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Common Timelines in Bankruptcy Cases


How long does the average bankruptcy case take, and what are the steps in a timeline for the average bankruptcy case? Since there are various types of bankruptcy, there is no single overall bankruptcy timeline, but there are particular expectations that you may be able to use as a guide based on the type of bankruptcy you are planning to file for — as an individual or as a business. Our experienced West Palm Beach bankruptcy lawyers can explain more about timelines in different kinds of bankruptcy cases and factors that can ultimately affect the length of a bankruptcy case.

Chapter 7 Timeline  

Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases tend to take between four months and six months from filing to discharge or closing of the bankruptcy case. After filing a bankruptcy petition, there are several quick deadlines for filing additional materials and documentation. The 341 meeting of creditors typically takes place between 20 and 40 days after filing, individuals are required to complete a financial management course usually between 80 to 100 days after filing, and then an individual’s case can be discharged after that point. It is important to remember that businesses filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy do not receive discharges like individuals do.

Chapter 11 Timeline 

Traditional Chapter 11 cases can take quite some time, with some lasting more than five years depending upon the length of the repayment plan that is confirmed by the bankruptcy court. Between filing and the completion of the repayment plan, there are many additional steps. From the time of filing to confirmation of a repayment plan, debtors can expect anywhere typically from 6 to 12 months. Repayment plan timelines can then last up to five years, but they will depend on the debtor’s specific situation. Timelines also involve quarterly trustee payments.

Keep in mind that Subchapter V is a type of Chapter 11 bankruptcy that is less complex and can take less time overall than a complicated traditional Chapter 11 bankruptcy case.

Chapter 13 Timeline 

Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases, which are reorganization bankruptcies for individuals (or for sole proprietors who will also be filing for business bankruptcy), typically have a timeline of just over three to five years due to the length of the repayment plan. To be sure, most plans last three to five years, after which point the debtor can seek a discharge of remaining eligible debts. The general timeline leading up to that begins with the bankruptcy case filing, and payments to the Chapter 13 trustee for the repayment plan typically begin within 30 days of filing. There are additional timeline elements while you are making payments on your repayment plan, including the 341 meeting of creditors, and a financial management course certificate.

Contact a West Palm Beach Bankruptcy Attorney 

Any individual or business owner that has questions about what to expect in a South Florida bankruptcy case should get in touch with an experienced West Palm Beach bankruptcy lawyer at Kelley, Fulton, Kaplan & Eller as soon as possible. Our firm represents individuals and businesses alike in a wide range of bankruptcy cases, and we are here to answer your questions today.





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