Common Problems After Filing Bankruptcy
Whether you are filing chapter 7 or filing chapter 13 bankruptcy, it is always best to be prepared with the knowledge of what happens after your filing is complete. The typical paperwork you will receive to let you know that your case has legally been completed are known as the “discharge” papers. Discharge papers explain to you that your case was both completed and successful. It is always best to keep any bankruptcy forms you receive from the bankruptcy court in a personal file that you can easily keep track of. It doesn’t matter if you hired a lawyer to file your case or if you utilized a do it yourself bankruptcy, you could easily contract one of these 2 common problems after filing bankruptcy:
- Immediately Accepting New Credit: It is typical for credit card companies to offer new credit lines to individuals coming out of bankruptcy, and in some cases debtors say they are bombarded with offers in the mail every day after their discharge. Don’t be fooled though, this isn’t the credit card company trying to be generous; in fact it is quite the opposite. The companies that offer this immediate credit relief know that the US bankruptcy code only allows a debtor to file a Chapter 7 case every 8 years, so the sooner they can get your hooked on for more debt, the better for them. Instead of readily accepting these offers, think about smarter credit choices such as gas or grocery store credit cards, or even secured credit cards through your local bank. These options will allow you to rebuild credit in a healthy way and stay away from another bankruptcy 8 years down the road.
- Not Understanding Your Credit Report: It is well known that bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for 7-10 years depending on the type of Chapter that you file, but many people don’t know exactly how that will affect their life after bankruptcy. While it is true that having “bankruptcy” on your credit report does not make it impossible to purchase items, it does make things a bit more difficult. For instance, your credit will be checked if you want to do any of the following: buy a car, rent an apartment, apply for a mortgage, apply for a personal loan, apply for certain government or bank jobs. Because of your bankruptcy mark you may not be given the best interest rates, but those types of hurdles will decrease with time; many debtors say that they have no trouble purchasing a vehicle 1 year after bankruptcy, and financing a new mortgage 2 years after.
As you can see, both of these common post bankruptcy problems have simple solutions. Be sure to discuss any anxiety you are having with your bankruptcy attorney and write down any answers he/she gives you so that you feel prepared if that worry starts to set in again. If you are choosing a “do it yourself bankruptcy”and do not have an attorney, just try googling the phrase “bk info” for helpful information from knowledgeable sources. Either way, it is always best to know the options before diving head first into an unknown process.