What Happens if I Declare Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy is a legal process that helps thousands of Americans make a fresh financial start every year. If you are considering filing for bankruptcy in San Diego, you may be wondering what the process looks like. After you declare bankruptcy, you will need to file a petition in a federal bankruptcy court. If you live in San Diego, you will file for bankruptcy in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of California.

Filing Your Bankruptcy Petition

The first thing you will need to do is determine which type of bankruptcy will best suit your needs and goals. The most common types of bankruptcy are Chapter 7 bankruptcy and Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcies are considered liquidation bankruptcy. The trustee managing your case will liquidate most of your assets and use the funds to pay your creditors. 

In Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the bankruptcy trustee will help you establish a repayment plan. You will make a flat monthly payment for three to five years. After that, the court will discharge your bankruptcy. Each type of bankruptcy has different eligibility requirements, negatives, and advantages. An experienced bankruptcy lawyer can help you submit an accurate and thorough bankruptcy petition.

What Happens After You File Your Petition?

After you file your bankruptcy petition, the process will begin. The trustee will inform your creditors that you filed for bankruptcy. Once your creditors have noticed that you filed for bankruptcy, they are required by law to stop harassing you over the debt you owe them. The bankruptcy court will request specific information from you, including:

  •  The total amount of debt you owe
  •  A complete list of all of your creditors
  •  An accounting of your total income
  •  An accounting of your outgoing expenses

You will need to attend a 341 creditor meeting before the court will discharge your debt. You will also need to take classes to help you make better financial decisions. Once all of these steps have been taken, the court will discharge your debt, relieving you of the obligation to repay your creditors for certain debts. After the bankruptcy court has discharged your debt, your creditors cannot contact you or try to collect it in any other way. The bankruptcy court’s discharge is permanent and final for all the unsecured that you have included in your bankruptcy petition.

How Long Does the Process Take?

Each bankruptcy case is unique. Additionally, the timing for discharges of debt varies according to the type of bankruptcy for what you filed. However, for most Chapter 7 bankruptcies, the process takes between four to six months. Typically, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy will take between three to five years to be completed.

Discuss Your Case With a San Diego Bankruptcy Lawyer 

Do you have questions about filing for bankruptcy in San Diego? If so, the experienced bankruptcy lawyers at Bankruptcy Law Center are here to help. Contact our San Diego Law Firm today to schedule your free initial consultation. 

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Roger C.

I reached out to BLC to help assist with a chapter 7 business bankruptcy and they provided excellent guidance, advice, and support through the entire process. In my case an adversarial action was filed by one of the creditors and attorney Ahren Tiller and his staff provided sound ...arguments which prevailed. Couldn’t have found a more experienced and supportive team to represent me in a tricky situation. I would highly recommend them to anyone making the difficult but sometime necessary decision to find financial relief. Read more
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Justin R.

Like many others before and during the pandemic, life happenings caused me to be in a financial situation to warrant bankruptcy. The BLC was super professional all the way through the entire process. Right after I paid for my Bankruptcy, I got sick and had to have surgery and recovery. Then we ...were in full Pandemic mode. They were gracious to delay my filing until I was recovered and ready to file. I could not ask for more. The process was over all quick and painless for a simple Bankruptcy like mine. I feel a weight has been lifted and I can rebuild. Thank you for all your arduous work and patience, Gabriel, Ahren, and their teams are knowledgeable and efficient. Read more
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Responsive, friendly, kind, extremely easy to work with! So knowledgeable and made this entire process painless. Very grateful!

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Gabriel Hanna, Esq and the staff at BLC helped me in a very difficult time. I appreciate all the help and care they gave my case.

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I can’t say enough of how much this bankruptcy law firm helped me with my financial situation. They were all so helpful, efficient and made the difficult time and process as quick and easy as possible. I would recommend them to anyone I know and am glad to give my public recommendation as well. T...hey truly deserve a five star plus rating. Read more
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Andrea N.

I am very happy with my experience with BLC. Bankruptcy is not something anyone wants to go through, however everyone at BLC made my experience pleasant and easy. The process was explained thoroughly and I had an easy time reaching out and connecting with my attorney. Anika Renaud-Kim was my attorney ...and she was nothing short of amazing! She was very patient and generous with her time. Ms. Renaud-Kim definitely made me feel at ease and comfortable through the entire process. Read more
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they did a great job for me, helped me anytime I needed something, my Lawyer Gabriel Hanna is the best, gave lots of confidence all the time..thanks BLC I will.always recommend you, I’m very grateful for your service!!!

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Rachael C.

When searching for information I had called a few different firms and received consults. BLC was the only one who didn’t shy away and provided answers and information during the consult. Once I agreed to move forward, they were supportive, informative, and eased my anxiety through the whole process.... I can’t recommend them enough. Read more
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AmazingI had many questions and uncertainties and the carefully explained it all and made it easy to understand. They facilitated a fast and easy process making this scary difficult thing simple

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