Chapter 13 Followed By A Chapter :
If you have filed a Chapter 13 and received a discharge, you have to wait at least two years to file Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Again and receive a discharge.
Most cases take between three and five years, so practically, you can immediately file a new Bankruptcy under Chapter 13 as soon as you obtain a discharge in such cases.
How Many Times Can You File For Chapter 13 Bankruptcy In Arkansas
After receiving a Chapter 13 discharge, you must wait 2 years from the date the case was filed in order to file a new Chapter 13 case. In most situations, this means that there is not a waiting period before filing a new case, as Chapter 13 plans are for 3 to 5 year periods. If you have received a Chapter 13 discharge, you must wait six years from the date the Chapter 13 case was filed before a Chapter 7 case may be filed.
As an additional note, the six-year waiting period from the date of filing a Chapter 13 case to a Chapter 7 could be waived if you paid back 100% to your unsecured creditors in your Chapter 13 plan, or if you paid back 70% of unsecured claims and the court found the original case to be in good faith and your best effort.
As you can tell, the time limits are complicated, and if youre not careful, you could find yourself unable to file when you need it most. Let the experienced team at Natural State Law help guide you through the process. Call 916-2878 today to learn more.
Bankruptcy Filing Vs Discharge
As we have explained, there is no limit on the number of times a person or a business can file for Chapter 7, Chapter 11, or Chapter 13 bankruptcies. To be clear, bankruptcy itself is merely a filing process with the Federal District Bankruptcy Court which opens up your case including your assets, debts, liabilities, and inability to pay for review.
However, in all but a few cases, a bankruptcy filing also generates something called an automatic stay from creditors, meaning that after you file bankruptcy in federal court, your creditors are legally prevented for a certain amount of time from pursuing you in the state courts for failure to pay your debts. An automatic stay is like a shield, preventing creditors from suing you while the bankruptcy trustee and judge work together to assess your case.
Different from a bankruptcy filing, which happens at the beginning of your case, is a bankruptcy discharge, which happens at the end of your case. Discharge means that the court has reviewed your financial situation, determined you are unable to pay some or all of your debts and discharged your obligation to pay them.
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How Many Times Can You File Bankruptcy In Texas
If youre weighing your options regarding filing bankruptcy in Texas, you may be wondering
- How many times can I file bankruptcy?
- What if I need to do this more than once?
- Will one bankruptcy be enough to help me bail myself out?
- What if I need a second, or even a third, fresh start?
Filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy involves an individual person filing a case in federal court, and working with a specially-appointed, specially-qualified trustee in hopes of partially or completely eliminating their otherwise overwhelming debt. A third type of bankruptcy, called Chapter 11 Bankruptcy, is available for businesses. Regarding each of these types of bankruptcy, the Houston bankruptcy attorneys at the Law Offices of Kretzer and Volberding P.C. have expertise in this area of law after years of working with clients seeking a debt-free future.
There is no reason to feel ashamed for filing bankruptcy in fact, the U.S. Courts recently reported that nearly 1 millionAmericans file for bankruptcy every year, with 97% percent of the filers being individuals struggling with consumer debts like credit cards and loans. The same report also noted that Texas four federal judicial Districts are among the top 20 of the nations 94 federal district courts in terms of bankruptcy filings.
Filing For A Second Case Even If You Are Not Entitled To A Discharge
How often you can declare bankruptcy depends on the type of bankruptcy discharge that you have. But you can still file for a second case even if you were not entitled to a discharge on the previous cases that you have filed.
There are instances when filing for bankruptcy can help even if you are not eligible for a discharge. Situations such as being behind on your tax or mortgage payments allow you for an automatic stay. You can take time with a bankruptcy case to catch up on your missed debt payments. The automatic stay is applicable to everyone who wants to file for bankruptcy even if they are unable to get a discharge.
