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SEC. 204. PRESERVATION OF CLAIMS AND DEFENSES UPON SALE OF PREDATORY LOANS.

    Section 363 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) by redesignating subsection (o) as subsection (p), and

      (2) by inserting after subsection (n) the following:
    "(o) Notwithstanding subsection (f), if a person purchases any interest in a consumer credit transaction that is subject to the Truth in Lending Act or any interest in a consumer credit contract (as defined in section 433.1 of title 16 of the Code of Federal Regulations (January 1, 2004), as amended from time to time), and if such interest is purchased through a sale under this section, then such person shall remain subject to all claims and defenses that are related to such consumer credit transaction or such consumer credit contract, to the same extent as such person would be subject to such claims and defenses of the consumer had such interest been purchased at a sale not under this section.".

 

 

 

 


SEC. 205. GAO STUDY AND REPORT ON REAFFIRMATION AGREEMENT PROCESS.

    (a) STUDY.—The Comptroller General of the United States shall conduct a study of the reaffirmation agreement process that occurs under title 11 of the United States Code, to determine the overall treatment of consumers within the context of such process, and shall include in such study consideration of—

      (1) the policies and activities of creditors with respect to reaffirmation agreements; and

      (2) whether consumers are fully, fairly, and consistently informed of their rights pursuant to such title.

    (b)  REPORT TO THE CONGRESS.—Not later than 18 months after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General shall submit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives a report on the results of the study conducted under subsection (a), together with recommendations for legislation (if any) to address any abusive or coercive tactics found in connection with the reaffirmation agreement process that occurs under title 11 of the United States Code.

 

 

 

 


Subtitle B — Priority Child Support

SEC. 211. DEFINITION OF DOMESTIC SUPPORT OBLIGATION.

    Section 101 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) by striking paragraph (12A); and

      (2) by inserting after paragraph (14) the following:
      "(14A) 'domestic support obligation' means a debt that accrues before, on, or after the date of the order for relief in a case under this title, including interest that accrues on that debt as provided under applicable nonbankruptcy law notwithstanding any other provision of this title, that is—
        "(A) owed to or recoverable by—
          "(i) a spouse, former spouse, or child of the debtor or such child's parent, legal guardian, or responsible relative; or
          "(ii) a governmental unit;
        "(B) in the nature of alimony, maintenance, or support (including assistance provided by a governmental unit) of such spouse, former spouse, or child of the debtor or such child's parent, without regard to whether such debt is expressly so designated;
        "(C) established or subject to establishment before, on, or after the date of the order for relief in a case under this title, by reason of applicable provisions of—
          "(i) a separation agreement, divorce decree, or property settlement agreement;
          "(ii) an order of a court of record; or
          "(iii) a determination made in accordance with applicable nonbankruptcy law by a governmental unit; and
        "(D) not assigned to a nongovernmental entity, unless that obligation is assigned voluntarily by the spouse, former spouse, child of the debtor, or such child's parent, legal guardian, or responsible relative for the purpose of collecting the debt;".

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 212. PRIORITIES FOR CLAIMS FOR DOMESTIC SUPPORT OBLIGATIONS.

    Section 507(a) of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) by striking paragraph (7);

      (2) by redesignating paragraphs (1) through (6) as paragraphs (2) through (7), respectively;

      (3) in paragraph (2), as so redesignated, by striking "First" and inserting "Second";

      (4) in paragraph (3), as so redesignated, by striking "Second" and inserting "Third";

      (5) in paragraph (4), as so redesignated—

        (A) by striking "Third" and inserting "Fourth"; and

        (B) by striking the semicolon at the end and inserting a period;

      (6) in paragraph (5), as so redesignated, by striking "Fourth" and inserting "Fifth";

      (7) in paragraph (6), as so redesignated, by striking "Fifth" and inserting "Sixth";

      (8) in paragraph (7), as so redesignated, by striking "Sixth" and inserting "Seventh"; and

      (9) by inserting before paragraph (2), as so redesignated, the following:
        "(A) Allowed unsecured claims for domestic support obligations that, as of the date of the filing of the petition in a case under this title, are owed to or recoverable by a spouse, former spouse, or child of the debtor, or such child's parent, legal guardian, or responsible relative, without regard to whether the claim is filed by such person or is filed by a governmental unit on behalf of such person, on the condition that funds received under this paragraph by a governmental unit under this title after the date of the filing of the petition shall be applied and distributed in accordance with applicable nonbankruptcy law.
        "(B) Subject to claims under subparagraph (A), allowed unsecured claims for domestic support obligations that, as of the date of the filing of the petition, are assigned by a spouse, former spouse, child of the debtor, or such child's parent, legal guardian, or responsible relative to a governmental unit (unless such obligation is assigned voluntarily by the spouse, former spouse, child, parent, legal guardian, or responsible relative of the child for the purpose of collecting the debt) or are owed directly to or recoverable by a governmental unit under applicable nonbankruptcy law, on the condition that funds received under this paragraph by a governmental unit under this title after the date of the filing of the petition be applied and distributed in accordance with applicable nonbankruptcy law.
        "(C) If a trustee is appointed or elected under section 701, 702, 703, 1104, 1202, or 1302, the administrative expenses of the trustee allowed under paragraphs (1)(A), (2), and (6) of section 503(b) shall be paid before payment of claims under subparagraphs (A) and (B), to the extent that the trustee administers assets that are otherwise available for the payment of such claims.".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 213. REQUIREMENTS TO OBTAIN CONFIRMATION AND DISCHARGE IN CASES INVOLVING DOMESTIC SUPPORT OBLIGATIONS.

    Title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in section 1129(a), by adding at the end the following:
      "(14) If the debtor is required by a judicial or administrative order, or by statute, to pay a domestic support obligation, the debtor has paid all amounts payable under such order or such statute for such obligation that first become payable after the date of the filing of the petition.";

        (A) in paragraph (8), by striking "or" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (9), by striking the period at the end and inserting "; and"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(10) failure of the debtor to pay any domestic support obligation that first becomes payable after the date of the filing of the petition.";

        (A) in paragraph (2), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (3), by striking the period at the end and inserting "; and"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(4) notwithstanding any other provision of this section, a plan may provide for less than full payment of all amounts owed for a claim entitled to priority under section 507(a)(1)(B) only if the plan provides that all of the debtor's projected disposable income for a 5-year period beginning on the date that the first payment is due under the plan will be applied to make payments under the plan.";

        (A) in paragraph (10), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) by redesignating paragraph (11) as paragraph (12); and

        (C) by inserting after paragraph (10) the following:
      "(11) provide for the payment of interest accruing after the date of the filing of the petition on unsecured claims that are nondischargeable under section 1228(a), except that such interest may be paid only to the extent that the debtor has disposable income available to pay such interest after making provision for full payment of all allowed claims; and";

        (A) in paragraph (5), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (6), by striking the period at the end and inserting "; and"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(7) the debtor has paid all amounts that are required to be paid under a domestic support obligation and that first become payable after the date of the filing of the petition if the debtor is required by a judicial or administrative order, or by statute, to pay such domestic support obligation.";

