Bankruptcy Facts

Long Island Bankruptcy Law Firm

How long will bankruptcy proceedings last?
Who will know that I filed bankruptcy?
How long will a bankruptcy stay on my credit?
If I file bankruptcy will creditors stop harassing me?
Should I file bankruptcy jointly with my spouse?

How long will bankruptcy proceedings last?

For a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, this may last 4 to 6 months. For a Chapter 13 case, this may last 3 to 5 years, as the payment plan is part of these proceedings, and the payment plan usually lasts for that amount of time.

Who will know that I filed bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy filings are considered to be public records, but the only people who will really be aware of your status are creditors and credit bureaus, who will record your bankruptcy on your credit record.

How long will a bankruptcy stay on my credit?

An individual's filing for bankruptcy may remain on his or her credit report for up to 10 years. However, if the debtor successfully completes the payment plan in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy case, this may be limited to 7 years.

If I file bankruptcy will creditors stop harassing me?

Creditors are required by law to cease all actions against a debtor once bankruptcy has been filed. Creditors will not be able to initiate or continue lawsuits or even telephone calls to the debtor. At The Law Offices of Stephen P. Gelfand, P.C., we can help you with creditor harassment if creditors do not cease contacting you after you've filed bankruptcy.

Should I file bankruptcy jointly with my spouse?

Even if you and your spouse do not share the same creditors, a joint filing is permitted. Married couples have special issues that they should take into account when filing for bankruptcy. Spouses have the option to file bankruptcy jointly. Essentially, a joint filing involves two separate bankruptcy cases that are administered as a single case in the interest of judicial economy. Only one filing fee is paid for a joint filing.

Determining whether you should file individually or jointly with your spouse is an important issue to consider when determining whether to file for bankruptcy. If you and your spouse share much of your debt, it may be in your best interests to file jointly, as your spouse may be held liable for the debt that you share. When you consider that many married couples have joint credit cards, mortgage loans and car loans, filing jointly may be the only way to avoid having one spouse held liable for these debts.

Joint and individual bankruptcy will have different impacts on a debtor depending on whether they file a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 case. For example, filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy means that the non-filing spouse may be offered more protection from liability for shared debts. Chapter 7, however, may offer no protection to the non-filing spouse.

Contact The Law Offices of Stephen P. Gelfand, P.C.
631-470-5300
WE HANDLE ONE CASE AT A TIME

548 WEST JERICHO TURNPIKE, SMITHTOWN, NEW YORK 11787 | TEL: (631) 470-5300 | FAX: (631) 470-5302 | info@stephengelfandlaw.com