Standing Chapter 13 Trustee

Middle District of Pennsylvania


This page provides basic background information regarding Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code. It should not be interpreted as providing professional advice for your particular circumstance. Such advice should be sought from a professional, such as an attorney, who will become familiar with your particular situation and objectives.

What is Chapter 13?

Chapter 13 is the part of the bankruptcy law that encompasses ยงยง1301 - 1329 of the Bankruptcy Code.

What is the purpose of Chapter 13?

Chapter 13 allows debtors to pay creditors with regular income and/or assets as opposed to through liquidation of assets only (as in Chaper 7). Chapter 13 also allows debtors to cure arrears owed to creditors through a plan that can last up to 60 months and in some circumstances even longer.

What does a Chapter 13 Trustee do?

The Chapter 13 Trustee evaluates the case and serves as a disbursing agent by collecting payments from the debtor and making distributions to their creditors.

What is involved in filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy?

Debtors are required to file all of the documents required under the Bankruptcy Code and the corresponding Rules. One of the most important documents in a Chapter 13 filing is the Chapter 13 Plan. The plan designates how the debtor will fund the plan and how that funding will be distributed to the creditors.

When is my first payment due under the plan?

Your first plan payment is generally due within 30 days of filing your case. You are also generally expected to make a plan payment each month. Consult your attorney for more specific details regarding your partiular case.

When are my monthly plan payments due?

Generally, plan payments are due at the beginning of the month and delinquent after the last day of the month.

Where do I send my monthly plan payments?

The address to mail your monthly payments is located on the homepage within the left information panel. Information regarding electronic payments (TFS) is also available at that location.

Where do I send my most recently filed tax return?

If you have an attorney, send the tax return to him or her. If you do not have an attorney, email the tax return to taxreturn@pamd13trustee.com

What happens if I fall behind in my plan payments?

The Trustee or any other interested party can file a motion to dismiss your case if you fall behind more than a month. You have several options to cure the arrearage so you should discuss these options with your attorney. Do not hide from your attorney or avoid his or her attempts to contact you. They are there to help you, not yell at you.

What should I do if I have a hearing regarding the dismissal of my case and I have not made the necessary payment?

Since we receive payments through a post office box, payments cannot be delivered by any method other than the US Postal Service. Overnight and certified mail should be avoided since they require special handling and therefore may slow the processing of the payment. If you are in this situation, contact your attorney immediately so appropriate arrangements can be made to avoid the dismissal of you case.

How much do I owe and how much longer do I need to pay into my plan?

You should keep a copy of your Chapter 13 plan to answer this question. You are also able to monitor your plan payments and disbursements to creditors through the National Data Center and trustee13.com. Links to both of these services are located on the right information panel of this page.

What happens if I need to buy a replacement vehicle or want to buy a residence while I am in bankruptcy?

The best option is to consult your attorney. While such purchases are not forbidden, they must be conducted in an appropriate manner. Your attorney knows your situation and can assist you in getting the necessary approvals.

Important Sources of Information

Electronic Plan Payments

Case Information

Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure

General Information

Lawyer Referral Services