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Bankruptcy Timeline

One of the many questions that we get asked by our clients is how long will the whole process of bankruptcy will take. This is a valid question and the good news is that it shouldn’t take too long. The average Chapter 7 bankruptcy case can be completed in as little as three or four months. For Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the case is not considered ‘closed’ until after your debts are discharged which will be after your three to five year payment plan ceases. Below is a brief time frame for bankruptcy:

  • You will meet with a Minnesota bankruptcy lawyer to go over your case. From here, if you do decide to file for bankruptcy, you will need to come back and bring with documentation demonstrating your financial situation as well as the names and addresses of all creditors.  We will then go over your documents and put together a petition for bankruptcy. We will also file it to the courts. This can take around one week to complete as long as we have the required information.
  • As soon as the petition is filed, the creditors will be notified within seven days at most. You will be appointed with a trustee and be protected from any further harassment, wage garnishment and foreclosure warnings through an automatic stay notice.
  • You will receive notice that you need to attend one financial management counseling session, done during your own time. This will need to be completed soon after you have filed and before discharge
  • You will also receive notice of a creditor’s meeting which you will need to attend with your Minnesota bankruptcy attorney. The date set will depend on a number of things but shouldn’t be more than 90 days after you have filed.  In general, it will happen 30 to 45 days after you have filed.
  • Once you attend the creditors’ meeting and go over your situation, the creditors will have 60 days to file a petition against your bankruptcy case.
  • Once the 60 days are up, your debts will be discharged under a chapter 7 bankruptcy. Under a chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will then be placed on an allotted payment plan for three to five years. Once this time is up, your debts will be discharged.

After Filing for Bankruptcy

The below times are only an example and will depend entirely on how you manage your finances after the debts have been discharged. However, with proper credit building, you can expect to:

  • Receive a loan for a car on fairly good terms in twelve to eighteen months
  • Receive a loan for a home on fairly good terms in three to four years

What this means is that, by rebuilding your credit and saving your money, you will be able right back on your feet in no time. However, keep in mind that there are limits in place on how many bankruptcies you can file and when so try not to get ahead of yourself. If you do choose to apply for a new credit card, which can be a good way to build your credit up, make sure you are able to pay it back right away or use it for emergencies only.

For more information on the bankruptcy process, bankruptcy timeline or what happens after you file for bankruptcy, contact experienced Minnesota bankruptcy lawyer Brea Buettner-Stanchfield at 612-377-5311.