While Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies are designed to give individuals a fresh financial start by discharging debt and educating the filer on common financial pitfalls and how to avoid them, sometimes they find themselves facing similar financial difficulties and contemplating filing bankruptcy a second or even third time. You are able to file bankruptcies multiple times within your lifetime, but there are rules in the bankruptcy code that dictate the amount of time that must pass before filing bankruptcy again. In other words, if you file bankruptcy too soon after receiving a bankruptcy discharge, you won’t get another one.
Technically, you can file for bankruptcy as many times as you want without limit, however the main objective of bankruptcy: discharging your excess debt is limited. After filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and receiving a debt discharge you cannot receive a second discharge using Chapter 7 bankruptcy for another 8 years. In Chapter 13 bankruptcy discharges, you must wait an addition two years from when your first Chapter 13 case was filed. If you mix the two types of personal bankruptcy then the order in which you filed will dictate how long you will have to wait for a second discharge. As an example, if you filed chapter 13 bankruptcy, you must wait six years to receive a discharge under Chapter 7 bankruptcy. There are a couple of exceptions including: paying unsecured creditors in full during the course of your Chapter 13 bankruptcy, or you paid at least 70% of your creditor claims in Chapter 13 and the plan was proposed in good faith and represented your best effort.
There are many other circumstances revolving around filing multiple bankruptcies that can complicate your ability to receive a discharge of debt. These considerations include if your first case was dismissed or if your first discharge was denied. If you have filed bankruptcy before and have additional questions about filing a subsequent bankruptcy, go over your plan with your Dallas bankruptcy attorney who will be adequately informed about how long you will have to wait to have your debt discharged.