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Yes, You Can Repair Your Credit after Filing for Bankruptcy

Christopher J. Kane, P.C. Feb. 7, 2023

Gavel on top of bankruptcy law bookFiling for bankruptcy can help individuals, couples, and businesses in Oregon who are going through financial hardship achieve debt relief or get the financial clean slate they deserve. It is true that filing your bankruptcy petition can have a long-term impact on various aspects of your life, including your credit report or credit score. Fortunately, you may be able to repair your credit after your bankruptcy case successfully closes. 

Bankruptcy can certainly feel overwhelming. No one should have to go through bankruptcy or any kind of financial hardship on their own. That’s why Attorney Christopher J. Kane has devoted his career to offering experienced legal guidance and advocacy to clients in bankruptcy-related matters. As a knowledgeable Oregon bankruptcy attorney, he can enlighten you about how bankruptcy affects your credit score and the necessary steps you should take to rebuild your credit.  

The firm proudly serves clients in Portland and surrounding areas throughout Oregon, including Clackamas, Yamhill, Columbia, and Washington counties. Set up a consultation today. 

How Long Does a Bankruptcy Stay on Your Credit Report?  

Generally, the bankruptcy filing stays on your credit report between 7 and 10 years. However, the exact number of years will depend on whether you're filing for protection under U.S. Bankruptcy Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. 

  • Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: If you file for Chapter 7, bankruptcy will stay on your credit report for up to 10 years. 

  • Chapter 13 Bankruptcy: If you file for Chapter 13, bankruptcy will remain on your credit report for 7 years. 

Additionally, potential lenders will be able to view the bankruptcy information in the public records section of your report. This may result in some difficulties when seeking certain loans. Nonetheless, you would still be able to carry out certain credit-related activities, such as buying a car or house. It’s vital to contact a bankruptcy attorney for help at any stage of the bankruptcy process, no matter your particular situation.  

Does that Mean I Can't Do Anything Requiring Credit for 7-10 Years? 

Your bankruptcy petition will appear on your credit report. Regardless, this doesn't prevent you from performing activities or transactions that require credit during the period. Essentially, you may be able to: 

  • Buy a property within 1 to 2 years of filing your Chapter 13 case 

  • Buy a motor vehicle within 6 months of filing your Chapter 13 case 

  • Purchase property within 2 to 4 years after a Chapter 7 discharge 

  • Purchase a motor vehicle after your Chapter 7 discharge (within 4 months of filing your case) 

Having negative information on your credit report won't totally deter you from purchasing a property or motor vehicle. However, making intelligent financial decisions is imperative to rebuild your credit score and eventually improve your finances. 

What Steps Can I Take to Rebuild Credit?  

You don't have to wait until you get your Chapter 7 discharge or complete your Chapter 13 repayment plan before you start rebuilding your credit. Essentially, you can start the credit rebuilding—and seeking financial peace of mind—even while bankruptcy still appears on your report. If you're trying to rebuild your credit score after filing for bankruptcy, you should take the following steps: 

  • Be sure to monitor your credit scores regularly 

  • Request for and review your credit reports every year, ensuring that the information in your report is accurate 

  • Apply for a secured credit card or bankruptcy-friendly unsecured credit cards  

  • Handle reaffirmed debts cautiously 

  • Take out a credit-builder loan 

  • Get a co-signer who has an impressive credit score 

  • Use auto-pay with fixed bills 

  • Pay off your credit card balance fully and avoid accumulating debts going forward. 

Once your bankruptcy case successfully closes or your debts have been discharged, you can start to move forward and regain your peace of mind. A personal bankruptcy lawyer can guide you through the necessary steps to rebuild your creditworthiness and improve your financial condition. 

Speak With an Experienced Bankruptcy Attorney 

When overwhelmed with debts, deciding to file for bankruptcy is a huge step toward achieving financial relief. While your bankruptcy petition might plummet your credit score, taking the right steps is crucial to start rebuilding. Attorney Christopher J. Kane has the diligence to advise and guide consumers through the complexities involved in filing for bankruptcy and rebuilding their credit scores. 

At Christopher J. Kane, P.C., a skilled attorney can determine the right bankruptcy chapter for your unique financial situation, help file your petition, and represent you at court proceedings. In addition, Attorney Christopher J. Kane will craft a strategic plan to manage and rebuild your credit score, improve your finances post-bankruptcy, help you become credit-worthy, and ultimately pursue a stable financial future. 

Contact Christopher J. Kane, P.C. today to schedule a simple, one-on-one consultation with a seasoned bankruptcy lawyer. The firm proudly serves clients across Portland, Clackamas, Yamhill, Columbia, and Washington counties, Oregon.