CS Pro Tip: Understanding Bankruptcy Reports

CS Pro Tip: Understanding Bankruptcy Reports

Understanding Bankruptcy Reports for Libraries

For libraries that use Gentle Nudge from Unique, a situation that may arise is patrons filing for bankruptcy. While not an everyday occurrence, it requires a plan in place. Luckily, we have some tips for handling this. Bankruptcy filings by patrons can impact library operations and necessitate clear procedures for handling such cases. Check out this article for guidance in understanding and managing bankruptcy reports efficiently.

Unique Management Services Monthly Bankruptcy Report

Bankruptcy Report Structure

A list of any active patron accounts at Unique Management (UMS) is listed on the bankruptcy report. The report is a three-page report, with each page serving a distinct purpose:

Page 1: Bankruptcy Report

This page lists all library patrons who have notified the library of their bankruptcy filing. It includes individuals who have initiated bankruptcy proceedings and have not had a judgment made by the court.

Page 2: New To Bankruptcy

On this page, library staff will find a list of patrons who are new to the bankruptcy report for the current month. It helps in tracking recent bankruptcy filings.

Page 3: Dismissed or Discharged Bankruptcy

The third page details patrons whose bankruptcy judgments have either been dismissed (Denied) or discharged (Granted). It’s essential for tracking changes in the bankruptcy status of patrons.

  • You can access your monthly bankruptcy report in the InfoLink portal.

Managing Bankruptcy Notifications

Understanding Bankruptcy Notices for Libraries

The library will be notified when a patron has filed for bankruptcy, and they will be updated as the case progresses through the court process. These notices come in various types, each signaling a distinct stage or outcome of bankruptcy proceedings. Here’s a brief overview of the three primary types of bankruptcy notices libraries may encounter:

1.Bankruptcy Filing (Meeting of Creditors)

    • This notice indicates that the patron has initiated the bankruptcy process by filing the necessary paperwork.
    • At this stage, the patron is in the process of declaring bankruptcy, and no final decisions have been made regarding the discharge of debts.
    • Libraries should take note of the filing on the patron’s account and include any juvenile accounts with the same last name and address.

2. Bankruptcy Discharge

    • A discharge notice signifies that the bankruptcy petition has been granted and the patron’s debts have been legally eliminated.
    • Library patrons receiving a discharge are no longer responsible for the discharged debts, including any library fines or fees.
    • Libraries must update the patron’s account to reflect the discharge and forgive any outstanding fines or fees associated with the discharged debts.

3. Bankruptcy Dismissed

    • A dismissal notice indicates that the bankruptcy petition has been denied or dismissed by the court.
    • This outcome means that the patron’s bankruptcy request was not approved, and they remain responsible for their debts.
    • Libraries should resume normal efforts on the patron’s account, as the bankruptcy filing has not been granted.

Library Actions Upon Receiving Bankruptcy Filings

When the library receives notification of a patron’s bankruptcy filing, it must adhere to specific procedures outlined below:

  1. Document the Filing
    • The library must note the patron’s account and any associated juvenile accounts, recording the bankruptcy filing information.
  2. Notify UMS
    • Inform Unique Management about the bankruptcy filing promptly. Email or fax the following details to:
      • Email: data@unique-mgmt.com
      • Fax: (812) 285-0895
      • Required Information: Patron’s name, account number, and type of bankruptcy notice.

Library Actions for Discharged Bankruptcy

Upon receiving notification of a discharged bankruptcy, the library must:

  1. Update Account Information
    • Note the discharge status on the patron’s account, along with the discharge date. Include any related juvenile accounts.
  2. Forgive Fines and Fees
    • As per legal requirements, the library must forgive all fines and fees associated with the patron’s account.

Library Actions for Dismissed Bankruptcy

When informed of a dismissed bankruptcy, the library should:

  1. Update Account Information
    • Note the dismissal on the patron’s account, including the dismissal date. This applies to associated juvenile accounts as well.
  2. Proceed with Normal Operations
    • The library requires no further action since the bankruptcy was not granted.

Legal Considerations and Recommendations

Unique Management Services does not offer legal advice and recommends you check with the City/County attorney because laws may vary by state, city, and county.  You can find more information about bankruptcies at uscourts.gov.