      (6) in section 1228(a), in the matter preceding paragraph (1), by inserting ", and in the case of a debtor who is required by a judicial or administrative order, or by statute, to pay a domestic support obligation, after such debtor certifies that all amounts payable under such order or such statute that are due on or before the date of the certification (including amounts due before the petition was filed, but only to the extent provided for by the plan) have been paid" after "completion by the debtor of all payments under the plan";

        (A) in paragraph (9), by striking "or" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (10), by striking the period at the end and inserting "; or"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(11) failure of the debtor to pay any domestic support obligation that first becomes payable after the date of the filing of the petition.";

        (A) in paragraph (2), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (3), by striking the period at the end and inserting "; and"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(4) notwithstanding any other provision of this section, a plan may provide for less than full payment of all amounts owed for a claim entitled to priority under section 507(a)(1)(B) only if the plan provides that all of the debtor's projected disposable income for a 5-year period beginning on the date that the first payment is due under the plan will be applied to make payments under the plan.";

        (A) in paragraph (9), by striking "; and" and inserting a semicolon;

        (B) by redesignating paragraph (10) as paragraph (11); and

        (C) inserting after paragraph (9) the following:
      "(10) provide for the payment of interest accruing after the date of the filing of the petition on unsecured claims that are nondischargeable under section 1328(a), except that such interest may be paid only to the extent that the debtor has disposable income available to pay such interest after making provision for full payment of all allowed claims; and";

      (10) in section 1325(a), as amended by section 102, by inserting after paragraph (7) the following:
      "(8) the debtor has paid all amounts that are required to be paid under a domestic support obligation and that first become payable after the date of the filing of the petition if the debtor is required by a judicial or administrative order, or by statute, to pay such domestic support obligation; and";

      (11) in section 1328(a), in the matter preceding paragraph (1), by inserting ", and in the case of a debtor who is required by a judicial or administrative order, or by statute, to pay a domestic support obligation, after such debtor certifies that all amounts payable under such order or such statute that are due on or before the date of the certification (including amounts due before the petition was filed, but only to the extent provided for by the plan) have been paid" after "completion by the debtor of all payments under the plan".

 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 

 

 


SEC. 214. EXCEPTIONS TO AUTOMATIC STAY IN DOMESTIC SUPPORT OBLIGATION PROCEEDINGS.

    Section 362(b) of title 11, United States Code, is amended by striking paragraph (2) and inserting the following:
      "(2) under subsection (a)—
        "(A) of the commencement or continuation of a civil action or proceeding—
          "(i) for the establishment of paternity;
          "(ii) for the establishment or modification of an order for domestic support obligations;
          "(iii) concerning child custody or visitation;
          "(iv) for the dissolution of a marriage, except to the extent that such proceeding seeks to determine the division of property that is property of the estate; or
          "(v) regarding domestic violence;
        "(B) of the collection of a domestic support obligation from property that is not property of the estate;
        "(C) with respect to the withholding of income that is property of the estate or property of the debtor for payment of a domestic support obligation under a judicial or administrative order or a statute;
        "(D) of the withholding, suspension, or restriction of a driver's license, a professional or occupational license, or a recreational license, under State law, as specified in section 466(a)(16) of the Social Security Act;
        "(E) of the reporting of overdue support owed by a parent to any consumer reporting agency as specified in section 466(a)(7) of the Social Security Act;
        "(F) of the interception of a tax refund, as specified in sections 464 and 466(a)(3) of the Social Security Act or under an analogous State law; or
        "(G) of the enforcement of a medical obligation, as specified under title IV of the Social Security Act;".

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 215. NONDISCHARGEABILITY OF CERTAIN DEBTS FOR ALIMONY, MAINTENANCE, AND SUPPORT.

    Section 523 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (a)

        (A) by striking paragraph (5) and inserting the following:
      "(5) for a domestic support obligation;"; and

        (B) by striking paragraph (18);

      (2) in subsection (c), by striking "(6), or (15)" each place it appears and inserting "or (6)"; and

      (3) in paragraph (15), as added by Public Law 103-394 (108 Stat. 4133)—

        (A) by inserting "to a spouse, former spouse, or child of the debtor and" before "not of the kind";

        (B) by inserting "or" after "court of record,"; and

        (C) by striking "unless—" and all that follows through the end of the paragraph and inserting a semicolon.

 

 

 

 


SEC. 216. CONTINUED LIABILITY OF PROPERTY.

    Section 522 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (c), by striking paragraph (1) and inserting the following:
      "(1) a debt of a kind specified in paragraph (1) or (5) of section 523(a) (in which case, notwithstanding any provision of applicable nonbankruptcy law to the contrary, such property shall be liable for a debt of a kind specified in section 523(a)(5));";

      (2) in subsection (f)(1)(A), by striking the dash and all that follows through the end of the subparagraph and inserting "of a kind that is specified in section 523(a)(5); or"; and

      (3) in subsection (g)(2), by striking "subsection (f)(2)" and inserting "subsection (f)(1)(B)".


SEC. 217. PROTECTION OF DOMESTIC SUPPORT CLAIMS AGAINST PREFERENTIAL TRANSFER MOTIONS.

    Section 547(c)(7) of title 11, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:
      "(7) to the extent such transfer was a bona fide payment of a debt for a domestic support obligation;".


SEC. 218. DISPOSABLE INCOME DEFINED.

    Section 1225(b)(2)(A) of title 11, United States Code, is amended by inserting "or for a domestic support obligation that first becomes payable after the date of the filing of the petition" after "dependent of the debtor".


SEC. 219. COLLECTION OF CHILD SUPPORT.

    (a) DUTIES OF TRUSTEE UNDER CHAPTER 7.—Section 704 of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 102, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (a)

        (A) in paragraph (8), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (9), by striking the period and inserting a semicolon; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(10) if with respect to the debtor there is a claim for a domestic support obligation, provide the applicable notice specified in subsection (c); and"; and

      (2) by adding at the end the following:

    "(c)(1) In a case described in subsection (a)(10) to which subsection (a)(10) applies, the trustee shall—

      "(A)(i) provide written notice to the holder of the claim described in subsection (a)(10) of such claim and of the right of such holder to use the services of the State child support enforcement agency established under sections 464 and 466 of the Social Security Act for the State in which such holder resides, for assistance in collecting child support during and after the case under this title;

      "(ii) include in the notice provided under clause (i) the address and telephone number of such State child support enforcement agency; and

      "(iii) include in the notice provided under clause (i) an explanation of the rights of such holder to payment of such claim under this chapter;

      "(B)(i) provide written notice to such State child support enforcement agency of such claim; and

      "(ii) include in the notice provided under clause (i) the name, address, and telephone number of such holder; and

      "(C) at such time as the debtor is granted a discharge under section 727, provide written notice to such holder and to such State child support enforcement agency of—
        "(i) the granting of the discharge;
        "(ii) the last recent known address of the debtor;
        "(iii) the last recent known name and address of the debtor's employer; and
        "(iv) the name of each creditor that holds a claim that—
          "(I) is not discharged under paragraph (2), (4), or (14A) of section 523(a); or
          "(II) was reaffirmed by the debtor under section 524(c).

    "(2)(A) The holder of a claim described in subsection (a)(10) or the State child support enforcement agency of the State in which such holder resides may request from a creditor described in paragraph (1)(C)(iv) the last known address of the debtor.

