The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, which covers Hampton Roads cities including Virginia Beach VA, Norfolk VA, Portsmouth VA, Chesapeake VA, Suffolk VA, Hampton VA and Newport News VA, has enabled electronic noticing for bankruptcy debtors. The court now offers debtors the opportunity, pursuant to Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 9036, to request delivery by email, rather than by U.S. mail, of court-generated notices and orders that have been filed by the court, through a program called Debtor Electronic Bankruptcy Noticing, also known as DeBN, a Bankruptcy Noticing Center (“BNC”) program.
DeBN has several advantages for for debtors in bankruptcy because it is faster than regular mail. Debtors will receive court-generated notices and orders the same day they are filed by the court. DeBN allows convenient access to court-generated notices and orders from a computer or mobile device that has an internet connection. Notices generated through DeBN makes it easier to store court-generated notices and orders on a computer and that means never losing a paper copy and being able to view the notices an unlimited number of times.
Activating a DeBN account is easy and starts with a debtor completing the Debtor’s Electronic Bankruptcy Noticing Request (DeBN) form. The form should be completed, printed, signed, and filed with the court at the clerk’s office in the division location where the bankruptcy case is filed. The court creates a DeBN account for debtors who have made the request. Debtors can file a DeBN request form in one of three ways:
- Through an attorney electronically
- Through the U.S. mail
- By bringing the completed form to the court clerk’s office in the division location where the bankruptcy case is filed
Once a completed and signed DeBN request form has been filed and a DeBN account has been created, debtors will receive a confirmation email from the BNC. From that point forward, all future court-generated notices and orders will be delivered by the BNC to debtors via email, as long as the bankruptcy case name and address match the DeBN account name and address, and there are no email transmission failures. In the event of a change in email address, debtors must file an updated DeBN request form, or there will be an undeliverable email bounce-back, and the DeBN account automatically will be disabled. When a court-generated notice or order is sent to the BNC for service upon debtors, the BNC will email the notice to debtors at the end of the day. The court-generated notice or order will be emailed as a single PDF attachment, and a separate email will be sent for each notice or order that has been so filed.