Credit collectors are known for their harassing ways when it comes to collecting on a debt. People already experiencing financial trouble often find their tactics overwhelming and stressful. One of the most notable features of the bankruptcy process is the protection from creditors offered under the automatic stay.
When a debtor files for bankruptcy an automatic stay order is issued. It legally protects debtors from creditors and collection actions. Once this order is issued creditors are prohibited from contacting a debtor or making any collection attempts. This order can be issued permanently to extend even after a debt discharge through an injunction, or may be temporary in nature. However, even a temporary break from creditors allows a debtor to be free from the stress long enough to handle their finances. The automatic stay can halt foreclosures or wage garnishments until a debt resolution plan is developed.
There are some instances in which the automatic stay order may be altered in some way or not granted at all. Certain debts may not qualify for protection under the automatic stay, which are generally those that are also not eligible for discharge in bankruptcy. Some tax debts and nearly all domestic support debt payments are rarely protected by the automatic stay. Further, a debtor may find that they are not granted an automatic stay if they have had their case previously dismissed due to failure to complete the necessary steps and requirements of the process.