Chicago Bankruptcy Timeframe: From Start To Finish

A Chicago Bankruptcy Timeframe for a case can last anywhere from 3 to 4 months from filing until discharge. This assumes that there is no objection to your discharge or no adversarial complaint in your case. Let’s start at the beginning. You need to meet with a bankruptcy attorney to go over your income, your expenses, your assets, your liabilities and of course, your financial situation in total. From that point, if you hire the attorney, a bankruptcy petition will be prepared for you to sign. This petition is a 40 to 60 page document that contains all the information about your finances. Before your case can be officially filed, you will need to complete a few pre-filing requirements.

Pre-Filing Requirements

You must complete a credit counseling session within 180 days of filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy relief. You also must provide to your attorney your most recent federal tax return. Lastly, you need to provide two months’ worth of pay advices or proof of income immediately prior to filing a bankruptcy case. You as the client can dictate how fast your case is going to be filed by how fast you complete these pre-filing requirements.

 Case Filing

Once the case is filed, the clerk of the United States Bankruptcy Court will set a meeting of creditors known as the 341 meeting. 341 correlates to section 341 of the bankruptcy code which mandates that a debtor must appear under oath in front of a chapter 7 trustee. The meeting will last approximately 5 to 10 minutes. The trustee will ask a series of yes/no questions under oath to determine whether or not you are entitled to a bankruptcy discharge and whether or not there are any assets that can be administered for the benefit of creditors. Provided everything goes well at your meeting, you will simply wait an additional two months to receive your discharge in the mail.

Waiting Period

The reason for the waiting period after the 341 meeting is that creditors have an opportunity to object to your discharge. This period of time gives the creditor’s ample time to investigate whether or not they should bring an adversarial complaint against you. Once that deadline to object has passed, you will be granted a discharge provided you have taken a two hour, personal financial management instruction course. That course must be taken after the case is filed but before the case goes to discharge. This is the final requirement that many clients fail to adhere to. If you fail to take the financial management class, your case will be closed without a discharge. If this were to happen, it will be as if you did not get the benefit of the relief that you sought even though you have a bankruptcy filing on your credit report.

 Success Stories

I have had clients that have met with me on one day and we have filed very same day. One hundred and twenty days later, they received a discharge in the mail because they fully complied with all the requirements of the bankruptcy code. If you want to have a successful chapter 7 bankruptcy case, make sure you hire experience, bankruptcy counsel to assist you in the process. A good attorney is going to make sure that you don’t have any unforeseen issues with your case. For more information, you can contact my office at 847-520-8100. We handle hundreds of bankruptcy cases per year and are well-suited to help you

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