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Filing for bankruptcy relief has some consequences. Bankruptcy will remain on your credit report for 7 to 10 years depending on the type of bankruptcy. The time period starts from the date of filing not the date of discharge. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy is deleted from your credit report 7 years from the filing date. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is deleted 10 years from the filing date. The removal is automatic.
With any bankruptcy filing you should obtain a credit report within a year after the discharge is entered to verify that your pre-petition debts are classified as “discharged in bankruptcy.” If they are not, you should dispute the debts directly with the credit reporting agency. If there are any problems, you may have a claim under the fair credit reporting acts.

To rebuild credit after a bankruptcy we recommend that you pay all bills on time each month, create and stick to a budget, and not incur more debt. We also recommend paying balances in full each month on any new credit cards. Yes, you should get some new credit to start rebuilding your credit history. That plan is tough at first as you might have to get a credit card with a higher annual fee and higher interest rates. After so many months you will get invitations for new credit. For instance, one client was recently approved for a Capital One credit card with a very low balance, which is a nice start. Work your way up to a few accounts, paying all on time. Another recommendation is to set up automatic payments so everything is paid on time.

Despite what credit repair companies advertise there is no way to have your bankruptcy removed from your credit early. They may be able to help you rebuild your credit, they cannot magically make the bankruptcy filing disappear.

For more questions a bout bankruptcy, visit our FAQ page.