What happens if I file for bankruptcy twice? 28 Answers as of August 25, 2011

I filed for bankruptcy a few years ago and not all my debts were discharged at the time. I have been struggling ever since to pay off these debts and would like to file again. Are there any consequences if I file twice? Will it make it impossible to build my credit again?

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Mercado & Hartung, PLLC
Mercado & Hartung, PLLC | Christopher J. Mercado
you can't file another ch 7 for 8yrs after discharge, or a ch 13 4yrs after your ch 7 discharge.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 8/25/2011
Financial Relief Law Center
Financial Relief Law Center | Mark Alonso
There are rules as to how often you can file bankruptcy. Also, if a debt wasn't discharged the first time, what has changed this time around that would allow you relief the second time around? Generally speaking, you having to wait 8 years in between chapter 7 filings and 4 years if you filed a chapter 7 previously and now want to file a chapter 13. If you filed a chapter 13 previously and now want to file a chapter 7 there may not be a waiting period, however, you would need to check to see what % of debt was paid in a prior 13 to see if there is a mandatory waiting period for a ch. 7 after having filed a chapter 13. I wouldn't say that it makes it impossible to rebuild your credit because you may still be able to repair your credit, especially if time goes on.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/25/2011
Theodore N. Stapleton, PC
Theodore N. Stapleton, PC | Theodore N. Stapleton
You can only get a chapter 7 discharge once every 8 years but you could file a chapter 13. Was your previous case a chapter 7?
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 7/25/2011
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
You can not get a second discharge in a Chapter 7 in less than 8 years. See a lawyer about a Chapter 13. I can't give you better advice because I don't know what wasn't discharged.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/25/2011
Guerrieri & Cox
Guerrieri & Cox | Michael A. Cox
You can file for bankruptcy more than once, but you may be looking at Chapter 13 if enough time has not passed. If you filed before under Chapter 7, you would have to wait 8 years for another Chapter 7, but could file a Chapter 13 within 4 years to seek a discharge under Chapter 13. I would first want to know more about the debts that were not discharged to make sure that there is nothing you could do about those debts.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 7/25/2011
    Breckenridge and Walton
    Breckenridge and Walton | Alan D. Walton
    Generally, if the debts existed at the time of filing, they are discharged, whether listed or not. You cannot file a second chapter 7 for a discharge of new debts for eight years from the first filing. You may file a chapter 13 to set up a reasonable repayment plan, even if you cannot get a discharge.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/25/2011
    The Law Office of Mark J. Markus
    The Law Office of Mark J. Markus | Mark Markus
    It won't make it any less possible to rebuild your credit than it was before. The real question is whether you're eligible to file a bankruptcy case now. There isn't enough information in your facts to answer that, but if your prior case was a Chapter 7 and you received a discharge, you must wait 8 years before you can file another Chapter 7 case in order to discharge debts. You can file a Chapter 13 case after 4 years have passed since your prior Chapter 7.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Dearbonn Law Offices
    Dearbonn Law Offices | Ajibola Oluyemisi Oladapo
    You can file bankruptcy twice within an 8 year span. For example if you filed Bankruptcy last in 2003, you will be able to file again in 2011.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Bankruptcy Law office of Bill Rubendall
    Bankruptcy Law office of Bill Rubendall | William M. Rubendall
    You cannot get a chapter 7 discharge if you have had a discharge within the past 8 years. You may, however, be eligible for a chapter 13 payment plan.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    The Northwest Debt Relief Law Firm
    The Northwest Debt Relief Law Firm | Thomas A McAvity
    If your prior filing was a chapter 7, you will need to wait eight years from the date of your last filing to file again.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Law Offices of Daniel Moulton
    Law Offices of Daniel Moulton | Daniel Moulton
    You probably can't file another Chapter 7 for eight years after the filing of your last case, if it was a Chapter 7. There are other variables and you should consult an attorney with your exact circumstances.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Tucker Legal Clinic
    Tucker Legal Clinic | Samuel Tucker
    You cannot get a discharge at this time. A Chapter 13 may help your current situation.