    "(B) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a creditor that makes a disclosure of a last known address of a debtor in connection with a request made under subparagraph (A) shall not be liable by reason of making such disclosure.".

    (b)  DUTIES OF TRUSTEE UNDER CHAPTER 11.—Section 1106 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (a)

        (A) in paragraph (6), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (7), by striking the period and inserting "; and"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(8) if with respect to the debtor there is a claim for a domestic support obligation, provide the applicable notice specified in subsection (c)."; and

      (2) by adding at the end the following:

    "(c)(1) In a case described in subsection (a)(8) to which subsection (a)(8) applies, the trustee shall—

      "(A)(i) provide written notice to the holder of the claim described in subsection (a)(8) of such claim and of the right of such holder to use the services of the State child support enforcement agency established under sections 464 and 466 of the Social Security Act for the State in which such holder resides, for assistance in collecting child support during and after the case under this title; and

      "(ii) include in the notice required by clause (i) the address and telephone number of such State child support enforcement agency;

      "(B)(i) provide written notice to such State child support enforcement agency of such claim; and

      "(ii) include in the notice required by clause (i) the name, address, and telephone number of such holder; and

      "(C) at such time as the debtor is granted a discharge under section 1141, provide written notice to such holder and to such State child support enforcement agency of—
        "(i) the granting of the discharge;
        "(ii) the last recent known address of the debtor;
        "(iii) the last recent known name and address of the debtor's employer; and
        "(iv) the name of each creditor that holds a claim that—
          "(I) is not discharged under paragraph (2), (4), or (14A) of section 523(a); or
          "(II) was reaffirmed by the debtor under section 524(c).

    "(2)(A) The holder of a claim described in subsection (a)(8) or the State child enforcement support agency of the State in which such holder resides may request from a creditor described in paragraph (1)(C)(iv) the last known address of the debtor.

    "(B) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a creditor that makes a disclosure of a last known address of a debtor in connection with a request made under subparagraph (A) shall not be liable by reason of making such disclosure.".

    (c) DUTIES OF TRUSTEE UNDER CHAPTER 12.—Section 1202 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (b)

        (A) in paragraph (4), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (5), by striking the period and inserting "; and"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(6) if with respect to the debtor there is a claim for a domestic support obligation, provide the applicable notice specified in subsection (c)."; and

      (2) by adding at the end the following:

    "(c)(1) In a case described in subsection (b)(6) to which subsection (b)(6) applies, the trustee shall—

      "(A)(i) provide written notice to the holder of the claim described in subsection (b)(6) of such claim and of the right of such holder to use the services of the State child support enforcement agency established under sections 464 and 466 of the Social Security Act for the State in which such holder resides, for assistance in collecting child support during and after the case under this title; and

      "(ii) include in the notice provided under clause (i) the address and telephone number of such State child support enforcement agency;

      "(B)(i) provide written notice to such State child support enforcement agency of such claim; and

      "(ii) include in the notice provided under clause (i) the name, address, and telephone number of such holder; and

      "(C) at such time as the debtor is granted a discharge under section 1228, provide written notice to such holder and to such State child support enforcement agency of—
        "(i) the granting of the discharge;
        "(ii) the last recent known address of the debtor;
        "(iii) the last recent known name and address of the debtor's employer; and
        "(iv) the name of each creditor that holds a claim that—
          "(I) is not discharged under paragraph (2), (4), or (14A) of section 523(a); or
          "(II) was reaffirmed by the debtor under section 524(c).

    "(2)(A) The holder of a claim described in subsection (b)(6) or the State child support enforcement agency of the State in which such holder resides may request from a creditor described in paragraph (1)(C)(iv) the last known address of the debtor.

    "(B) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a creditor that makes a disclosure of a last known address of a debtor in connection with a request made under subparagraph (A) shall not be liable by reason of making that disclosure.".

    (d) DUTIES OF TRUSTEE UNDER CHAPTER 13.—Section 1302 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (b)

        (A) in paragraph (4), by striking "and" at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (5), by striking the period and inserting "; and"; and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:
      "(6) if with respect to the debtor there is a claim for a domestic support obligation, provide the applicable notice specified in subsection (d)."; and

      (2) by adding at the end the following:

    "(d)(1) In a case described in subsection (b)(6) to which subsection (b)(6) applies, the trustee shall—

      "(A)(i) provide written notice to the holder of the claim described in subsection (b)(6) of such claim and of the right of such holder to use the services of the State child support enforcement agency established under sections 464 and 466 of the Social Security Act for the State in which such holder resides, for assistance in collecting child support during and after the case under this title; and

      "(ii) include in the notice provided under clause (i) the address and telephone number of such State child support enforcement agency;

      "(B)(i) provide written notice to such State child support enforcement agency of such claim; and

      "(ii) include in the notice provided under clause (i) the name, address, and telephone number of such holder; and

      "(C) at such time as the debtor is granted a discharge under section 1328, provide written notice to such holder and to such State child support enforcement agency of—
        "(i) the granting of the discharge;
        "(ii) the last recent known address of the debtor;
        "(iii) the last recent known name and address of the debtor's employer; and
        "(iv) the name of each creditor that holds a claim that—
          "(I) is not discharged under paragraph (2) or (4) of section 523(a); or
          "(II) was reaffirmed by the debtor under section 524(c).

    "(2)(A) The holder of a claim described in subsection (b)(6) or the State child support enforcement agency of the State in which such holder resides may request from a creditor described in paragraph (1)(C)(iv) the last known address of the debtor.

    "(B) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a creditor that makes a disclosure of a last known address of a debtor in connection with a request made under subparagraph (A) shall not be liable by reason of making that disclosure.".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 220. NONDISCHARGEABILITY OF CERTAIN EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS AND LOANS.

    Section 523(a) of title 11, United States Code, is amended by striking paragraph (8) and inserting the following:
      "(8) unless excepting such debt from discharge under this paragraph would impose an undue hardship on the debtor and the debtor's dependents, for—

        "(A)(i) an educational benefit overpayment or loan made, insured, or guaranteed by a governmental unit, or made under any program funded in whole or in part by a governmental unit or nonprofit institution; or

        "(ii) an obligation to repay funds received as an educational benefit, scholarship, or stipend; or

        "(B) any other educational loan that is a qualified education loan, as defined in section 221(d)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, incurred by a debtor who is an individual;".

 

 

 

 

 


Subtitle C — Other Consumer Protections

SEC. 221. AMENDMENTS TO DISCOURAGE ABUSIVE BANKRUPTCY FILINGS.

    Section 110 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (a)(1), by striking "or an employee of an attorney" and inserting "for the debtor or an employee of such attorney under the direct supervision of such attorney";

      (2) in subsection (b)

        (A) in paragraph (1), by adding at the end the following: "If a bankruptcy petition preparer is not an individual, then an officer, principal, responsible person, or partner of the bankruptcy petition preparer shall be required to—
      "(A) sign the document for filing; and
      "(B) print on the document the name and address of that officer, principal, responsible person, or partner."; and

        (B) by striking paragraph (2) and inserting the following:

    "(2)(A) Before preparing any document for filing or accepting any fees from a debtor, the bankruptcy petition preparer shall provide to the debtor a written notice which shall be on an official form prescribed by the Judicial Conference of the United States in accordance with rule 9009 of the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure.

