Amended Official Bankruptcy Form 7, Statement of Financial Affairs

Wednesday, January 3, 2001

The Judicial Conference, at its September 2000 session, approved amendments to Official Bankruptcy Form 7, the Statement of Financial Affairs. This form must be completed by the debtor in every bankruptcy case.

The form has been amended to provide additional information requested by taxing authorities, pension fund supervisors, and governmental units charged with environmental protection and regulation. Four new questions have been added to the form.

The new questions concern:

     • community property owned by a debtor and the debtor’s non-filing spouse or former spouse (Question 16),
     • environmental information (Question 17),
     • any consolidated tax group of a corporate debtor (Question 24), and
     • the debtor’s contributions to any employee pension fund (Question 25).

In addition, every corporate or partnership debtor and every individual or joint debtor who has been in business within six years before filing the petition must answer Questions 19-25.

This is an enlargement of the two-year period previously specified. The instructions ontained in the form also have been amended to make it clear that individual or joint debtors who have not been in business, as defined in the form, within the six years prior to filing should not answer Questions 19 through 25 but proceed directly to the signature page of the form.

The amended form is also available from the Internet at www.uscourts.gov/bankform/ . Alternatively, from www.uscourts.gov click on “For Public Review,” scroll down and click on “Federal Rulemaking,” then click on “Official Bankruptcy Forms.”

The amended form is effective now but bankruptcy forms publishers and software vendors will require a reasonable time to produce and distribute the new version. Until the new form becomes widely available, bankruptcy case trustees and creditors who need the additional information required by the form must request the debtor to furnish it separately, either at the meeting of creditors or by other means.