Filing for bankruptcy once is enough of a hardship for you and your family. No matter how hard you tried, though, you weren’t able to get back onto your feet and keep your finances in check. When that happens, you might think that you need to file for bankruptcy again.
You might be able to reevaluate and determine that you’re okay and don’t need to file again. But if you don’t have any other options to help you out financially, you could need to file for bankruptcy a second time. There are limits to filing that you’ll need to know before you try to file again, which is why we’re here to help.
Hiring a bankruptcy lawyer can be incredibly beneficial in a time like this. They can guide you through the process and ensure that you are making the right choice for your financial needs. Let’s take a look at what happens when you file bankruptcy more than once.
Filing Another Bankruptcy Application
You might not have known that you can file for bankruptcy more than just once. Actually, you can file as many times as you like, as long as it’s within the limits set up by the law. The main reason you might file again is for debt discharge or cancelling your debts from bankruptcy. But you have to be aware of the timelines that exist for you to file within those parameters.
When you file for bankruptcy and receive a discharge of your debts, that’s when you have to pay attention to these timelines put in place. Even though your debts were cleared after your first filing, you might have accrued more debts that you cannot pay back and need discharged.
If you didn’t have your debts discharged, or if you’re not filing again for the purpose of clearing your debts, then you don’t have to worry about timelines and can file for bankruptcy again at any time. But if your goal is to clear your debts again after already having them discharged, then you need to know how long to wait.
Here is how long you’ll have to wait to file again depending on what you’ve already filed and gotten debt discharge from.
After Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy
If you effectively filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and received debt discharge, then you must wait 8 years until you can file for that same type of bankruptcy again. You must wait the full eight years or else your application will be denied.
After you’ve filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and receive debt discharge, you might be interested in filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy this time around. To do this, you must wait four years from the date you filed.
After Filing Chapter 13 Bankruptcy
Similarly, after you decide to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you might need your debts discharged again and are interested in filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy again. When your debts have already been discharged once from Chapter 13, and you want to file for this again, you have to wait two years from when you filed the first time in order to get relief again.
If you filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, got your debts cleared, and are now interested in filling for Chapter 7 bankruptcy this time, then you have to wait six years from the date you filed for Chapter 13. Just like for any other of these filings, if you file before the necessary time has elapsed, your claim will be denied.
Results of Filing More Than Once
For the most part, the consequences of filing for bankruptcy remain the same as your first filing. This means that if you carefully considered filing the first time, then choosing to file again will have the same financial results as before.
However, if you’re filing as an attempt to evade a creditor you’re in debt to as an attempt to extend the time you have before they collect what they’re owed, then your repeat filing can be considered abusive. This process is frowned upon and can lead to the courts dismissing your case.
Belsky & Horowitz, LLC Will Help You
Filing for bankruptcy once is intimidating enough, and when you think you might have to file again you could be feeling the same pressures and confusion. Thankfully, there are people here to help you, which is where we come in. At Belsky & Horowitz, we’re prepared to help you through this process so that you can feel confident and don’t have any unanswered questions.
A bankruptcy lawyer from our firm in Baltimore is experienced with these cases and knows that you need your claim to follow all the regulations in place. Reach out to our office today so that we can guide you through this confusing process and get started on your claim right away.
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