    "(B) The notice under subparagraph (A)—

      "(i) shall inform the debtor in simple language that a bankruptcy petition preparer is not an attorney and may not practice law or give legal advice;
      "(ii) may contain a description of examples of legal advice that a bankruptcy petition preparer is not authorized to give, in addition to any advice that the preparer may not give by reason of subsection (e)(2); and
        "(I) be signed by the debtor and, under penalty of perjury, by the bankruptcy petition preparer; and
        "(II) be filed with any document for filing.";

      (3) in subsection (c)

        (A) in paragraph (2)

          (i) by striking "(2) For purposes" and inserting "(2)(A) Subject to subparagraph (B), for purposes"; and

          (ii) by adding at the end the following:
    "(B) If a bankruptcy petition preparer is not an individual, the identifying number of the bankruptcy petition preparer shall be the Social Security account number of the officer, principal, responsible person, or partner of the bankruptcy petition preparer."; and

        (B) by striking paragraph (3);

      (4) in subsection (d)

        (A) by striking "(d)(1)" and inserting "(d)"; and

        (B) by striking paragraph (2);

      (5) in subsection (e)

        (A) by striking paragraph (2); and

        (B) by adding at the end the following:

    "(2)(A) A bankruptcy petition preparer may not offer a potential bankruptcy debtor any legal advice, including any legal advice described in subparagraph (B).

    "(B) The legal advice referred to in subparagraph (A) includes advising the debtor—

      "(i) whether—
        "(I) to file a petition under this title; or
        "(II) commencing a case under chapter 7, 11, 12, or 13 is appropriate;
      "(ii) whether the debtor's debts will be discharged in a case under this title;
      "(iii) whether the debtor will be able to retain the debtor's home, car, or other property after commencing a case under this title;
      "(iv) concerning—
        "(I) the tax consequences of a case brought under this title; or
        "(II) the dischargeability of tax claims;
      "(v) whether the debtor may or should promise to repay debts to a creditor or enter into a reaffirmation agreement with a creditor to reaffirm a debt;
      "(vi) concerning how to characterize the nature of the debtor's interests in property or the debtor's debts; or
      "(vii) concerning bankruptcy procedures and rights.";

      (6) in subsection (f)

        (A) by striking "(f)(1)" and inserting "(f)"; and

        (B) by striking paragraph (2);

      (7) in subsection (g)

        (A) by striking "(g)(1)" and inserting "(g)"; and

        (B) by striking paragraph (2);

      (8) in subsection (h)

        (A) by redesignating paragraphs (1) through (4) as paragraphs (2) through (5), respectively;

        (B) by inserting before paragraph (2), as so redesignated, the following:
    "(1) The Supreme Court may promulgate rules under section 2075 of title 28, or the Judicial Conference of the United States may prescribe guidelines, for setting a maximum allowable fee chargeable by a bankruptcy petition preparer. A bankruptcy petition preparer shall notify the debtor of any such maximum amount before preparing any document for filing for a debtor or accepting any fee from the debtor.";

        (C) in paragraph (2), as so redesignated—

          (i) by striking "Within 10 days after the date of the filing of a petition, a bankruptcy petition preparer shall file a" and inserting "A";

          (ii) by inserting "by the bankruptcy petition preparer shall be filed together with the petition," after "perjury"; and

          (iii) by adding at the end the following: "If rules or guidelines setting a maximum fee for services have been promulgated or prescribed under paragraph (1), the declaration under this paragraph shall include a certification that the bankruptcy petition preparer complied with the notification requirement under paragraph (1).";

        (D)  by striking paragraph (3), as so redesignated, and inserting the following:

    "(3)(A) The court shall disallow and order the immediate turnover to the bankruptcy trustee any fee referred to in paragraph (2) found to be in excess of the value of any services—

      "(i) rendered by the bankruptcy petition preparer during the 12-month period immediately preceding the date of the filing of the petition; or

      "(ii) found to be in violation of any rule or guideline promulgated or prescribed under paragraph (1).

    "(B) All fees charged by a bankruptcy petition preparer may be forfeited in any case in which the bankruptcy petition preparer fails to comply with this subsection or subsection (b), (c), (d), (e), (f), or (g).

    "(C) An individual may exempt any funds recovered under this paragraph under section 522(b)."; and

        (E) in paragraph (4), as so redesignated, by striking "or the United States trustee" and inserting "the United States trustee (or the bankruptcy administrator, if any) or the court, on the initiative of the court,";

      (9) in subsection (i)(1), by striking the matter preceding subparagraph (A) and inserting the following:
    "(i)(1) If a bankruptcy petition preparer violates this section or commits any act that the court finds to be fraudulent, unfair, or deceptive, on the motion of the debtor, trustee, United States trustee (or the bankruptcy administrator, if any), and after notice and a hearing, the court shall order the bankruptcy petition preparer to pay to the debtor—";

      (10) in subsection (j)

        (A) in paragraph (2)

          (i) in subparagraph (A)(i)(I), by striking "a violation of which subjects a person to criminal penalty";

          (ii) in subparagraph (B)

            (I) by striking "or has not paid a penalty" and inserting "has not paid a penalty"; and

            (II) by inserting "or failed to disgorge all fees ordered by the court" after "a penalty imposed under this section,";

        (B) by redesignating paragraph (3) as paragraph (4); and

        (C) by inserting after paragraph (2) the following:
    "(3) The court, as part of its contempt power, may enjoin a bankruptcy petition preparer that has failed to comply with a previous order issued under this section. The injunction under this paragraph may be issued on the motion of the court, the trustee, or the United States trustee (or the bankruptcy administrator, if any)."; and

      (11) by adding at the end the following:

    "(l)(1) A bankruptcy petition preparer who fails to comply with any provision of subsection (b), (c), (d), (e), (f), (g), or (h) may be fined not more than $500 for each such failure.

    "(2) The court shall triple the amount of a fine assessed under paragraph (1) in any case in which the court finds that a bankruptcy petition preparer—

      "(A) advised the debtor to exclude assets or income that should have been included on applicable schedules;

      "(B) advised the debtor to use a false Social Security account number;

      "(C) failed to inform the debtor that the debtor was filing for relief under this title; or

      "(D) prepared a document for filing in a manner that failed to disclose the identity of the bankruptcy petition preparer.

    "(3) A debtor, trustee, creditor, or United States trustee (or the bankruptcy administrator, if any) may file a motion for an order imposing a fine on the bankruptcy petition preparer for any violation of this section.

    "(4)(A) Fines imposed under this subsection in judicial districts served by United States trustees shall be paid to the United States trustee, who shall deposit an amount equal to such fines in a special account of the United States Trustee System Fund referred to in section 586(e)(2) of title 28. Amounts deposited under this subparagraph shall be available to fund the enforcement of this section on a national basis.

    "(B) Fines imposed under this subsection in judicial districts served by bankruptcy administrators shall be deposited as offsetting receipts to the fund established under section 1931 of title 28, and shall remain available until expended to reimburse any appropriation for the amount paid out of such appropriation for expenses of the operation and maintenance of the courts of the United States.".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 222. SENSE OF CONGRESS.

