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.
What Are The Time Limits
The type of bankruptcy filed in the previous case determines the time limit between cases. The time starts to run on the date the prior case is filed with the bankruptcy court. The date the discharge was entered doesnât matter.Â;
Chapter 7 bankruptcy â¡ï¸ Chapter 7 bankruptcy: 8 years
This is the longest amount of time between cases required by the Bankruptcy Code. Chapter 7 provides the quickest form of debt relief through a bankruptcy filing and doesnât require the filer to complete a repayment plan before getting their bankruptcy discharge.
Chapter 7 bankruptcy â¡ï¸ Chapter 13 bankruptcy: 4 years
It is possible to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy soon after receiving a Chapter 7 discharge, the filer just wonât be eligible to receive a Chapter 13 discharge in the second case. So, someone who successfully discharges their unsecured debts through Chapter 7 can file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy to pay off tax debts or other types of debt that survived the prior case.Â;
Chapter 13 bankruptcy â¡ï¸ Chapter 7 bankruptcy: 6 years
This waiting period can be waived if you paid back 100% to your unsecured creditors in your Chapter 13 plan and the original case was found to be in good faith. Plus, since a Chapter 13 repayment plan can take up to 5 years to complete before resulting in a discharge, itâs possible to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy about 1 year after receiving a Chapter 13 discharge.Â;
Chapter 13 bankruptcy â¡ï¸ Chapter 13 bankruptcy: 2 years
Can A Bankruptcy Attorney Help Me File Bankruptcy Sooner
A bankruptcy attorney canât help you get around the time limits, but they may be able to help you file a different type of bankruptcy than the one you filed before and confirm the earliest date your second case can be filed. This is especially true if you filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy but didnât get a discharge. Only aÂ; bankruptcy lawyer can give you legal advice about how soon your second bankruptcy can be filed. They can also help you get a court order to make sure your automatic stay doesnât expire before your discharge is entered.Â;
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How Many Times Can I File For Bankruptcy
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How Many Times Can I File For Bankruptcy?
For most individuals, filing bankruptcy is a once in a lifetime event. However, some people experience more than one severe financial crisis in their lifetime that leaves them unable to pay their bills. Multiple financial hardships can result in the need for multiple bankruptcy filings, even for someone who has planned for financial emergencies.
There is nothing to be ashamed of if you need to file bankruptcy again. However, you need to understand the law regarding multiple bankruptcy filings so that you dont waste your time and money filing bankruptcy cases what dont result in a bankruptcy discharge.
Bankruptcy Filings vs. Bankruptcy Discharges
The law doesnt prohibit filing multiple bankruptcy cases. In fact, you can file bankruptcy again immediately after your first bankruptcy case is closed. However, you will not be entitled to a bankruptcy discharge.
While the Bankruptcy Code does not limit the number of bankruptcy filings you may file within a certain period, it does limit the number of bankruptcy discharges you may have in a certain period. The ultimate goal of filing a bankruptcy case is to obtain a bankruptcy discharge. Without the discharge, there is no benefit in filing a bankruptcy case because you will still owe the debt when the case is closed.
Why Is a Bankruptcy Discharge Important?
We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for relief under the Bankruptcy Code.
How Often Can You Declare Bankruptcy
Though its not advised to declare bankruptcy as often as you might want, unless a court has ordered otherwise, there are no restrictions for how many bankruptcy cases you are able to file.
There are certain time requirements for discharging debt though which is the main function and reason for filing for bankruptcy. Your ability to file another bankruptcy and thus receive a discharge are dependent on these things:
- the type of bankruptcy you have previously filed
- the type of bankruptcy you are seeking to file
- how your previous bankruptcy was finalized: either through discharge, dismissal, or dismissal with prejudice
- when you previously filed.
Below we discuss some specifics of the above requirements.
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Filing Chapter 7 After Receiving A Discharge In A Pennsylvania Chapter 13 Case
If your previous bankruptcy was a Chapter 13 case and you received a discharge, you need to wait at least six years from the filing date to file a Chapter 7. Only then will you be eligible for a discharge. In many cases, this is not that long of a wait. Because a Chapter 13 bankruptcy typically takes five years to complete.
However, there is an exception to this rule. If you paid all of your creditors in full through your Chapter 13 bankruptcy plan, you could file a Chapter 7 case immediately. Additionally, if you paid 70% or more owed to your unsecured creditors and the court deemed that your effort was in good faith, you do not have to wait six years to be eligible for a Chapter 7 discharge.
