Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Timeline

A no-asset Chapter 7 bankruptcy case is streamlined to take as little time as possible. The typical case is over in about three to four months. To keep the case moving along, the federal law has imposed certain deadlines on a Chapter 7 case for the debtor, the trustee, and the bankruptcy court to follow:

Day of Filing – The bankruptcy court issues a case number. Use this case number when notifying creditors with pending legal or collection action of your bankruptcy filing. If you have not filed all of the required bankruptcy schedules, the court will issue a show cause order to dismiss your case. You are required to file the necessary schedules by the court’s deadline, usually 14 days from the date of filing. 11U.S.C. §521

Seven Days Prior to the 341 Meeting – Tax returns for the most recent tax year must be sent to the bankruptcy trustee. These documents are usually sent to the trustee on the date that you file your case. 11U.S.C. §521(e)(2)(A)

21 to 60 Days After Filing – Your 341 meeting of creditors will be held. You are required to attend this meeting and all of your creditors will receive notice of this meeting and may attend (although it is rare that any actually show up). 11U.S.C. §341, 11 U.S.C. §343, Fed. Rule 2003.

45 Days after the First Setting of the 341 Meeting – You must file your Financial Management Course certificate with the court. Fed. Rule 1007(b)(7)(c)

60 Days after the First Setting of the 341 Meeting – Reaffirmation agreements between you and your creditor(s) must be filed with the bankruptcy court. 11U.S.C. §524(c)

60 Days after the First Setting of the 341 Meeting – The Court enters an order discharging individual Debtors after all requirements are met, but no sooner than the last day to object to the Debtor’s Discharge. This is usually 60 days after the 1st setting of the 341 Meeting of Creditors unless a motion is filed with the court to extend that time. The actual date to file objections to the discharge will be stated on the 341 Meeting of Creditors Notice. 11 U.S.C. §727, Fed. Rule 4004.

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