Individuals and businesses do not have to abide by a deadline to file for bankruptcy.
There are also no rules that set a minimum waiting period between bankruptcy filings, but you might not be eligible to receive another debt discharge in multiple cases filed within a certain time frame, depending on the bankruptcy chapter you file under. A bankruptcy lawyer from our firm can explain your legal options and advise when you can file for bankruptcy, including which chapters to file under.
How Often Can You File for Bankruptcy?
While there is no mandatory period between bankruptcy filings, there are certain limitations set in place to prevent people from becoming serial filers and abusing the bankruptcy system.
The United States Courts handles all bankruptcy cases and ensures that eligible people get the debt relief they need.
You Can File for Bankruptcy More than Once
If you need to file for bankruptcy more than once, you may have legal options to do so. Our legal team can review your case and identify whether:
- You qualify to file again under a different bankruptcy chapter
- Enough time has passed so that you are eligible for another debt discharge by filing the same bankruptcy chapter
- You qualify for the automatic stay, which can protect your assets during your case
- Other court orders or factors might delay your bankruptcy filing
Whether or not you have filed for bankruptcy before, our legal team can assist you with your case and help you begin the bankruptcy process right away. We will alert you of paperwork requirements and deadlines you must abide by as well.
Can You File Under the Same Chapter?
Yes. However, there are waiting periods you will have to follow if you want to receive a debt discharge. These windows vary on the bankruptcy chapter you file under.
Per the U.S. Courts, some of the waiting periods include:
- Chapter 7 bankruptcy: You must wait eight years to file under Chapter 7 again and receive a debt discharge.
- Chapter 13 bankruptcy: You must wait two years before you can receive a Chapter 13 discharge.
These are general standards, but exceptions do apply if you have filed under a separate chapter. For example, if you filed and completed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy within six years prior to filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you may be denied a Chapter 7 discharge.
Because bankruptcy law and rules can get complex, you may want to consider hiring a lawyer from our team to guide you through this process and handle the paperwork for you. Our experienced team can make sure you meet all the requirements necessary to successfully get debt relief.
Can I File under Different Chapters?
Yes. The U.S. government recognizes that life can go through unexpected financial obstacles in people’s ways, so there are various options to manage your debt and even pursue debt relief.
Most individuals file under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, but these chapters have significant differences. Our team can advise you on which chapter to file under based on your income, personal assets, and ability to make debt payments. Some key differences to note are:
- Chapter 7 bankruptcy allows you to eliminate your debts due to your financial income, as in you do not make enough money and are not expected to make enough money to pay off your debts.
- If you do not meet the income requirements for Chapter 7, you can file for Chapter 13, which offers to reduce your debts and follow a payment plan.
If you own a struggling business, you may opt to file under Chapter 11 instead of Chapter 7 or 13, as this chapter focuses on business reorganizations.
Are there Consequences for Filing Bankruptcy?
While filing for bankruptcy can help you eliminate your debts, you should know that some negative consequences come with filing for bankruptcy. Filing for bankruptcy can:
- Negatively affect your credit score
- Raise your insurance rates, such as for home insurance
- Make it difficult for you to take out loans in the near future
Our team can work with you to determine your best financial options and discuss the terms with them.
Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, Can Help You File for Bankruptcy
If your debts have become too much for you to handle and you are worried about maintaining your finances, filing for bankruptcy may be an option for you. You can speak with one of our team members at Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, in a free consultation and discuss your financial concerns.
Our team may suggest filing for Chapter 7, Chapter 13, or Chapter 11 bankruptcy, depending on your financial circumstances. Call (828) 286-3866 today to start the bankruptcy filing process.