bankruptcy court news

Central District of California, Northern Division Bankruptcy Filings Fall 34% from January 2012

A quick review of the PACER data indicates that total bankruptcy filings (all types) in the Northern Division of the Central District of California are down 34% from one year ago.  The figure for January 2013 was only 287 cases.  In January 2012, 434 cases were filed.  In January 2011, that number was 520 cases.

The average number of cases filed per month in 2012 was 414.  287 cases filed is low by any measurement.

The chart below shows the number of cases filed in the Northern Division per month since January 2011.


United States Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California Call Center

Did you know that the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California has a call center?

The court has established a Call Center that can be reached at the toll free telephone number (855) 460-9641.  The Call Center handles calls from the public for the Court’s Los Angeles, Riverside, Santa Ana, Northern, and San Fernando divisions.  The Call Center provides automated access to commonly requested information such as how to obtain free or low cost legal assistance, Court locations, attorney information, credit reporting and fraud, fee and check acceptance policy.  The automated service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Call Center operators are available from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays and other published Court closures.

United States Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California on Twitter

By Andrew Mansfield

From the United States Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California, Court News.

The Court has been posting to its Twitter account for a year now, and has sent over 430 “tweets” to about 350 followers.  The Court posts announcements, Notices of Sale, Public Notices, computer status updates, and other timely information. Many are not aware that they can view the Court’s Twitter postings without the need to get a Twitter account or even register. Just click on the Twitter logo on the home page of the Court’s website (  The postings are arranged in chronological order, making it easy to quickly catch up with what is going on at the Court.  For those with a Twitter account, you can use this free service to follow us @cacbnews.

Mansfield Law Office
56 E. Main St., Suite 110
Ventura, CA 93001

January and February Statistics for Central District of California Northern Division Bankruptcy Filings

I always find it interesting to follow the Court's prior year filing statistics.  In January 2012, Chapter 7 filings fell 18.3% compared to January 2011.  In February of 2012, however, Chapter 7 filings fell a more modest 4.3% from February of 2011.

Chapter 13 filings show a much different trend.  In January 2012, Chapter 13 filings increased 5.6% as compared to January 2011.  February saw a large jump in filings. Filings increased 19.5%.

The grand total for Northern Division bankruptcy filings in January 2012 was 419.  The total for February 2012 was 474 filings.

Statistics are available here.

Debtors Representing Themselves May Soon Be Able to Electronically File

The Central District of California Court News recently announced that debtors appearing pro se (representing themselves) may be able to file over the Internet through a web-based interface.  Currently, attorneys who file more than a few cases are required to electronically file.  This would be an interesting development.  Electronically filing takes a great deal of care and an understanding of the Petition and its matching electronic entry forms.  Here is a portion of the article.
Electronic Filing for Self-Represented Debtors on the Horizon.
The Subcommittee of the Judicial Conference’s Committee on Court Administration and Case
Management has accepted a proposal by the Bankruptcy Court Administration Division for a pilot program allowing debtors representing themselves to fi le their cases electronically. Although the project is in search of a better name, for now it is called the “Pro Se Pathfi nder.” The Pro Se Pathfi nder will be a web-based application accessible via any public terminal within the Court or by any external web-enabled computer. While representation by an attorney is still preferable, this program will allow debtors to fi le accurate and complete documents more easily, and provide the Court better access to information on those documents. The Central District of California, where over 38,000 debtors choose to represent themselves each year, will join the Districts of New Jersey and New Mexico in implementing an electronic fi ling pilot program for self-represented debtors when it becomes available early next year. In order to adequately test this pilot before any national rollout, the Court is dedicating signifi cant resources to fully studying and addressing the needs of our self-represented litigants as we implement this new program. A committee is developing systems and rules to enable the program to be implemented smoothly, and teams will be setting up meetings with various bar associations around the district over the next four months to gather ideas and concerns related to our large self represented population.
Note that the Court indicates representation by a bankruptcy is still preferable.  Bankruptcy is a major life decision with long-lasting impacts.  I would recommend that one take the path of making sure an attorney guides one through the process.

For help with bankruptcy in Ventura, Oxnard and our surrounding communities, please contact Mansfield Law Office.

The Central District of California Bankrutpcy Court Welcomes Two New Judges


From the Central District Court News
Judge Brand fills the position left vacant by Judge Geraldine Mund, who retired in February
and continues to sit as a recalled judge. Judge Brand will take over Judge Robles’ chapter 13
calendar starting November 7. Judge Bason fills the last temporary judgeship authorized for the
Central District, and will take over Judge Donovan’s chapter 13 calendar starting November 7.
Both judges will maintain chambers in Los Angeles.
Mansfield Law Office welcomes our new judges.

Judge Peter H. Carroll Assigned Some Northern Division Bankruptcy Cases

Much of my practice is in the Northern Division of the Central District of California.  The Bankruptcy Court is in Santa Barbara.  On August 2, 2011 a portion of new chapter 7 bankruptcy cases f led at the Northern Division are assigned to Judge Peter H. Carroll. No current active Northern Division cases will be affected. Judge Carroll will also continue to receive new cases filed at the Los Angeles Division.  Judge Carroll joins Judge Robin Riblet in the Division.