Can You File Bankruptcy Twice?

File for Bankruptcy Can You File Bankruptcy Twice?

Can You File Bankruptcy Twice?

Have you had to file for bankruptcy before? Life isn't always fair, and there is a possibility for you to file for bankruptcy twice as long as you qualify. DoNotPay can make it easier this time.

Even when we take our credit counseling seriously from the first bankruptcy, there are times when life gets in the way and you find yourself once again buried in debt. If it has been a while since your last bankruptcy and subsequent discharge of debt, you will recognize that a lot of things have remained the same. There is still a lot of paperwork to do, you will still have to answer a court trustee, and you will still have to go through the courts and give it time before you see your credit score start to go up again. Once again, as long as you qualify, there is a possibility that you may be able to successfully file for bankruptcy a second time.

The time before you are allowed to file for bankruptcy again is dependent on whether your first bankruptcy was a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13, and the length of time since then. Since you are already aware of the weight of the decision as well as the costs for filing for bankruptcy again, then you are probably in a better mental place than you were when you approached it the first time. When it comes to the filing part, there are options that make it easier than ever. DoNotPay offers a filing resource that can take a lot of the stress out of the process. First, let's review some of the details about bankruptcy before you find out if you qualify or not.

Bankruptcy Objectives

The primary objective of bankruptcy was originally meant to help creditors. Today's bankruptcy laws look far different from that. 

Bankruptcy law in the United States was put in place for three purposes:

  1. To help solve a collections problem shared by creditors due to the debtor being insolvent,
  2. To give those individual debtors who are overburdened a "fresh start" financially, and
  3. To save those businesses that find themselves in financial distress by reorganizing their debt as opposed to liquidating the business.

Types of Bankruptcy

There are two types of bankruptcy: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13.

Type Of BankruptcyDetails
Chapter 7Chapter 7 bankruptcy, or straight bankruptcy, eliminates the debt of those who cannot afford to pay their debts. By gathering the money from all of the debtors' available assets, the courts will evenly distribute any money between all of the debtors and then discharge the remainder of the debt.
Chapter 13Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a restructuring of debt. Working with the courts and an administrator, a payment plan is developed. For the next two years, you will stick to a strict payment plan and pay off some if not all of your debt. Whatever debt that is left over when the two years is up will be discharged. With Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will not have to lose your assets.

When Can You File for Bankruptcy For A Second Time?

The timeframe for filing for bankruptcy a second time is dependent on the type of bankruptcy you filed the first time.

If you filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy the first time, then you have a significant wait before you can file again. While the bankruptcy itself remains on your credit report for ten years, you have to wait at least eight years before you will be able to qualify for a second Chapter 7 bankruptcy. You will, of course, have to re-qualify all over, and in some cases, the court may not grant your petition if they believe that you have been reckless with your credit. If you tried to do everything right following the first discharge of debt, there should be no problem filing for Chapter 7 a second time.

If you went the restructuring route the first time by filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, your situation is quite different. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy only stays on your credit report for a period of seven years, and you are free to file for another Chapter 13 bankruptcy as soon as two years following your initial debt discharge.  Because Chapter13 is a restructured payment plan, you don't have to wait as long to file Chapter 13 a second time.

If you filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy the first time, and want to file Chapter 7 again, you will need to wait eight years.

If you filed Chapter 7 the first time and want to file Chapter 13, you will need to wait four years.

If you filed Chapter 13 the first time and would like to file Chapter 13 again, you will need to wait two years.

If you filed Chapter 13 the first time and would like to file Chapter 7, you will need to wait six years.

Potential Problems Filing Bankruptcy the Second Time

You need to be careful when preparing to file bankruptcy for a second time. 

If you try to file your second bankruptcy too soon after the discharge of the first one, not only will the courts reject your petition outright, but they might label you a serial filer. This label means that the courts see you as abusing the bankruptcy process. If the courts dismiss your case, they can take one of three actions, depending on your situation:

  1. Dismiss your case without discharge, but will be willing to look at discharge six to twelve months later.
  2. Prohibit you from filing again for a set amount of time.
  3. Ban you from ever filing bankruptcy again.

Using DoNotPay to File for Your Second Bankruptcy

You have been here before, so you know what to expect if you are filing the same type. Whichever type you file, DoNotPay can make the process easier.

You have already challenged items on your credit report, looked at all your options, and waited the required amount of time. Whether you are filing the same type of bankruptcy as you did before, you want things to be easier this time.

If you want to file for your second bankruptcy the easy way, DoNotPay has you covered in 5 easy steps:

  1. Search for File for Bankruptcy on DoNotPay.

     

  2. Put together a list of your debts, expenses, and assets. If you need help accessing information like your credit report, DoNotPay can help you get your report.

     

  3. Let DoNotPay walk you through your bankruptcy options and help you determine whether a Chapter 7, Chapter 12, or Chapter 13 bankruptcy is right for you.

     

  4. DoNotPay will then help find the best credit counseling course near you, which you need to complete before filing your bankruptcy forms.

     

  5. Lastly, DoNotPay will gather all of the forms you need (including available fee waivers) and help you locate your nearest bankruptcy court. All you have to do is complete the required forms, prepare your filing fee, and file the application with your local court.

     

Once your petition is completed, the court will give you:

  • Your bankruptcy case number
  • The name of your bankruptcy trustee
  • The date, time, and location of your meeting with your trustee

Your case has officially been filed and the automatic stay now protects you from all debt collectors, and your garnishments will stop. Your trustee will then contact you if any further documents are needed. Make sure to attend your meeting as well as complete the post-filing bankruptcy debtors course to complete your bankruptcy.

DoNotPay Has Solutions for Problems in All Areas

DoNotPay does more than just help with bankruptcy, they can help in all areas with a click of a button.

When you need to solve a problem, check out DoNotPay. If you need pay parking tickets in a different city or state, DoNotPay can help. Did you need to contest your last speeding ticket? DoNotPay can help. Do you think you may be the victim of identity theft? DoNotPay can help you with your options. Were your accounts hacked? DoNotPay can help you recover them. Are you ready to cancel subscriptions or memberships? DoNotPay has a tool to help you with that.

DoNotPay can help you with just about anything you can think of.

What Else Can DoNotPay Do? 

Here are some of the things that DoNotPay can help with:

Visit DoNotPay today and see how many things they can help you with.

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