Bankruptcy & How Long The Process Takes

Chapter 7 bankruptcy can last anywhere from 100 to 120 days from start to finish.  It basically works like this: once the Chapter 7 bankruptcy case is filed, there is a notice that goes out to all creditors, the debtor and the debtor’s attorney advising of an upcoming meeting called a 341 Meeting of Creditors.  This meeting is held anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks after filing where a Chapter 7 trustee is going to interview the debtor under oath regarding assets, liabilities and all the information in the bankruptcy petition.  Creditors have an opportunity to appear at this meeting, however most will not under Chapter 7 because they rely on the Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee to perform the examination.  If there are any assets involved that the trustee can take and administer, a Notice of Assets will be sent to creditors.

After the Meeting of Creditors, there’s a 60 to 90 day waiting period whereby creditors have an opportunity to object to a discharge of a particular debt or to the discharge of the entire bankruptcy case.  Once that deadline has expired and provided no one has filed an objection or adversarial complaint, then the clerk of the Circuit Court will send a discharge letter to all of the creditors, to the debtor and to the debtor’s attorney notifying all the parties involved that the case has gone through to completion and no one could take certain collection actions upon that debtor.

So, if everything goes well on the case from filing until discharge, it’s going to be approximately 110 days.  Keep in mind that the debtor typically will only appear at one Meeting of Creditors and the rest of the timeframe is just waiting out particular statutory requirements and deadlines before a discharge can be entered.


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