Restrictions on Filing for Bankruptcy
Wondering who can file for bankruptcy? Your California bankruptcy attorney can guide in the process and guidelines whether you are looking for chapter 13 bankruptcy rules or chapter 7 bankruptcy information.
First, if you have previously filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the past 7 to 8 years, you are not eligible to file again. Can you file bankruptcy twice? Yes, but there are restrictions that will determine when and which form of bankruptcy you pursue. Even when determining who can file for bankruptcy, the process generally will take 4 to 6 months to complete. There is a required credit counseling course before you file and then extensive paperwork leading up to formally filing for bankruptcy.
Your initial credit counseling will look at your ability to pay outstanding debts and whether you are facing wage garnishments or foreclosure. In some of those cases, bankruptcy can be a means to start over with creditors and to repay debts without digging further financial holes. When looking at who can file for bankruptcy, remember that your civil debts are not going to get you thrown into jail. Fortunately, debtors prison is a thing of the past and hopefully, most debts can be overcome with some persistence.
Depending on your situation, you may be a candidate for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The first, Chapter 7, is sometimes known as the “fresh start” form of bankruptcy because it allows you to discharge your debts. A trustee will use any non exempt possessions to pay back creditors as available, but you will usually be able to keep your home under the Chapter 7 guidelines.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a reorganization of your debts and payments. Typically you can keep your home and car as long as you are current with your debt repayment plans. In Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you typically have up to 5 years to repay your creditors as part of the guidelines.