How Often Can You File Bankruptcy?
A common question regarding bankruptcy is whether there is a limit on how many times a person may file. As a general rule, the limit is not on how many times you can file, but on how long you must wait before you file again.
Restrictions on Multiple Filings
Keep in mind that this varies greatly by case and jurisdiction, so speak directly with Attorney Joseph P. Doyle if you want to know how long you personally need to wait between bankruptcy filings.
- Filing for Chapter 13 again – wait 2 years
- Filing for Chapter 7 again – wait 8 years
- Filing for Chapter 7 after filing for Chapter 13 – wait 6 years
- Filing for Chapter 13 after filing for Chapter 7 – wait 4 years
These restrictions on how often you can file for bankruptcy protection may not apply if your previous filing did not go all the way through (ex. it was dismissed).
Bankruptcy Is a Protection, Not a Punishment
Bankruptcy is a legal protection available to qualified individuals and businesses that need to discharge or reorganize their debt. It is helpful to remember that bankruptcy is a protection, not a punishment. Because it is a protection, there is no “three strikes and you’re out” rule. It is available to anyone who has need, so long as they meet certain requirements. While there may be rules dictating how soon you can file again, there are no rules on max number of times you can file.
While we sincerely hope you never have to go through the bankruptcy process more than once, it does happen. If you are in need of filing a second time, or you think you might be, we encourage you to contact our Chicago bankruptcy law firm today for a free review of your situation.