    It is the sense of Congress that States should develop curricula relating to the subject of personal finance, designed for use in elementary and secondary schools.


SEC. 223. ADDITIONAL AMENDMENTS TO TITLE 11, UNITED STATES CODE.

    Section 507(a) of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 212, is amended by inserting after paragraph (9) the following:
      "(10) Tenth, allowed claims for death or personal injury resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle or vessel if such operation was unlawful because the debtor was intoxicated from using alcohol, a drug, or another substance.".


SEC. 224. PROTECTION OF RETIREMENT SAVINGS IN BANKRUPTCY.

    (a) IN GENERAL.—Section 522 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (b)

        (A) in paragraph (2)

          (i) in subparagraph (A), by striking "and" at the end;

          (ii) in subparagraph (B), by striking the period at the end and inserting "; and";

          (iii) by adding at the end the following:
      "(C) retirement funds to the extent that those funds are in a fund or account that is exempt from taxation under section 401, 403, 408, 408A, 414, 457, or 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986."; and

          (iv) by striking "(2)(A) any property" and inserting:
    "(3) Property listed in this paragraph is—
      "(A) any property";

        (B) by striking paragraph (1) and inserting:
    "(2) Property listed in this paragraph is property that is specified under subsection (d), unless the State law that is applicable to the debtor under paragraph (3)(A) specifically does not so authorize.";

        (C) by striking "(b) Notwithstanding" and inserting "(b)(1) Notwithstanding";

        (D)  by striking "paragraph (2)" each place it appears and inserting "paragraph (3)";

        (E) by striking "paragraph (1)" each place it appears and inserting "paragraph (2)";

        (F) by striking "Such property is—"; and

        (G) by adding at the end the following:
    "(4) For purposes of paragraph (3)(C) and subsection (d)(12), the following shall apply:
      "(A) If the retirement funds are in a retirement fund that has received a favorable determination under section 7805 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, and that determination is in effect as of the date of the filing of the petition in a case under this title, those funds shall be presumed to be exempt from the estate.
      "(B) If the retirement funds are in a retirement fund that has not received a favorable determination under such section 7805, those funds are exempt from the estate if the debtor demonstrates that—
        "(i) no prior determination to the contrary has been made by a court or the Internal Revenue Service; and

        "(ii)(I) the retirement fund is in substantial compliance with the applicable requirements of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986; or

        "(II) the retirement fund fails to be in substantial compliance with the applicable requirements of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 and the debtor is not materially responsible for that failure.

      "(C) A direct transfer of retirement funds from 1 fund or account that is exempt from taxation under section 401, 403, 408, 408A, 414, 457, or 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, under section 401(a)(31) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or otherwise, shall not cease to qualify for exemption under paragraph (3)(C) or subsection (d)(12) by reason of such direct transfer.

      "(D)(i) Any distribution that qualifies as an eligible rollover distribution within the meaning of section 402(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 or that is described in clause (ii) shall not cease to qualify for exemption under paragraph (3)(C) or subsection (d)(12) by reason of such distribution.

      "(ii) A distribution described in this clause is an amount that—

        "(I) has been distributed from a fund or account that is exempt from taxation under section 401, 403, 408, 408A, 414, 457, or 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986; and

        "(II) to the extent allowed by law, is deposited in such a fund or account not later than 60 days after the distribution of such amount."; and

      (2) in subsection (d)

        (A) in the matter preceding paragraph (1), by striking "subsection (b)(1)" and inserting "subsection (b)(2)"; and

        (B) by adding at the end the following:
      "(12) Retirement funds to the extent that those funds are in a fund or account that is exempt from taxation under section 401, 403, 408, 408A, 414, 457, or 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.".

    (b)  AUTOMATIC STAY.—Section 362(b) of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in paragraph (17), by striking "or" at the end;

      (2) in paragraph (18), by striking the period and inserting a semicolon; and

      (3) by inserting after paragraph (18) the following:
      "(19) under subsection (a), of withholding of income from a debtor's wages and collection of amounts withheld, under the debtor's agreement authorizing that withholding and collection for the benefit of a pension, profit-sharing, stock bonus, or other plan established under section 401, 403, 408, 408A, 414, 457, or 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, that is sponsored by the employer of the debtor, or an affiliate, successor, or predecessor of such employer—
        "(A) to the extent that the amounts withheld and collected are used solely for payments relating to a loan from a plan under section 408(b)(1) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 or is subject to section 72(p) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986; or
        "(B) a loan from a thrift savings plan permitted under subchapter III of chapter 84 of title 5, that satisfies the requirements of section 8433(g) of such title;
      but nothing in this paragraph may be construed to provide that any loan made under a governmental plan under section 414(d), or a contract or account under section 403(b), of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 constitutes a claim or a debt under this title;".

    (c) EXCEPTIONS TO DISCHARGE.—Section 523(a) of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 215, is amended by inserting after paragraph (17) the following:
      "(18) owed to a pension, profit-sharing, stock bonus, or other plan established under section 401, 403, 408, 408A, 414, 457, or 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, under—
        "(A) a loan permitted under section 408(b)(1) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, or subject to section 72(p) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986; or
        "(B) a loan from a thrift savings plan permitted under subchapter III of chapter 84 of title 5, that satisfies the requirements of section 8433(g) of such title;
      but nothing in this paragraph may be construed to provide that any loan made under a governmental plan under section 414(d), or a contract or account under section 403(b), of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 constitutes a claim or a debt under this title; or".

    (d) PLAN CONTENTS.—Section 1322 of title 11, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
    "(f) A plan may not materially alter the terms of a loan described in section 362(b)(19) and any amounts required to repay such loan shall not constitute 'disposable income' under section 1325.".

    (e) ASSET LIMITATION.—

      (1) LIMITATION.—Section 522 of title 11, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
    "(n) For assets in individual retirement accounts described in section 408 or 408A of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, other than a simplified employee pension under section 408(k) of such Code or a simple retirement account under section 408(p) of such Code, the aggregate value of such assets exempted under this section, without regard to amounts attributable to rollover contributions under section 402(c), 402(e)(6), 403(a)(4), 403(a)(5), and 403(b)(8) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, and earnings thereon, shall not exceed $1,000,000 in a case filed by a debtor who is an individual, except that such amount may be increased if the interests of justice so require.".

      (2) ADJUSTMENT OF DOLLAR AMOUNTS.—Paragraphs (1) and (2) of section 104(b) of title 11, United States Code, are amended by inserting "522(n)," after "522(d),".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 225. PROTECTION OF EDUCATION SAVINGS IN BANKRUPTCY.

