Credit After Bankruptcy

A Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for 10 years from the date of filing.  A Chapter 13 will stay on your report for seven years from when it is filed.  We get asked all the time something like, “So, my credit will be wiped out for 10 (or 7) years after bankruptcy?”  The answer is no.

After bankruptcy, you will have a bad mark on your credit report, but it does make your credit report disappear.  You will still have a credit score.  Immediately after a bankruptcy it will be quite bad.  However, many people considering bankruptcy have already skipped debt payments–sometimes for multiple debts for many months–so this doesn’t make a difference.

The good news is that credit can be rebuilt after bankruptcy, even during the period that the bankruptcy is on your credit report.  You do this by taking out some new debts after bankruptcy and paying as agreed.  A small credit card or two will do just fine.  What happens is that over time this positive activity starts to have a greater weight than the older bad stuff.

Accuracy in Credit Reporting:

After your bankruptcy case, some creditors will nonetheless continue to report to the credit reporting agencies that you owe a debt. After you receive a bankruptcy discharge, however, you no longer owe discharged debts. Reporting inaccuracies like this can harm your credit and prevent you from building up your credit score after bankruptcy.

When a client receives a bankruptcy discharge, we ask them whether they are interested in obtaining copies of their credit reports and taking the steps necessary to ensure maximum accuracy. If a client chooses to proceed, we provide the client with the information they need to dispute any inaccuracies due to the bankruptcy. If the inaccuracies are not corrected because the credit reporting agencies or your former creditors do not handle your dispute in the right way, we will discuss with the client the possibility of filing suit under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. After a successful settlement or verdict under this law, you would usually receive money damages and have the incorrect item removed from your report. The attorney’s fees in a successful settlement or verdict are paid for by the defendants.  

Next Steps

You can give us a call at 617-338-9400 or submit this form if you want to get a free consultation and fee quote for your case.