    Answer Applies to: Mississippi
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Cartwright Law Firm
    Cartwright Law Firm | Andrea Cartwight
    Under bankruptcy law, you can only file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy if you have not received a bankruptcy discharge within the last eight years (the eight-year period runs from your previous filing date). However, you may qualify to file a Chapter 13 after receiving a Chapter 7 discharge. A Chapter 13 will allow you to reorganize to pay your creditors not necessarily at 100% but based upon your income and expenses.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Mauritz Van Niekerk, Attorneys at Law
    Mauritz Van Niekerk, Attorneys at Law | Christiaan van Niekerk
    You can only file Chapter 7 every 8 years and Chapter 13 4 years. So you might have to wait before you can file again.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Carballo Law Offices
    Carballo Law Offices | Tony E. Carballo
    You are not eligible for a Chapter 7 discharge until 8 years after you last filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case if you received a discharge in that case and you are planning to file a Chapter 7 case now. Therefore, it will do you no good to file a Chapter 7 now if you can not get a discharge at all. You do not mention what debts were not discharged or why but most likely the reason was that those were not dischargeable debts (such as domestic support obligations, recent taxes, fines or student loans) or the Court ruled that you could not discharge those debts because of fraud, intentional injury to others or other specific reasons in the Bankruptcy Code. In that case most likely you will not be able to discharge those debts even if you are now eligible for a Chapter 7 discharge. There are exceptions of debts, such as income taxes, that do not become dischargeable until several years after they are due which may now be dischargeable assuming you can get a discharge in a Chapter 7 case now. There are some debts that are not dischargeable in Chapter 7 but might be dischargeable in a Chapter 13 case. You might be eligible for a Chapter 13 discharge now if it has been at least 4 years since you filed the Chapter 7 case.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Apple Law Firm PLLC
    Apple Law Firm PLLC | David Goldman
    There are time limitations on when you can file another bankruptcy. You should discuss this with the lawyer you want to use and see what options you have. Sometimes you can file a 7 and then a 13 without waiting so long, but you would not be able to file 2 chapter 7's in a short period of time like you are referring to.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/24/2011
    Bird & VanDyke, Inc.
    Bird & VanDyke, Inc. | David VanDyke
    You can file ch 7 bankruptcy every 8 years.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Melinda Murphy Dionne, PC
    Melinda Murphy Dionne, PC | Melinda Murphy Dionne
    Whether you are eligible to file for bankruptcy again depends on the type of bankruptcy case you filed last time. You can file a Chapter 7 case once every 8 years. If your prior case was a Chapter 7 case, you may be eligible to file a Chapter 13 case. How much you will have to pay depends on exactly how long it has been since your last case was filed. Rebuilding your credit is possible after any bankruptcy even if you have filed multiple times.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Lehn Law, PA
    Lehn Law, PA | Joseph W. Lehn
    While bankruptcy is a fresh start, you must wait 8 years from the filing of your last chapter 7 bankruptcy in order to file another chapter 7 bankruptcy. The rules for filing a chapter 13 bankruptcy are not as severe.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Ashman Law Office
    Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
    You cannot file Chapter 7 until 8 years from the prior case. It sounds like you screwed up in a prior case and failed to list creditors or acted improperly. See a lawyer to see if your old case can be reopened.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Law Office of Xochitl Anita Quezada
    Law Office of Xochitl Anita Quezada | Xochitl Anita Quezada
    Those debts should have been included in your petition. If they were, you need to dispute these debts with the creditors. Nevertheless, to answer your question, you can only file bankruptcy every 8 years from the date of filing.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Florio Law Firm, PLLC
    Florio Law Firm, PLLC | Amber Morgan Florio, Attorney at Law
    There are limitations of how many times you can file a bankruptcy within a certain amount of time. You may or may not be eligible to file again. This will depend on what chapter of Bankruptcy you filed, and when it was filed, AND what Chapter of Bankruptcy you wish to file in the future.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Law Office of Maureen O' Malley
    Law Office of Maureen O' Malley | Maureen O'Malley
    You can file more than once as long as enogh time has passed. Debts that were dischargeable the first time are not eligible the 2d time. So the issue is why were the first debts not discharged?
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Raxter Law
    Raxter Law | Jeremiah Raxter
    You can only file for bankruptcy after 8 years.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Colorado Legal Solutions
    Colorado Legal Solutions | Stephen Harkess
    There are limits on how often you can file bankruptcy and get a discharge of your debts. If you filed a Chapter 7 case, you cannot get a discharge in a Chapter 7 case filed within 8 years. You cannot get a discharge in a Chapter 13 case filed within 4 years.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 7/23/2011
    Indianapolis Bankruptcy Law Office of Eric C. Lewis
    Indianapolis Bankruptcy Law Office of Eric C. Lewis | Eric Lewis
    You can file for Chapter 7 relief once every eight years. If you previously filed a Chapter 7 and can't wait that long, you may be able to file for Chapter 13 relief.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 7/23/2011
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