    (a) EXCLUSIONS.—Section 541 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) in subsection (b)

        (A) in paragraph (4), by striking "or" at the end;

        (B) by redesignating paragraph (5) as paragraph (9); and

        (C) by inserting after paragraph (4) the following:
      "(5) funds placed in an education individual retirement account (as defined in section 530(b)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) not later than 365 days before the date of the filing of the petition in a case under this title, but—
        "(A) only if the designated beneficiary of such account was a child, stepchild, grandchild, or stepgrandchild of the debtor for the taxable year for which funds were placed in such account;
        "(B) only to the extent that such funds—
          "(i) are not pledged or promised to any entity in connection with any extension of credit; and
          "(ii) are not excess contributions (as described in section 4973(e) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986); and
        "(C) in the case of funds placed in all such accounts having the same designated beneficiary not earlier than 720 days nor later than 365 days before such date, only so much of such funds as does not exceed $5,000;
      "(6) funds used to purchase a tuition credit or certificate or contributed to an account in accordance with section 529(b)(1)(A) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 under a qualified State tuition program (as defined in section 529(b)(1) of such Code) not later than 365 days before the date of the filing of the petition in a case under this title, but—
        "(A) only if the designated beneficiary of the amounts paid or contributed to such tuition program was a child, stepchild, grandchild, or stepgrandchild of the debtor for the taxable year for which funds were paid or contributed;
        "(B) with respect to the aggregate amount paid or contributed to such program having the same designated beneficiary, only so much of such amount as does not exceed the total contributions permitted under section 529(b)(7) of such Code with respect to such beneficiary, as adjusted beginning on the date of the filing of the petition in a case under this title by the annual increase or decrease (rounded to the nearest tenth of 1 percent) in the education expenditure category of the Consumer Price Index prepared by the Department of Labor; and
        "(C) in the case of funds paid or contributed to such program having the same designated beneficiary not earlier than 720 days nor later than 365 days before such date, only so much of such funds as does not exceed $5,000;"; and

      (2) by adding at the end the following:
    "(e) In determining whether any of the relationships specified in paragraph (5)(A) or (6)(A) of subsection (b) exists, a legally adopted child of an individual (and a child who is a member of an individual's household, if placed with such individual by an authorized placement agency for legal adoption by such individual), or a foster child of an individual (if such child has as the child's principal place of abode the home of the debtor and is a member of the debtor's household) shall be treated as a child of such individual by blood.".

    (b)  DEBTOR'S DUTIES.—Section 521 of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 106, is amended by adding at the end the following:
    "(c) In addition to meeting the requirements under subsection (a), a debtor shall file with the court a record of any interest that a debtor has in an education individual retirement account (as defined in section 530(b)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) or under a qualified State tuition program (as defined in section 529(b)(1) of such Code).".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 226. DEFINITIONS.

    (a) DEFINITIONS.—Section 101 of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) by inserting after paragraph (2) the following:
      "(3) 'assisted person' means any person whose debts consist primarily of consumer debts and the value of whose nonexempt property is less than $150,000;";

      (2) by inserting after paragraph (4) the following:
      "(4A) 'bankruptcy assistance' means any goods or services sold or otherwise provided to an assisted person with the express or implied purpose of providing information, advice, counsel, document preparation, or filing, or attendance at a creditors' meeting or appearing in a case or proceeding on behalf of another or providing legal representation with respect to a case or proceeding under this title;"; and

      (3) by inserting after paragraph (12) the following:
      "(12A) 'debt relief agency' means any person who provides any bankruptcy assistance to an assisted person in return for the payment of money or other valuable consideration, or who is a bankruptcy petition preparer under section 110, but does not include—
        "(A) any person who is an officer, director, employee, or agent of a person who provides such assistance or of the bankruptcy petition preparer;
        "(B) a nonprofit organization that is exempt from taxation under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986;
        "(C) a creditor of such assisted person, to the extent that the creditor is assisting such assisted person to restructure any debt owed by such assisted person to the creditor;
        "(D) a depository institution (as defined in section 3 of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act) or any Federal credit union or State credit union (as those terms are defined in section 101 of the Federal Credit Union Act), or any affiliate or subsidiary of such depository institution or credit union; or
        "(E) an author, publisher, distributor, or seller of works subject to copyright protection under title 17, when acting in such capacity.".

    (b)  CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—Section 104(b) of title 11, United States Code, is amended by inserting "101(3)," after "sections" each place it appears.

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 227. RESTRICTIONS ON DEBT RELIEF AGENCIES.

    (a) ENFORCEMENT.—Subchapter II of chapter 5 of title 11, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

"Sec. 526. Restrictions on debt relief agencies

    "(a) A debt relief agency shall not—
      "(1) fail to perform any service that such agency informed an assisted person or prospective assisted person it would provide in connection with a case or proceeding under this title;
      "(2) make any statement, or counsel or advise any assisted person or prospective assisted person to make a statement in a document filed in a case or proceeding under this title, that is untrue and misleading, or that upon the exercise of reasonable care, should have been known by such agency to be untrue or misleading;
      "(3) misrepresent to any assisted person or prospective assisted person, directly or indirectly, affirmatively or by material omission, with respect to—
        "(A) the services that such agency will provide to such person; or
        "(B) the benefits and risks that may result if such person becomes a debtor in a case under this title; or
      "(4) advise an assisted person or prospective assisted person to incur more debt in contemplation of such person filing a case under this title or to pay an attorney or bankruptcy petition preparer fee or charge for services performed as part of preparing for or representing a debtor in a case under this title.
    "(b) Any waiver by any assisted person of any protection or right provided under this section shall not be enforceable against the debtor by any Federal or State court or any other person, but may be enforced against a debt relief agency.

    "(c)(1) Any contract for bankruptcy assistance between a debt relief agency and an assisted person that does not comply with the material requirements of this section, section 527, or section 528 shall be void and may not be enforced by any Federal or State court or by any other person, other than such assisted person.

    "(2) Any debt relief agency shall be liable to an assisted person in the amount of any fees or charges in connection with providing bankruptcy assistance to such person that such debt relief agency has received, for actual damages, and for reasonable attorneys' fees and costs if such agency is found, after notice and a hearing, to have—

      "(A) intentionally or negligently failed to comply with any provision of this section, section 527, or section 528 with respect to a case or proceeding under this title for such assisted person;

      "(B) provided bankruptcy assistance to an assisted person in a case or proceeding under this title that is dismissed or converted to a case under another chapter of this title because of such agency's intentional or negligent failure to file any required document including those specified in section 521; or

      "(C) intentionally or negligently disregarded the material requirements of this title or the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure applicable to such agency.

    "(3) In addition to such other remedies as are provided under State law, whenever the chief law enforcement officer of a State, or an official or agency designated by a State, has reason to believe that any person has violated or is violating this section, the State—

      "(A) may bring an action to enjoin such violation;

      "(B) may bring an action on behalf of its residents to recover the actual damages of assisted persons arising from such violation, including any liability under paragraph (2); and

      "(C) in the case of any successful action under subparagraph (A) or (B), shall be awarded the costs of the action and reasonable attorneys' fees as determined by the court.

    "(4) The district courts of the United States for districts located in the State shall have concurrent jurisdiction of any action under subparagraph (A) or (B) of paragraph (3).

    "(5) Notwithstanding any other provision of Federal law and in addition to any other remedy provided under Federal or State law, if the court, on its own motion or on the motion of the United States trustee or the debtor, finds that a person intentionally violated this section, or engaged in a clear and consistent pattern or practice of violating this section, the court may—

      "(A) enjoin the violation of such section; or

      "(B) impose an appropriate civil penalty against such person.

    "(d) No provision of this section, section 527, or section 528 shall—
      "(1) annul, alter, affect, or exempt any person subject to such sections from complying with any law of any State except to the extent that such law is inconsistent with those sections, and then only to the extent of the inconsistency; or
      "(2) be deemed to limit or curtail the authority or ability—
        "(A) of a State or subdivision or instrumentality thereof, to determine and enforce qualifications for the practice of law under the laws of that State; or
        "(B) of a Federal court to determine and enforce the qualifications for the practice of law before that court.".

