Common Bankruptcy Questions

Bankruptcy will not necessarily ruin your credit, especially in the long run. A bankruptcy filing will be reported on your credit history for seven (7) to ten (10) years. Its impact, while generally negative, will depend on a few factors, including the time frame (short vs long term), how high or low your credit score was when you filed, whether you receive a discharge in your bankruptcy, and what you do to rebuild your credit after you receive your discharge.  

  • In the short term, a bankruptcy filing will have a more negative impact on your credit than in the long term, especially after the bankruptcy is no longer reported on your credit history.  
  • If your credit score is higher when you file, then your score will probably fall much farther than if your score is lower when you file.  
  • If you do not receive your discharge for some reason, then none of your debts will be eliminated and they will still be owed despite your bankruptcy filing. Furthermore, the bankruptcy filing will still be reported on your credit, so this is not a good outcome. 
  • There are a variety of things you can do to rebuild your credit after you receive your bankruptcy discharge and there are many free and easily accessible websites that specialize in credit and financial advice.  

It depends. Our firm focuses on Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. These chapters are commonly filed by individuals with primarily consumer debts. There are eligibility requirements for each kind of bankruptcy and there are many reasons why one chapter may be more appropriate for your situation than the other. Therefore, it is important to discuss your options with an attorney prior to filing. An attorney should be able to review your information, discuss your options, answer your questions, and quote you a price so that you can make an informed decision about what will be in your best interest. 

Student loans are generally considered to be nondischargeable in bankruptcy, which means that they are not eliminated and are still owed, plus any interest or fees that may have accrued during the bankruptcy, after the bankruptcy is over. There are limited circumstances in which courts have reduced or discharged a debtor’s student loans, but these typically require exceptional circumstances and involve significant and expensive litigation in addition to the bankruptcy filing itself.

Not necessarily. There are certain kinds of debts that are nondischargeable, including most taxes, fines, and penalties owed to governmental units, student loans, domestic support obligations, any debt that was incurred through fraud, debts that are reaffirmed in Chapter 7, debts that are maintained and cured in Chapter 13, and debts that are not listed in your bankruptcy paperwork. Bankruptcy will typically discharge debts such as credit cards, medical bills, personal loans, secured debts (typically mortgages or auto loans) for which the property is given back to or taken back by the creditor.

It depends. For Chapter 7 bankruptcy, we may charge a higher or lower fee depending on the complexity of your situation. For Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the fees and costs are generally set by the court. Your attorney should be able to quote both the fees and any applicable costs that would be required to file your case after reviewing your information with you.