When can you file for bankruptcy after a previous discharge?

On Behalf of | Mar 9, 2022 | Bankruptcy Law, Chapter 13, Chapter 7 |

When an individual files for personal bankruptcy, the impact of the filing can help their financial circumstances. The courts issue an automatic stay at the time of filing that stops a creditor lawsuit or prevent the repossession or foreclosure of financed property.

After the courts approve the bankruptcy, the remaining balance of specific unsecured debts will be eligible for discharge. The person who filed will no longer need to repay those debts or be subject to collection activity for those specific debts.

For those struggling financially because of health issues or other long-term problems, a second bankruptcy is sometimes required. Can you file for bankruptcy again after a previous successful filing?

Yes, individuals can file for bankruptcy more than once

Federal laws do limit what kind of bankruptcy you can file based on your economic circumstances and also how frequently you can file. The type of bankruptcy that you previously filed and the kind you want to file this time will determine how long you need to wait after your discharge to file again.

Someone who previously filed for Chapter 7 or liquidation bankruptcy and wants to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy again must wait eight years after their prior case was filed. If someone with a prior Chapter 7 filing wants to pursue a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, they must wait for four years.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy takes longer because it requires a structured repayment period prior to the discharge of the remaining unsecured debts. After a previous Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you need to wait two years to file for Chapter 13 proceedings again. If you qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy this time, you will need to wait six years after a Chapter 13 discharge.

Making the most of your bankruptcy

If you have already been through the bankruptcy process once, you know what to expect to a certain degree. However, if your first bankruptcy did not fully resolve all of your financial issues, you may need to pay close attention to detail with this filing.

Getting the right support during your personal bankruptcy can make it a more permanent solution that reduces your likelihood of needing debt relief again in the future.


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