    (b)  CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—The table of sections for chapter 5 of title 11, United States Code, is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 525, the following:
      "526. Restrictions on debt relief agencies.".

 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 228. DISCLOSURES.

    (a) DISCLOSURES.—Subchapter II of chapter 5 of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 227, is amended by adding at the end the following:

"Sec. 527. Disclosures

    "(a) A debt relief agency providing bankruptcy assistance to an assisted person shall provide—
      "(1) the written notice required under section 342(b)(1); and
      "(2) to the extent not covered in the written notice described in paragraph (1), and not later than 3 business days after the first date on which a debt relief agency first offers to provide any bankruptcy assistance services to an assisted person, a clear and conspicuous written notice advising assisted persons that—
        "(A) all information that the assisted person is required to provide with a petition and thereafter during a case under this title is required to be complete, accurate, and truthful;
        "(B) all assets and all liabilities are required to be completely and accurately disclosed in the documents filed to commence the case, and the replacement value of each asset as defined in section 506 must be stated in those documents where requested after reasonable inquiry to establish such value;
        "(C) current monthly income, the amounts specified in section 707(b)(2), and, in a case under chapter 13 of this title, disposable income (determined in accordance with section 707(b)(2)), are required to be stated after reasonable inquiry; and
        "(D) information that an assisted person provides during their case may be audited pursuant to this title, and that failure to provide such information may result in dismissal of the case under this title or other sanction, including a criminal sanction.
    "(b) A debt relief agency providing bankruptcy assistance to an assisted person shall provide each assisted person at the same time as the notices required under subsection (a)(1) the following statement, to the extent applicable, or one substantially similar. The statement shall be clear and conspicuous and shall be in a single document separate from other documents or notices provided to the assisted person:
    "IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT BANKRUPTCY ASSISTANCE SERVICES FROM AN ATTORNEY OR BANKRUPTCY PETITION PREPARER.
    " 'If you decide to seek bankruptcy relief, you can represent yourself, you can hire an attorney to represent you, or you can get help in some localities from a bankruptcy petition preparer who is not an attorney. THE LAW REQUIRES AN ATTORNEY OR BANKRUPTCY PETITION PREPARER TO GIVE YOU A WRITTEN CONTRACT SPECIFYING WHAT THE ATTORNEY OR BANKRUPTCY PETITION PREPARER WILL DO FOR YOU AND HOW MUCH IT WILL COST. Ask to see the contract before you hire anyone.
    " 'The following information helps you understand what must be done in a routine bankruptcy case to help you evaluate how much service you need. Although bankruptcy can be complex, many cases are routine.
    " 'Before filing a bankruptcy case, either you or your attorney should analyze your eligibility for different forms of debt relief available under the Bankruptcy Code and which form of relief is most likely to be beneficial for you. Be sure you understand the relief you can obtain and its limitations. To file a bankruptcy case, documents called a Petition, Schedules and Statement of Financial Affairs, as well as in some cases a Statement of Intention need to be prepared correctly and filed with the bankruptcy court. You will have to pay a filing fee to the bankruptcy court. Once your case starts, you will have to attend the required first meeting of creditors where you may be questioned by a court official called a "trustee" and by creditors.
    " 'If you choose to file a chapter 7 case, you may be asked by a creditor to reaffirm a debt. You may want help deciding whether to do so. A creditor is not permitted to coerce you into reaffirming your debts.
    " 'If you choose to file a chapter 13 case in which you repay your creditors what you can afford over 3 to 5 years, you may also want help with preparing your chapter 13 plan and with the confirmation hearing on your plan which will be before a bankruptcy judge.
    " 'If you select another type of relief under the Bankruptcy Code other than chapter 7 or chapter 13, you will want to find out what should be done from someone familiar with that type of relief.
    " 'Your bankruptcy case may also involve litigation. You are generally permitted to represent yourself in litigation in bankruptcy court, but only attorneys, not bankruptcy petition preparers, can give you legal advice.'.
    "(c) Except to the extent the debt relief agency provides the required information itself after reasonably diligent inquiry of the assisted person or others so as to obtain such information reasonably accurately for inclusion on the petition, schedules or statement of financial affairs, a debt relief agency providing bankruptcy assistance to an assisted person, to the extent permitted by nonbankruptcy law, shall provide each assisted person at the time required for the notice required under subsection (a)(1) reasonably sufficient information (which shall be provided in a clear and conspicuous writing) to the assisted person on how to provide all the information the assisted person is required to provide under this title pursuant to section 521, including—
      "(1) how to value assets at replacement value, determine current monthly income, the amounts specified in section 707(b)(2) and, in a chapter 13 case, how to determine disposable income in accordance with section 707(b)(2) and related calculations;
      "(2) how to complete the list of creditors, including how to determine what amount is owed and what address for the creditor should be shown; and
      "(3) how to determine what property is exempt and how to value exempt property at replacement value as defined in section 506.
    "(d) A debt relief agency shall maintain a copy of the notices required under subsection (a) of this section for 2 years after the date on which the notice is given the assisted person.".

    (b)  CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—The table of sections for chapter 5 of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 227, is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 526 the following:
      "527. Disclosures.".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 229. REQUIREMENTS FOR DEBT RELIEF AGENCIES.

    (a) ENFORCEMENT.—Subchapter II of chapter 5 of title 11, United States Code, as amended by sections 227 and 228, is amended by adding at the end the following:

"Sec. 528. Requirements for debt relief agencies

    "(a) A debt relief agency shall—
      "(1) not later than 5 business days after the first date on which such agency provides any bankruptcy assistance services to an assisted person, but prior to such assisted person's petition under this title being filed, execute a written contract with such assisted person that explains clearly and conspicuously—
        "(A) the services such agency will provide to such assisted person; and
        "(B) the fees or charges for such services, and the terms of payment;
      "(2) provide the assisted person with a copy of the fully executed and completed contract;
      "(3) clearly and conspicuously disclose in any advertisement of bankruptcy assistance services or of the benefits of bankruptcy directed to the general public (whether in general media, seminars or specific mailings, telephonic or electronic messages, or otherwise) that the services or benefits are with respect to bankruptcy relief under this title; and
      "(4) clearly and conspicuously use the following statement in such advertisement: "We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code." or a substantially similar statement.

    "(b)(1) An advertisement of bankruptcy assistance services or of the benefits of bankruptcy directed to the general public includes—

      "(A) descriptions of bankruptcy assistance in connection with a chapter 13 plan whether or not chapter 13 is specifically mentioned in such advertisement; and

      "(B) statements such as 'federally supervised repayment plan' or 'Federal debt restructuring help' or other similar statements that could lead a reasonable consumer to believe that debt counseling was being offered when in fact the services were directed to providing bankruptcy assistance with a chapter 13 plan or other form of bankruptcy relief under this title.

    "(2) An advertisement, directed to the general public, indicating that the debt relief agency provides assistance with respect to credit defaults, mortgage foreclosures, eviction proceedings, excessive debt, debt collection pressure, or inability to pay any consumer debt shall—

      "(A) disclose clearly and conspicuously in such advertisement that the assistance may involve bankruptcy relief under this title; and

      "(B) include the following statement: 'We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.' or a substantially similar statement.".

