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Russell G. Small and Kenneth Lenz

How often can you file for bankruptcy?

| Sep 15, 2020 | Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Most people are able to come back stronger after filing a bankruptcy case and getting their debts under control, but not everyone is able to maintain the financial stability that they need. Whether it’s because of a medical emergency, job loss or other situation, a second bankruptcy might be needed.

Of course, saying that you need another bankruptcy can be frustrating. You may also not be sure if you can even get another bankruptcy, even though you need it. Fortunately, the rules for bankruptcy are fairly simple, and the timelines are easy to remember.

How often can you file for bankruptcy?

The length of time you have to wait to file a bankruptcy will depend on the kind of bankruptcy you use. If you opt for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, then you will need to wait eight years before you file for bankruptcy again. Of course, that doesn’t mean that you can’t look into other types of bankruptcy.

If you want to choose a Chapter 13 bankruptcy after you’ve gone through a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, then you may only have to wait four years to file.

If you filed for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy to begin with, you’re in a better position to file for a bankruptcy a second time. You can file for a second Chapter 13 bankruptcy just two years after the last one. On the other hand, if you want to file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy following a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, then you will need to wait eight years before doing so.

There are exceptions to the rule, which is something to talk to your attorney about if you need to go into bankruptcy despite having one in the past. For example, if you didn’t get to discharge any debts in your first bankruptcy, then you may be able to file another bankruptcy before the full waiting period is over.

Your attorney can work with you if you believe that you need a bankruptcy and you already have one in your past. Bankruptcy may still be an option for you as you move forward and try to resolve your debts.

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