Sitting down with a bankruptcy attorney means going over a lot of details about your finances. The first order of business is establishing whether you might qualify for any kind of bankruptcy, and then you'll also need to determine what sort of filing you might pursue if you do qualify. To accomplish those goals, you'll need to bring a few items with you to your first meeting with a bankruptcy lawyer.

All Bills from Your Creditors

If at all possible, try to get as close to a number as you can for what the current balance on every debt you owe is. Billing information should also include the names of your creditors. This will be necessary for your bankruptcy attorney to begin drawing up paperwork. You want to be absolutely sure you get the names of every single creditor because anyone who goes unnamed in your filing may have grounds to pursue debts afterward.

Should you not have current numbers, or contact information for them, take the time to call them and get this information. If they try to get you to enter into some type of agreement, don't do it. Simply get the necessary information without telling them your purpose.

Every Utility Bill You're Currently Paying

The big thing here is to have the last few months of bills to demonstrate what your current outlays for utilities are. These sorts of living expenses will be used to demonstrate to the court what your present cost of getting by should be.

A List of Your Assets

Assets are the biggest targets in bankruptcies that lead to full liquidation to satisfy creditors. Regardless of whether you're seeking a repayment plan or total liquidation of assets, you need an accounting of the properties, vehicles, and other valuable items you own. This should include things like bank and brokerage accounts.

Some Evidence of Your Current Income and Wealth

One of the first things a bankruptcy judge will want to know is whether you can afford to pay. If you're pursuing something like Chapter 7 bankruptcy, where most assets may be sold off and debts canceled, they'll want to know that you cannot settle your debts---no matter how hard you try. If you're pursuing a restructured payment plan, they'll still want evidence that you will have enough income to pay down your debts according to the new schedule. This applies to both now and the next three to five years. Check with a professional like Greg Dunn Bankruptcy Attorney for more ideas.