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Role Of The Case Trustee
When a chapter 7 petition is filed, the U.S. trustee appoints an impartial case trustee to administer the case and liquidate the debtor’s nonexempt assets. 11 U.S.C. §§;701, 704. If all the debtor’s assets are exempt or subject to valid liens, the trustee will normally file a “no asset” report with the court, and there will be no distribution to unsecured creditors. Most chapter 7 cases involving individual debtors are no asset cases. But if the case appears to be an “asset” case at the outset, unsecured creditors must file their claims with the court within 90 days after the first date set for the meeting of creditors. Fed. R. Bankr. P. 3002. A governmental unit, however, has 180 days from the date the case is filed to file a claim. 11 U.S.C. §;502. In the typical no asset chapter 7 case, there is no need for creditors to file proofs of claim because there will be no distribution. If the trustee later recovers assets for distribution to unsecured creditors, the Bankruptcy Court will provide notice to creditors and will allow additional time to file proofs of claim. Although a secured creditor does not need to file a proof of claim in a chapter 7 case to preserve its security interest or lien, there may be other reasons to file a claim. A creditor in a chapter 7 case who has a lien on the debtor’s property should consult an attorney for advice.
How To File A Motion To Extend The Automatic Stay
If you want to extend the automatic stay, you must file a motion with the court. In your motion, you’ll explain why your previous bankruptcy was dismissed and why the court should extend the stay in your current case. You’ll have to prove that you filed the subsequent bankruptcy in good faith .
The specific procedures for filing a motion to extend the automatic stay depend on the rules in your jurisdiction. But the following are typically the most common steps you must take:
Find and complete the appropriate forms. Each bankruptcy district has forms for specific motions and notices. Check with your local bankruptcy court to find all paperwork related to motions to extend the automatic stay. But be aware that your jurisdiction may not have a standard form to fill out. In that case, you will have to create the motion and declarations. You can find your court’s website using the Federal Court Finder tool.
Obtain a hearing date and file the motion. In most cases, you will need to obtain a hearing date from the court before filing the motion . Keep in mind that the filer must complete the hearing before the stay expires, so typically you must file your motion immediately after filing your case. You’ll tell the court why your first bankruptcy was dismissed and explain why this case is filed in good faith. Then you’ll serve the paperwork on the bankruptcy trustee and your creditors .
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Is A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Right For Me
In a bankruptcy case under chapter 7, you file a petition asking the court to discharge your debts. The basic idea in a chapter 7 bankruptcy is to wipe out your debts in exchange for your giving up property, except for exempt property which the law allows you to keep.;In most cases, all of your property will be exempt. But property which is not exempt is sold, with the money distributed to creditors. If you want to keep property like a home or a car and are behind on the payments on a mortgage or car loan, a chapter 7 case probably will not be the right choice for you. That is because chapter 7 bankruptcy does not eliminate the right of mortgage holders or car loan creditors to take your property to cover your debt.
Issues With Chapter 7 Conversion
When you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, part of the process will be that the court will officially approve a repayment plan you must follow to receive a final discharge. If you cant agree on a plan that the court will approve, in some cases, you can convert your filing to Chapter 7.
However, if you already filed once, you have these varying time requirements before your second discharge. So, converting a Chapter 13 filing to Chapter 7 can be a problem. You may be past the amount of time required to receive a discharge with Chapter 13, but not long enough to receive a discharge with Chapter 7.
This makes having the right bankruptcy services on your side even more essential on a second bankruptcy, because you may be navigating some tough waters.
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Was Your Bankruptcy Case Dismissed With Prejudice Restrictions
A bankruptcy court can prohibit you from filing another bankruptcy case if the court dismisses your previous bankruptcy with prejudice. Dismissed with Prejudice typically means that you failed to obey the courts orders or tried to abuse the bankruptcy system.
If this happens, a bankruptcy court can prohibit you from filing for another bankruptcy for a longer period of time than those specified above. A court is also able to forever preclude you from discharging debts that might have been discharged in the case that was dismissed with prejudice.
Can I Get A Credit Card After Bankruptcy
Yes, there are several options available. While technically not a credit card you could use a bank or debit card to perform activities for which you normally would use a credit card. You also may be able to keep the credit card you already have if the creditor grants approval. If these options do not work you can get secured credit card which is backed by your own bank account.
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What Are The Most Common Causes Of Bankruptcy
According to theInstitute for Financial Literacy, in 2010, the most common reasons for filing for bankruptcy in the U.S. were:
- Overextended credit: Seriously overextended credit is when your credit is larger than you can repay. Often, this is caused by overspending or being unable to pay your debts.
- Reduced income: Layoffs and job terminations have a huge impact on your income. Even if you find a new source of income, if you spend a long time without being gainfully employed you may not be able to recoup the funds to keep creditors at bay.
