2317 or click the button below to schedule a free, initial consultation.
If you enjoyed reading "Can I File Bankruptcy if I Reside Overseas?," please browse our other articles on our main Michigan Bankruptcy Blog.