Bankruptcy filings are a matter of public record, and anyone can obtain copies. Federal courts, which are divided into regions, handle bankruptcies. Information about bankruptcies filed in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland is stored by the National Archives Trust Fund for the Mid-Atlantic region in Philadelphia. To obtain records on a discharged bankruptcy in Maryland, you first must contact Maryland courts to get certain information.
Obtain the bankruptcy case number if you don't already have it. To do so, call the court in Baltimore at 410-962-2688 or the court in Greenbelt, Maryland, at 301-344-8018 and provide the name of the debtor and the city in which the case was filed. If possible, get the box, location and transfer numbers of the case records as well. These are numbers assigned to court documents when they are moved and archived so they are easier to find.
Visit the National Archives Trust Fund Board's website and print a copy of Form 90, “Order for Copies of Bankruptcy Cases.”
Complete the form as thoroughly as possible. Forms that don't contain all the requested information may be returned to you.
Complete the credit card information section of the form or write a check or money order payable to "National Archives Trust Fund” for the appropriate fee amount. As of May 2010, specific case documents, including the “Discharge of Debtor,” cost $25. Entire case files cost $70. Certified copies and copies to be sent via Federal Express require additional fees.
Mail the check and completed form to: NARA Mid Atlantic Region 14700 Townsend Road Philadelphia, PA 19154
- You may be able to get information on some bankruptcy cases electronically by joining the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system. This option is less expensive, but the PACER system does not include as many cases as the National Archives Trust.
- purse with magnifier image by Oleg Kulakov from Fotolia.com