- Unexpected expenses: Life can hit you with all kinds of surprises. Unfortunately, if you are not financially prepared for them, you may not be able to keep up with your debt repayments. A study by Harvard University found that the biggest cause of bankruptcy, representing 62% of all personal bankruptcies, is for medical expenses. If you have a sudden illness or injury your medical bills can rack up quickly and may mean you want to file for bankruptcy.
Bankruptcy Is Not A One
For most people, bankruptcy seems like a last-case scenario something you only want to do once in your life, if that. The truth is, though, it is simply a legal tool, and one that can be very beneficial if you find yourself in dire financial straits.
With everything that has happened in the last twelve months, many people are curious as to whether they might be eligible for bankruptcy. Those who have previously filed or had a successful bankruptcy discharge may be concerned about whether they will be eligible to do so again, and what the time frame regarding their right to another filing might be.
Since the goal of bankruptcy is the discharge of debt and the relief from overwhelming financial strain, there are technically no laws regarding how many times a person can seek this relief during their lifetime. When it comes down to it, the question is less of how many times you can file for bankruptcy, but how many times and how often you can receive a discharge of your debts.
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Exceptions To The Rules
There are exceptions to the guidelines above, however. For example, time requirements may be reduced if you paid 100 percent of unsecured claims in your Chapter 12 or 13 bankruptcies. On the other hand, Chapter 11 and 12 guidelines might not be as easy and straightforward as stated above if you violated a court order or had a case dismissed during the 180 days preceding your bankruptcy filing. In either of these situations, you may not immediately qualify for another discharge.
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Where Can You Look For Advice On Filing For Bankruptcy
- AllLaw: is a free online resource that aims to help users in all their legal needs. They have a large amount of information covering bankruptcy, the types of bankruptcy, and how to file for bankruptcy. They can also help you find an expert attorney in your area who can assist you in filing for bankruptcy in the correct and most beneficial way.
- Bankruptcy Options Center: This is a free online resource that helps visitors establish what the available bankruptcy options are.
- Debt.org: An organization that aims to help Americans who are struggling with debt. They provide information on debt consolidation, settlement, student loans, bankruptcy and mortgages.
- LegalZoom: This is an online legal technology company. They help users create legal documents without the help of an attorney and have some great resources to help you understand the law. LegalZoom has a section of its site dedicated to bankruptcy.
All these sources confirm that you can file for bankruptcy as often as you want. But this doesnt mean that your debt will always be wiped clean. You need a discharge from the court to relieve you from your obligation to pay a debt but receiving this will depend upon the type of bankruptcy you file for.
If your aim is to wipe the slate clean and start again, what you should really be asking is not how often you can file for bankruptcy, but how often you can be discharged.
Consider The Cons Of Double Filing
If you file too soon, you cannot legally have another debt discharge until the time limits have passed, so the process could waste your time and money.
Furthermore, if a judge finds that you have filed again “in bad faith,” they will stop your automatic stay , unless you can provide clear and convincing evidence that you filed in good faith. They might even throw your case out.
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Will Bankruptcy Wipe Out All My Debts
A Bankruptcy will not eliminate all debts. For example, these debts will not be discharged in a bankruptcy if:
money owed for child support or alimony, fines, and some taxes; debts not listed on your bankruptcy petition; loans you got by knowingly giving false information to a creditor, who reasonably relied on it in making you the loan; debts resulting from willful and malicious harm; student loans owed to a school or government body, except if: the court decides that payment would be an undue hardship; mortgages and other liens which are not paid in the bankruptcy case .
Is Filing Bankruptcy Twice Bad
Filing multiple bankruptcies is certainly not ideal, lets put it that way. Anyone who got into such serious debt problems that bankruptcy was necessary once may have repeated the same mistakes and chose to file a second time.
However, there are times when a second filing is necessary, and important. Those who have worked out a plan and approach with their attorney, financial adviser or credit counselor may find bankruptcy the best option for dealing with a bad financial situation.
Its important to know the consequences of bankruptcy when considering whether you should file bankruptcy a second time. There will be ramifications on your credit score and credit report, but leaving debt unpaid also will hurt the financial status.
If the approach is well thought out, the second filing may turn out to be a good thing because it will allow for a fresh start and the ability to move forward from the crushing burden of debt.
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