Many Florida residents file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy when their debt becomes unmanageable. Are you considering doing so? If so, you should understand what it means to get a Chapter 7 discharge.
What is a Chapter 7 discharge?
The discharge in Chapter 7 bankruptcy is a legally binding document that releases you from owing certain debts. It also prevents your creditors from making collection attempts. You will likely receive a Chapter 7 discharge if your bankruptcy case isn’t dismissed or converted to another form of bankruptcy.
How long does it take to get a Chapter 7 discharge?
The bankruptcy court will issue a discharge after the meeting with your creditors. This meeting gives creditors a chance to object to your Chapter 7 filing. Your creditors can also ask for more time to object. If there’s no objection to your filing, then you should get your discharge within 60 to 90 days after meeting with your creditors.
Does a discharge erase all debts?
Some of your debts are not subject to a Chapter 7 discharge. If you have secured creditors, they may retain the right to seize any belongings that secure an existing debt. This generally applies if you decide you want to keep property that is secured – such as a vehicle. You will have the option to reaffirm that particular debt.
When you reaffirm a debt, it’s no longer included in your bankruptcy. You make an agreement with your creditor to pay all or some of the money you owe. Unless you reaffirm the debt, it will get discharged during your bankruptcy. The creditor agrees to let you keep the property as long as you pay as promised.
Chapter 7 discharge exceptions
There are some debts that Chapter 7 always excludes. Some items that are excluded include child support, alimony and legal fines owed for unlawful activity. You are liable for these debts even if you file for bankruptcy.