We are bankruptcy attorneys located in Eastgate, Ohio. We specialize in Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy filings.
LIFE AFTER DISCHARGE
Congratulations, you have received your bankruptcy discharge at the end of your Chapter 13 case. You are anxious to get a fresh start. What should you do next? Here are a few steps you should take to rebuild your credit, ensure financial future and make sure you get the new debt-free status.
KEEP COPIES OF YOUR BANKRUPTCY PAPERWORK
It is important to keep copies of your petition, schedules, and order of discharge for your records. You can retrieve these copies later, if you lose them, however, it may cost you and can be a bit of a hassle.
Why keep your paperwork? Although it does not happen every day, creditors have been known to collect on a debt that has been discharged through bankruptcy. You will need this paperwork if any creditor harasses you for payment after discharge. Creditors can get into major trouble for harassing you once your case is discharged. As we will discuss later, you may need your paperwork to correct any issues with your credit report.
YOUR CREDIT REPORT
Once you receive your discharge you should take the time to send a copy of your schedules and discharge to the reporting agencies. Once you have taken that step wait a few months (as it does take some time for the credit reporting agencies to update your report) and then check your credit report. You may pull your free credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com. All debts included in your bankruptcy should read “discharged in bankruptcy” or something similar.
MAKE PAYMENT ARRANGEMENTS
If you have any non-dischargeable debts, such as certain taxes, you will need to contact the creditor to make arrangements to pay them. You will have to directly contact the IRS, state revenue department (e.g., Ohio Department of Taxation), or the local taxing authority to make payment arrangements.
If you had student loans which survive your bankruptcy you must contact your financial provider to make payment arrangements on the your remaining student loan debt.
REBUILD YOUR CREDIT
To rebuild your credit, you may wish to obtain a secured credit card. A secured credit card has your money deposited into a bank account as collateral for the credit card. Please note that a secured credit card is not the same as a pre-paid credit card, as a pre-paid credit card does not report on your credit. Shop around for these and pay attention as some will charge your interest. You also want to make sure that they will be reporting to the credit reporting agencies. We do not recommend getting multiple cards.
Make any debt payments that you kept after the bankruptcy such as your home or vehicle on time. You will rebuild your credit before you know it.
For more information check out our website at Keegan
We are bankruptcy attorneys located in Eastgate, Ohio. Call today for a free consultation.