What happens in a bankruptcy Chapter 7

Categories: FAQs

A chapter 7 bankruptcy is typically a 90 day court procedure to eliminate most of your debts. Approximately a month after the filing of your bankruptcy, there is a court hearing where you are questioned under oath to see if you have assets that must be liquidated to eliminate your debts, and in most cases, 60 days or so after the hearing your case is completed.
 
When a bankruptcy case is successfully completed, you get a court order called a discharge. A discharge order is a permanent injunction, or restraining order, forever forcing the creditors you owe to never bother you about the debt again. If they do both you, you can sue them for violating the restraining order.
 
In some cases, the case will go beyond 90 days. This happens usually for a couple of possible reasons:
 
You want to reaffirm a car loan, and the hearing for the reaffirmation is not scheduled yet
 
The court found you have some property that it wants to sell to pay some or all of your debts. In this case, the case will continue on until the assets are sold and there has been a disclosure and approval of where the monies collected from you are going to be paid.
 
There could be some other technical reasons, such as an adversary case by or against you is being prosecuted, there are other hearings to attend, or the trustee may put your case on hiatus as she or he attempts to determine if your property is worth selling.
 
In the vast majority of cases, Chapter 7 bankruptcies are complete within 3-6 months from filing to discharge.