The above limitations only apply if you received a discharge in your Chapter 13 cases. If your case was dismissed or if you did not receive a discharge, you could file a Chapter 7 case immediately.
How Often Can You File A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Case In Pennsylvania
Chapter 7 was designed to get folks out of debt quickly and relatively easily. If you pass the means test, own few or no non-exempt assets, and have primarily unsecured debt, you could find yourself debt-free in four or five months. Our experienced Pennsylvania bankruptcy lawyers will help ensure the process runs smoothly.
Under the Bankruptcy Code, there is no limit to the number of Chapter 7 cases an individual is permitted to file. Technically, there is also no time limit between your filings. You could file for bankruptcy as many times and as quickly as you want.
However, there are specific limits to how often you are entitled to a discharge. To obtain another discharge through a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing, you must wait eight years from the filing date of your previous case. It is important to remember that the filing date controls not the discharge date. If you have any questions or concerns regarding a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, call Young, Marr & Associates at 701-6519.
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Pros Of Filing Bankruptcy
One immediate advantage that helps debtors when they file for bankruptcy is the;automatic stay. This motion alerts creditors that they must stop their efforts to collect money from debtors. This stay is what stops creditors from calling you! Under an automatic stay, creditors are not allowed to call, send collection letters, file lawsuits, garnish wages, or seize assets except for in specific situations such as the collection of alimony and child support payments.
The biggest pro of filing bankruptcy is that a court discharges your debts. That means that certain debts will not need to be repaid. This, of course, is dependent on the form of bankruptcy you file: either chapter 7 or chapter 13.
Experienced California Bankruptcy Lawyers
Have you previously filed for bankruptcy relief and are now wondering if you are eligible to file again? The attorneys at Resnik Hayes Moradi LLP can help. Call 344-0043, orcontact our firm online to arrange a free consultation.
Our bankruptcy professionals meet with clients from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Weekend appointments are also available.
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Filing A Chapter 7 Case
If you received a discharge in the first Chapter 7 case, you have to wait eight years from the filing date before you can file another bankruptcy under Chapter 7. If this applies to you, you will have to consider filing under Chapter 13.
If you received a discharge in a prior Chapter 13 case, the time limit depends on whether you paid back more than 70% of your unsecured debt in the prior case. If you did, there is no waiting period. If you did not, you have to wait six years after the filing of the prior case.
If you did not receive a discharge, there is no waiting period. You can file at any time .
Filing Under Different Chapters: The Order Matters
Here are the waiting periods when a second bankruptcy case is a different chapter than the one you received your first discharge in.
Chapter 13 before Chapter 7
- If the court granted your first discharge under Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you’d need to wait six years before filing for a Chapter 7 discharge. You won’t have to wait that long; however, if you paid unsecured creditors in full in the Chapter 13 case, or if you paid at least 70% of the claims, the plan was proposed in good faith and was represented your best effort.
Chapter 7 before Chapter 13
- If the court granted your first discharge under Chapter 7, you’d have to wait four years from the Chapter 7 filing date before filing a Chapter 13 case.
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Time Period Between Bankruptcy Discharges
|4 years||2 years|
Filing Dates Control:;All time periods start and end on the bankruptcy petition filing date for each case, except for cases converted from one chap ter to another.;The discharge date is always irrelevant.; ;
Consecutive Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Cases:
If the debtor receives a Chapter 7 discharge in the first case,;he/she will not be able to receive a discharge in a;subsequently filed Chapter 7 case unless at least 8 years pass;between the filing of the bankruptcy petition in the first and;second case.
Consecutive Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Cases:
If the debtor receives a Chapter 13 discharge in the first case,;he/she will not be able to receive a discharge in a;subsequently filed Chapter 13 case unless at least 2 years;pass between the filing of the bankruptcy petition in the first;and second case.
Chapter 7 Followed by a Chapter 13:
If the;debtor receives a Chapter 7 discharge in the first case,;and the second case is a Chapter 13 case, he/she will not be;able to receive a discharge in the Chapter 13 case unless at least;4 years pass between the filing of the bankruptcy petition in;the first and second case.
Chapter 13 Followed by Chapter 7:
If the;debtor receives a Chapter 13 discharge in the first case,;and the second case is a Chapter 7 case, he/she will not be;able to receive a discharge in the Chapter 7 case unless at least;6 years pass between the filing date of the bankruptcy petition;in the first and second case.
