Filing Time Limits in Bankruptcy

Seal of the United States bankruptcy court. Ch...


How often can I receive a discharge of debts through bankruptcy?

Although you can file bankruptcy as many times as you want, you can only obtain a discharge – wiping your debts away – periodically based on what chapter you have filed.

CHAPTER 7:  If you have received a discharge in a Chapter 7 or Chapter 11, you will be unable to obtain another discharge in a Chapter 7 within eight years of the filing of the first, with the time period being measured from the time of the filing of the first bankruptcy, not by the discharge order date.  If the debtor has previously obtained a discharge in a Chapter 12 or Chapter 13, he will not be able to obtain a discharge within 6 years unless fairly strict standards are met regarding the amount of debt paid off in the original filing.

CHAPTER 13:  If a debtor receives a discharge in a Chapter 7, 11 or 12, they are ineligible for a second discharge in Chapter 13 within four years of the initial filing.  A debtor is unable to obtain a discharge in a Chapter 13 and then another Chapter 13 within two years of each case.

Are you struggling with your finances and are considering filing?