Helping With Your Financial Future

Can you file for bankruptcy more than once?

On Behalf of | Aug 9, 2022 | Chapter 11 Bankruptcy, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Filing for bankruptcy may be an effective way to eliminate or reorganize debts without losing property such as a California home. There is no limit to the number of times that you can file for protection from creditors. However, you may be subject to a waiting period after a case is discharged or dismissed.

Waiting periods vary depending on the type of proceeding

You must wait at least eight years from the date of a Chapter 7 discharge before you can file for liquidation bankruptcy again. The law only requires you to wait six years to file for Chapter 7 protection after a Chapter 13 case is discharged. If you received a discharge in a Chapter 13 case, you have to wait two years to seek another reorganization bankruptcy. You must wait four years after a Chapter 13 discharge to seek a liquidation bankruptcy.

What happens if your case is dismissed?

If your Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 proceeding is dismissed, you’ll typically need to wait at least 180 days before you can refile. There is also a chance that you won’t receive an automatic stay if you do decide to file again after a dismissal. Cases may be thrown out because of a failure to appear in court, to provide documents or because you ignored any other court orders.

Filing for bankruptcy generally means receiving a stay of creditor collection activity such as a lawsuit or repossession. It may also put a stop to creditor phone calls or letters, which may reduce the stress of having unpaid bills or other balances. After a case is dismissed, unsecured debts may be completely eliminated. However, secured lenders may be allowed to commence with a foreclosure or repossession if you’re still behind on a mortgage or auto loan.