Timing Your Bankruptcy Filing

Most of us tend to put our finances on the back burner until a problem arises. While this may be acceptable for some of us, ignoring our debts and financial situation can result in further problems if the need for help arrives. If you are considering filing for bankruptcy in Tampa, there are some things you should know about the timing of your case before you file the petition.

Watch The Clock

Although most of us never anticipate the need for bankruptcy, financial hardship can strike the best of us unexpectedly. One of the most important aspects to consider before seeking bankruptcy protection is based on your financial history.

First, recent financial transactions are important. Acquiring too much debt within the months leading up to a filing could be viewed as suspicious and may even result in ineligibility to file. Be sure you haven’t been overspending or charging large amounts of purchases to your debt accounts within the 180 days prior to your filing. Similarly, significant changes to your income or fund accounts could influence your case. An increase in income or funds could disqualify you from a Chapter 7 case or cause an increase in your Chapter 13 payment amount. Also, take into consideration the selling or moving of assets before you file. Any attempt to hide, sell or give away personal property before your case may be considered fraudulent.  The basic idea is to be consistent with your wages, payments and property within the months leading up to your case.

The timing of your case could also be influenced by whether you have sought bankruptcy protection in the past. If you obtained a discharged in a Chapter 7 case in the past you, will be required to wait at least 8 years before filing for another Chapter 7; or 4 years before filing for Chapter 13. If your prior debt discharge was under a Chapter 13 case, you will be required to wait at least 6 years before becoming eligible for a Chapter 7; 2 years for another Chapter 13 case.

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