Effect of Prior Case
If you have filed a previous bankruptcy case, your ability to file now may be affected. The exact impact can be quite complicated, and you should consult a local, experienced bankruptcy attorney to determine exactly how a prior case impacts you. If you received a discharge in a previous Chapter 7 case, you are not eligible to be discharged in a new Chapter 7 case filed within eight years of the filing date of the previous case. You cannot receive a discharge in a Chapter 13 case filed within four years of the filing date of the previous Chapter 7. If you received a discharge in a previous Chapter 13 case, you are not eligible to be discharged in a new Chapter 7 case filed within six years of the filing date of the previous case (certain exceptions apply). You cannot receive a discharge in a Chapter 13 case filed within two years of the filing date of the previous Chapter 13. Of course, since most Chapter 13 cases last more than two years before discharge is issued, typically there is no delay in filing a new Chapter 13. If you filed a case that was dismissed without discharge, and the date of the dismissal order was within the past one year, protection from creditors may be limited in your new filing. The provisions related to this kind of re-filing are quite complicated, and may require special motions in your new case; you should discuss questions on this issue carefully with your bankruptcy attorney. Even if you are not eligible for discharge, you may still be able to file a Chapter 13 case to stop collection activity and manage debt. This can be particularly helpful where mortgage payments are in default and foreclosure is being scheduled. Again, filing a case under these circumstances should not be considered without the assistance of an experienced bankruptcy lawyer. Please note that this is only an overview. It is not legal advice. And it is not detailed enough to allow you to successfully navigate any bankruptcy filing. You should meet with an experienced bankruptcy attorney to go over the details of your situation, and discuss how bankruptcy may help. Please Contact Us today to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss Chapter 7 or Chapter 13.