    (b)  CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—The table of sections for chapter 5 of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 227 and 228, is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 527, the following:
      "528. Requirements for debt relief agencies.".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 230. GAO STUDY.

    (a) STUDY.—Not later than 270 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General of the United States shall conduct a study of the feasibility, effectiveness, and cost of requiring trustees appointed under title 11, United States Code, or the bankruptcy courts, to provide to the Office of Child Support Enforcement promptly after the commencement of cases by debtors who are individuals under such title, the names and social security account numbers of such debtors for the purposes of allowing such Office to determine whether such debtors have outstanding obligations for child support (as determined on the basis of information in the Federal Case Registry or other national database).

    (b)  REPORT.—Not later than 300 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General shall submit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives a report containing the results of the study required by subsection (a).

 

 


SEC. 231. PROTECTION OF PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION.

    (a) LIMITATION.—Section 363(b)(1) of title 11, United States Code, is amended by striking the period at the end and inserting the following:
    ", except that if the debtor in connection with offering a product or a service discloses to an individual a policy prohibiting the transfer of personally identifiable information about individuals to persons that are not affiliated with the debtor and if such policy is in effect on the date of the commencement of the case, then the trustee may not sell or lease personally identifiable information to any person unless—
      "(A) such sale or such lease is consistent with such policy; or
      "(B) after appointment of a consumer privacy ombudsman in accordance with section 332, and after notice and a hearing, the court approves such sale or such lease—
        "(i) giving due consideration to the facts, circumstances, and conditions of such sale or such lease; and
        "(ii) finding that no showing was made that such sale or such lease would violate applicable nonbankruptcy law.".

    (b)  DEFINITION.—Section 101 of title 11, United States Code, is amended by inserting after paragraph (41) the following:
      "(41A) 'personally identifiable information' means—
        "(A) if provided by an individual to the debtor in connection with obtaining a product or a service from the debtor primarily for personal, family, or household purposes—
          "(i) the first name (or initial) and last name of such individual, whether given at birth or time of adoption, or resulting from a lawful change of name;
          "(ii) the geographical address of a physical place of residence of such individual;
          "(iii) an electronic address (including an e-mail address) of such individual;
          "(iv) a telephone number dedicated to contacting such individual at such physical place of residence;
          "(v) a social security account number issued to such individual; or
          "(vi) the account number of a credit card issued to such individual; or
        "(B) if identified in connection with 1 or more of the items of information specified in subparagraph (A)—
          "(i) a birth date, the number of a certificate of birth or adoption, or a place of birth; or
          "(ii) any other information concerning an identified individual that, if disclosed, will result in contacting or identifying such individual physically or electronically;".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 232. CONSUMER PRIVACY OMBUDSMAN.

    (a) CONSUMER PRIVACY OMBUDSMAN.—Title 11 of the United States Code is amended by inserting after section 331 the following:

"Sec. 332. Consumer privacy ombudsman

    "(a) If a hearing is required under section 363(b)(1)(B), the court shall order the United States trustee to appoint, not later than 5 days before the commencement of the hearing, 1 disinterested person (other than the United States trustee) to serve as the consumer privacy ombudsman in the case and shall require that notice of such hearing be timely given to such ombudsman.
    "(b) The consumer privacy ombudsman may appear and be heard at such hearing and shall provide to the court information to assist the court in its consideration of the facts, circumstances, and conditions of the proposed sale or lease of personally identifiable information under section 363(b)(1)(B). Such information may include presentation of—
      "(1) the debtor's privacy policy;
      "(2) the potential losses or gains of privacy to consumers if such sale or such lease is approved by the court;
      "(3) the potential costs or benefits to consumers if such sale or such lease is approved by the court; and
      "(4) the potential alternatives that would mitigate potential privacy losses or potential costs to consumers.
    "(c) A consumer privacy ombudsman shall not disclose any personally identifiable information obtained by the ombudsman under this title.".

    (b)  COMPENSATION OF CONSUMER PRIVACY OMBUDSMAN.—Section 330(a)(1) of title 11, United States Code, is amended in the matter preceding subparagraph (A), by inserting "a consumer privacy ombudsman appointed under section 332," before "an examiner".

    (c) CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—The table of sections for subchapter II of chapter 3 of title 11, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
      "332. Consumer privacy ombudsman.".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 233. PROHIBITION ON DISCLOSURE OF NAME OF MINOR CHILDREN.

    (a) PROHIBITION.—Title 11 of the United States Code, as amended by section 106, is amended by inserting after section 111 the following:

"Sec. 112. Prohibition on disclosure of name of minor children

    "The debtor may be required to provide information regarding a minor child involved in matters under this title but may not be required to disclose in the public records in the case the name of such minor child. The debtor may be required to disclose the name of such minor child in a nonpublic record that is maintained by the court and made available by the court for examination by the United States trustee, the trustee, and the auditor (if any) serving under section 586(f) of title 28, in the case. The court, the United States trustee, the trustee, and such auditor shall not disclose the name of such minor child maintained in such nonpublic record.".

    (b)  CLERICAL AMENDMENT.—The table of sections for chapter 1 of title 11, United States Code, as amended by section 106, is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 111 the following:
      "112. Prohibition on disclosure of name of minor children.".

    (c) CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—Section 107(a) of title 11, United States Code, is amended by inserting "and subject to section 112" after "section".

 

 

 

 

 

 


SEC. 234. PROTECTION OF PERSONAL INFORMATION.

    (a) Restriction of Public Access to Certain Information Contained in Bankruptcy Case Files.—Section 107 of title 11, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

    "(c)(1) The bankruptcy court, for cause, may protect an individual, with respect to the following types of information to the extent the court finds that disclosure of such information would create undue risk of identity theft or other unlawful injury to the individual or the individual's property:

      "(A) Any means of identification (as defined in section 1028(d) of title 18) contained in a paper filed, or to be filed, in a case under this title.

      "(B) Other information contained in a paper described in subparagraph (A).

    "(2) Upon ex parte application demonstrating cause, the court shall provide access to information protected pursuant to paragraph (1) to an entity acting pursuant to the police or regulatory power of a domestic governmental unit.

    "(3) The United States trustee, bankruptcy administrator, trustee, and any auditor serving under section 586(f) of title 28—

      "(A) shall have full access to all information contained in any paper filed or submitted in a case under this title; and

      "(B) shall not disclose information specifically protected by the court under this title.".

    (b)  Security of Social Security Account Number of Debtor in Notice to Creditor.—Section 342(c) of title 11, United States Code, is amended—

      (1) by inserting "last 4 digits of the" before "taxpayer identification number"; and

      (2) by adding at the end the following: "If the notice concerns an amendment that adds a creditor to the schedules of assets and liabilities, the debtor shall include the full taxpayer identification number in the notice sent to that creditor, but the debtor shall include only the last 4 digits of the taxpayer identification number in the copy of the notice filed with the court.".

    (c) Conforming Amendment.—Section 107(a) of title 11, United States Code, is amended by striking "subsection (b)," and inserting "subsections (b) and (c),".

 

 

 

 


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