The short answer is Yes. The longer answer is while it is possible to file for bankruptcy twice or even more, there is a certain time limit prescribed by the Bankruptcy Code. An expert Cleveland bankruptcy attorney will be able to provide you with the required guidance if you are considering bankruptcy again.
So, how soon you can file for another bankruptcy depends on the kind of bankruptcy (Chapter 7 or 13) you filed earlier and what bankruptcy you will likely file this time around. Another factor that will affect your decision is the result of your previous case – whether it was discharged or dismissed.
If you filed for bankruptcy earlier and it was discharged, you must wait a certain time before filing for bankruptcy again. But, if your bankruptcy is dismissed without discharge, you can file for bankruptcy again without considering the prescribed time limits. However, there are certain regulations that you need to follow when considering this option. It is advisable to discuss all the pros and cons with a trusted Cleveland bankruptcy law firm before taking any decision.
What happens if you file for bankruptcy without waiting out the prescribed duration after the discharge of first bankruptcy? In such a case, you will not get the discharge for your current case and the remaining debts will also continue to survive the bankruptcy. The Bankruptcy Code also specifies rules that need to be followed when considering filing for various types of bankruptcies. Rubinstein Law Firm, a trusted Cleveland bankruptcy law firm can help you comply with all regulations while filing for bankruptcy.
If you filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and received the discharge, you need to wait for a period of eight years from the date of filing the previous bankruptcy to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy again. Should you file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy before this eight-year term, your second bankruptcy will be denied discharge and you will be required to bear legal liability of your outstanding debts.
When considering Chapter 13 bankruptcy after discharge of Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the waiting period is four years from the date of filing the previous bankruptcy. If, however, you file Chapter 13 bankruptcy before this duration, not only the discharge will be denied, but you will also be liable for all debts yourself.
Considering Chapter 7 bankruptcy after discharge of Chapter 13 bankruptcy? Wait for six years from the date of filing the previous Chapter 13 bankruptcy to receive full discharge. The only exception worth consideration is when you have either fully paid your unsecured debts or when you paid about 70% of the unsecured debts and filed a Chapter 13 plan with good intentions and efforts.
To file another Chapter 13 bankruptcy after discharge of previous Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you must wait for two years from the date you filed for your earlier Chapter 13 bankruptcy. If you file prior to this two-year wait period, the discharge of the bankruptcy will be denied, and you will be liable for all the debts unpaid through Chapter 13 bankruptcy.In case you could not complete repayments under your previous Chapter 13 bankruptcy case, you will likely not get a discharge of the debts, unless you request hardship discharge and qualify for it. In such an instance, the case will stand dismissed.
Although any bankruptcy lawyer in Cleveland will tell you it’s not a good idea, some debtors file and dismiss several cases one after the other. This is usually done when a debtor is facing threat to property and files for bankruptcy to avoid foreclosure. Once the threat diminishes, the debtor requests the court to either dismiss the case, or stops making plan payments, which automatically results in dismissal. Now, when the creditor begins chasing the debtor again, the debtor files a new case. To prevent such debtors from mis-using the system, provisions regulating the automatic stay have been incorporated in the Bankruptcy Code.
If you have filed few bankruptcy cases earlier and are considering filing for bankruptcy again, remember your case will be under greater scrutiny by the bankruptcy trustee, the office of the US Trustee, and the creditors to assess if you are trying to mis-use the system. It, therefore, makes sense to consult your bankruptcy Attorney in Cleveland before taking the next steps.