How Long Does a Bankruptcy Stay on Your Credit Report?

In this part of the 21st century it often seems as if we live and die by our credit reports. The scores and information contained in those reports can influence everything from what jobs we get, to how much we pay for insurance on our homes and cars, and where we can live. Many of us spend a lot of time and effort getting into and staying in a good credit range, but sometimes life takes a turn. Usually something happens and you are in a bankruptcy court, working out a way to move forward from debts that are overwhelming.

All negative credit information sticks on your credit report, but the good news is that the stickiness diminishes over time. In other words, the older the ding, the less relevant it is to your current credit status. For most negative information, seven is the magic number. Certain debts such as unpaid tax liens and other public debts can stick around indefinitely, but for collections, foreclosures, and late payments, the term is seven years.

How long does a bankruptcy stay on your credit report?

That depends on whether it’s a reorganization or a liquidation. If it’s a reorganization bankruptcy – Chapter 13 – it drops off after seven years, just the same as most other debt. However, if you’ve filed for and completed Chapter 7 bankruptcy, it will stay on your credit for the next ten years. This does not mean that your credit is ruined for a decade, and it’s only myth that everyone is impacted the same way by bankruptcy. You can actually work toward a very good score even shortly after you complete your bankruptcy. A good score is not going to happen overnight, but you can start from scratch and begin to negate the effects of that bankruptcy right away.

In fact, lenders might see you as an attractive prospect for credit, since you can’t file again until seven years have passed. One of the first things to do is to get copies of your credit reports and make sure that all the debts that should be listed as discharged in bankruptcy are marked as discharged. You can even start improving your score while in bankruptcy by policing that credit report for accuracy. Items not part of the bankruptcy should not be reported as part of the filing, however items that are covered by the stay should be reported as such.


So, as you can see, it’s not really a question of how long a bankruptcy stays on your report, but what you do before, during, and after to minimize the damage. Mandatory credit counseling will be a part of your bankruptcy, and we can help too. Getting people back on the right track is what we do, not just the filing and pleading. Get in touch with us before you file. We’ll give you a free consultation so that you know just where you stand and what kind of help you’ll need.

Published by
Chad Van Horn

Recent Posts

Why using retirement funds to pay off credit card debt is terrible idea

Using your retirement funds to pay off credit card debt might seem like a quick…

4 days ago

NSU Law Grads Recognized for Outstanding Pro Bono Service

Graduates from Nova Southeastern University’s Shepard Broad College of Law recently were honored for completing…

2 weeks ago

How to Deal with Social Security Overpayments in Bankruptcy

Navigating the legalities surrounding social security overpayments in bankruptcy proceedings can be complex, depending on…

3 weeks ago

Protect Your Love Nest: Tenancy by the Entireties Exemption Explained

One of the most popular exemptions is the tenancy by the entireties exemption, which shields…

1 month ago

The Hidden Dangers of Debt and How to Avoid Them

Debt can pose financial risks, some of which could have long-term consequences if left unattended.…

1 month ago

How to get out of debt in record time: A step-by-step guide

The first thing you need to do is take a deep breath and face the…

1 month ago