The Eight Year Waiting Period is Over
Many consumers are confused about the 8 year waiting period requirement between bankruptcy filings. Under the Bankruptcy Abuse and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 (BAPCPA), the waiting periods for certain debtors who received a bankruptcy discharge has been changed to 8 years before a successive bankruptcy can be filed after their first bankruptcy discharge. The determining factor is the type of bankruptcy proceeding a consumer initially filed and whether the previous case was discharged or not. The 8 year rule primarily applies when you decide to file successive Chapter 7 filings. A Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a complete liquidation.
What You Need to Know About the 8 year Bankruptcy Waiting Period
Another important aspect about filing for bankruptcy in Indiana and the 8 year waiting period rule is that there is no minimum time period which prevents you from filing for bankruptcy protection. Keep in mind that the critical determining factor is whether your initial bankruptcy was discharged. The waiting rule clock starts ticking from the time your bankruptcy was discharged not filed. Therefore, if you file prior to the 8 year waiting period after your Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge, you will not be able to receive a discharge on your second and subsequent bankruptcy.
There may be some benefits to filing for another bankruptcy in Indiana before the 8 year period expires such as creditor protection because creditors are stayed from collecting a debt against you once you file for bankruptcy protection. This may give you more time to negotiate with your creditor such as your bank if you are heading towards foreclosure or your car finance company if you are behind in your car payments. However, it won’t get your debts discharged.
If your bankruptcy was never formally discharged, you withdraw the petition or your first bankruptcy was denied, then you could file sooner. However, the debts from your first bankruptcy may not be included in current bankruptcy filing and discharge. If you originally filed under Chapter 7 and then you decided to file a successive and subsequent bankruptcy under Chapter 13, the rules get even more complicated.
Getting the Right Advice
To find out whether you must wait for the 8 year period to expire before filing for bankruptcy in Indiana, it is recommended that you consult with a Indiana bankruptcy law attorney and/or a credit advisor. An Indiana bankruptcy lawyer is the only person who can legally represent you and attend bankruptcy court hearings on your behalf. An experienced Indiana bankruptcy attorney will also negotiate with your creditors and advise you of alternative options to bankruptcy. You may also wish to seek credit counseling for a certified credit counselor to help you establish responsible credit habits and debt management.