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Is It Possible to File Bankruptcy More than Once?

Oct. 26, 2020

Many people who file for bankruptcy only need to do so once to get their finances back on track. Yet, after your case’s discharge, you might have experienced personal difficulties that have continued to affect your financial health. Or, your previous bankruptcy might have only taken care of some of your debt, and it has kept accumulating since. Filing bankruptcy more than once may seem unappealing, but it is possible and could provide you the relief you need.

Filing Chapter 13 After Chapter 7

In most instances, you cannot file bankruptcy right after your last case was discharged. The exception is if you file Chapter 13 bankruptcy immediately after a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge. If you have this option, you may be able to satisfy debts that you did not – or could not – discharge through a single case. Not all courts will allow you to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy right after a Chapter 7 discharge, though. If this happens to you, you will have to wait four years from the date you filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Filing Chapter 7 After Chapter 13

After completing a repayment plan through Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may now want to file Chapter 7 bankruptcy to discharge your remaining debts. To do so, you must wait six years from the date you filed Chapter 13 bankruptcy. You may be able to file sooner, though, if you repaid your unsecured debts in full. This option may also be available to you if you satisfied 70% or more of your claims and made your best efforts to repay the rest.

Filing the Same Chapter Subsequently

If you file multiple bankruptcies under the same chapter, your timeline will depend on which chapter you pursue. To file Chapter 7 bankruptcy again, you must wait eight years from the date of your previous filing. If you plan on filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy again, you will only have to wait two years from the date of your previous filing to do so.

Filing multiple bankruptcies can come with challenges, and you may have concerns about its long-term impact on your finances. An attorney can help you understand the process and guide you toward recovery and stability.