How to determine if you can file another bankruptcy after previously having filed a chapter 7 or 13
If you have previously filed a Chapter 7 case?
If you filed a previous Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, you must wait 8 years from the date when you filed your previous Chapter 7 to file a new chapter 7 bankruptcy case. The 8-year time period goes from the date you filed your prior Chapter 7, not the date your last Chapter 7 case was discharged or completed. For example, if you filed a Chapter 7 case on August 15, 2014 and your case was completed on December 15, 2014, you can file a new Chapter 7 case anytime after August 15, 2022 (the date the prior case was completed doesn’t matter).
You can file a Chapter 13 case right after your prior Chapter 7 case – there is no minimum waiting period. However, if you file a Chapter 13 case less than 4 years after your prior Chapter 7 case, debts won’t be erased in the Chapter 13 case. But, the Chapter 13 case will still be able to protect you from creditors and garnishments, and stop foreclosures and repossessions. If you file a Chapter 13 case more than 4 years after your prior Chapter 7 case, then your prior Chapter 7 case will have no effect on your Chapter 13 case.
If you have previously filed a Chapter 13 case?
If your prior Chapter 13 case was dismissed or not completed, then you can file a Chapter 7 right away – there is no minimum waiting period. If your prior Chapter 13 case was completed and you received a discharge, you must wait 6 years from when you filed your prior Chapter 13 case to be able to file a Chapter 7 case, unless you paid back at least 70% of your unsecured debt in your prior Chapter 13 case that was completed. The 6-year time period goes from the date you filed your prior Chapter 13, not the date the prior Chapter 13 was discharged and completed.
You can file a Chapter 13 case right after your prior Chapter 13 case – there is no minimum waiting period. If you have had multiple Chapter 13 cases pending in the last 12 months? If you have had 2 or more Chapter 13 cases that were pending in the last 12 months and that were dismissed, you may not be able to get the automatic stay against creditors in your new Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 case. This is a complicated situation, and the outcome will depend on your particular circumstances.
For any questions or help filing a new bankruptcy, please contact our office to speak with Attorney Robert Eder to find out what options are available to you.