You have already filed and completed a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. All of your unsecured debts have either been paid off or discharged and all of your secured debts (such as your mortgage) are current. You found the light at the end of your financial debt tunnel. In addition to your mortgage, you have been approved for a couple of new credit cards and a personal loan. You are able to make all payments very easily. Then, very unexpectedly, you are laid off from your job or are forced to take a pay cut. You can no longer afford to continue to pay your mortgage along with the credit cards and personal loan. Your creditors are already sending you harassing letters in the mail and calling your phone multiple times a day. You are devastated. You worked so hard to get out of your financial crisis only to find yourself in another one. You need bankruptcy protection NOW. You find out that your income is now low enough to qualify for a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. So you think you’ll just file a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, reaffirm your mortgage, and be ok. Right? You meet with a bankruptcy attorney to get the process started only to find out you cannot file a Chapter 7; at least, not yet.
The good news is that you can definitely file bankruptcy again, but there are very strict time limits that must be followed if you have already received a Chapter 13 discharge. In order to file a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, you must wait 6 years from when you filed your Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, but you only have to wait 2 years from when you filed your Chapter 13 in order to file another Chapter 13. Therefore, you can usually file for another Chapter 13 immediately after receiving a Chapter 13 discharge, since Chapter 13 Plans generally last between three and five years.
In the above scenario, you filed your first Chapter 13 Bankruptcy on August 15, 2013. Today is October 29, 2015, just over 2 years later. Therefore, you cannot yet file a Chapter 7, but you can file another Chapter 13 in order to receive bankruptcy protection now from your harassing creditors.
If you have previously received a Chapter 13 Discharge but are facing another financial hardship, speak with an experienced Jacksonville Bankruptcy Attorney today. An attorney can help you decide whether a second Chapter 13 is right for you. Contact the Law Office of David M. Goldman, PLLC today by calling (904) 685-1200.