Forms Of Bankruptcy To Consider
If youre facing large amounts of debt, have ruled out a workout or are not eligible for a workout, you will want to consider;bankruptcy. Youll also want to have an understanding of the types of bankruptcy available to you.
Most people have heard of Chapter 7, Chapter 13, and Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Since Chapter 11 bankruptcy is usually for businesses, well focus on Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Please do not hesitate to contact us though, if you are interested in learning more about Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which is also known as reorganization bankruptcy.
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Complaints Seeking Revocation Of Discharge Will Require Retaining Counsel
Keep in mind that the mere filing of an adversary proceeding ;seeking to revoke the discharge will require hiring an attorney to answer the allegations of improper conduct. If these allegations are not addressed in a timely fashion, the debtor will lose their discharge by default.
The possibility that a bankruptcy discharge can be revoked highlights the importance of;full disclosure to your bankruptcy attorney. You must inform your bankruptcy attorney of;all assets and debts in order to ensure that your discharge is not subsequently challenged.
Contact Our Pennsylvania Bankruptcy Attorney To Determine If You Are Eligible For A Chapter 7 Discharge
Some people need to fill more than one Chapter 7. Perhaps they received a discharge but later lost their job or had an unexpected medical condition. In other cases, someone might have tried filing themselves, resulting in their case being dismissed for one of many possible reasons. If you need to file another Chapter 7 or have questions about filing another case, contact our experienced Pennsylvania bankruptcy lawyers at Young, Marr & Associates. Call 701-6519 to schedule a free appointment.
Bankruptcy Resource Center
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Bankruptcies Can Be Revoked Seek Legal Advice
Bankruptcy courts have the right to revoke a bankruptcy or discharge. There are specific conditions for the various types of bankruptcy. Chapters 7, 11, 12 and 13 all have their own unique reasons for why they can be revoked.
Revocation of Chapter 7
A trustee, creditor, or the U.S. trustee may submit a request to the bankruptcy court that a discharge or bankruptcy be revoke based on an allegation against the debtor.
Explanations of the Reasons Bankruptcies Can Be Revoked:
If you are considering filing for bankruptcy again, then you should take advice. Youll need to file with the court and must be certain that you are filing correctly and discharges are applicable.
You should also be aware of the With Prejudice rulings, and how they affect your ability to file for bankruptcy.
AllLaw has excellent resources online to help you navigate this tricky legal procedure. They have an interactive calculator that can help you establish the best next step based on the amount of money you owe. Their resource also clearly and simply explains the various types of bankruptcy and what you can do if the court has dismissed a previous case with prejudice.
What If My Previous Case Wasnt Discharged
Sometimes the bankruptcy court dismisses or ends a case without a discharge. That could happen if you failed to appear in court, ignored a court order or voluntarily dismissed your own case because a creditor filed a motion to continue collection efforts. If your case was dismissed, you have to wait 180 days to file again. Note that subsequent filings might not earn you the automatic stay of collection, repossession and foreclosure actions. So you may not be as shielded from creditors pursuing payment.
In other instances, courts can deny the discharge of your debts in a bankruptcy. Reasons for denial include failure to provide documents, hiding assets or perjury.
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Understanding The Types Of Bankruptcy
For individuals and families struggling with financial hardship, there are two main types of bankruptcies: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.
A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is essentially a request for the court to forgive your debts entirely.
If approved, youll be able to walk away from any outstanding, loans, or other financial burdens.
This is ideal for individuals who just want to be able to start over.
However, youll also likely lose most of your personal property.
This is because the court uses that property to help offset the financial loss your creditors face when you walk away from those debts.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy provides you with partial debt forgiveness.
If the court accepts your case, theyll help you create a payment plan to repay some of your debts while forgiving whatevers left at the end of the payment plan.
Every case is different.
The court decides the payments youll have based on your financial situation, total debt, and the information you disclose to the court.
Wages Benefits And Retirement Accounts
Wages that you earned before your filing date but don’t receive until after filing your case are usually only partially protected. Any post-bankruptcy earnings are completely exempt in a Chapter 7 filing.
Welfare benefits and retirement accounts are almost always protected– but only if you list them on your paperwork. Social Security, unemployment benefits, 401, disability benefits, veteran benefits, etc., are all protected by federal law.
However, if you have a lot of money saved in any of these accounts, it might be wise to talk to an attorney.
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